Grant Programs Update, Top 5 Tips for Grant Applications

Friday 14 May 2021

Mid-year is a busy time for grant programs. Read our latest update on current and upcoming grants and our top 5 tips for a successful grant application process...

The Integration and Translation streams of the Federal Government’s Modern Manufacturing Initiative grants scheme have now closed for applications. This grant scheme provided Foodability Co. with the opportunity to assist one of our valued clients to put together a funding application for a multi-million-dollar grant for a significant plant upgrade project. The process included the development of written criteria content and a project plan, as well as the collaboration and compiling of all required documentation and data to complete the application process successfully and on time.

Mid-year tends to be a busy time for grant programs, so here are a couple of the current and upcoming grant programs to keep in mind:

  • The third stream of the Modern Manufacturing Initiative – the collaboration stream – is due out at the end of June. This grant will provide funding for very large projects that support business-to-business and business-to-research collaboration, to build economies of scale.
  • The QLD government has recently published their small business grants program including the Business Basics grant, Business Boost grant and the Business Growth Fund. These grant programs offer funding ranging between $5k and $50k to support small and medium-sized QLD businesses at different growth stages to increase core capabilities, improve efficiency, buy highly specialised equipment, and accelerate growth opportunities. You can read more about each of these programs here.

If you are looking at putting together a grant application, we asked our resident grant-writer, Maree O’Keeffe, who manages our client grant applications including the technical writing aspect, to put together her top five tips for a successful grant application process. Here are her responses:

1 - Make sure your project is the right fit

As well as checking that you meet the eligibility requirements for the program you should also make sure it is a good fit for your project. Grants are often awarded based on how well the application fits the stated objectives of the program. If your project does not fit the objectives, it is often better to find another program that does, as an application for a project that is clearly aligned with the program objectives stands a better chance of success then one that doesn’t.

2 - Know your project

If you are putting together a grant application, you should first document the overall objectives of your project as well as the potential benefits to the business. Developing clear objectives and outlining the benefits of the project upfront helps you to build a consistent and clear argument throughout your application content.

3 - Engage your stakeholders

It is important to engage your project stakeholders throughout the development of the application and not just at the sign-off stage, especially for large-scale projects. Stakeholders can help you fill in the detail on the more complex aspects of the project and can also provide key insights into other deliverables and benefits that may have been overlooked at a higher level of the business, allowing you to further refine and strengthen your application.

4 - Speak the language

Read all the published guidelines and supporting documentation related to the program to develop a list of key program objectives and to identify the key phrases and terminology used. You should ensure all your application content reflects these objectives and contains consistent messaging that speaks to the key phrases and terminology used in the program documentation.

5 - Develop an application program

Make a detailed list of all the required content and supporting documentation for the application process and develop a program including a timeline for all the deliverables. Make sure you build in enough time in your program for stakeholder engagement and sign-off of content and to finish your application early, to allow for any unexpected surprises or delays.

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