Five Grant Management Red Flags – Why manual systems can create problems

In implementing Grant Management Software Solutions, Blue Wren project managers have worked directly with numerous administrators at well-known educational, research, and public service institutions. Through these efforts, we have identified five grant management red flags that institutions should keep in mind when reviewing their internal policies and procedures, especially those procedures that are manual in nature. By reviewing and monitoring these areas, institutions can watch for key indicators to identify potential problem areas.

Failure to follow internal procedures due to redundant work

Failures in following internal procedures occur when each individual staff member operates and manages grant documents in their own systematic way. This frequently causes the team to handle the same files, spreadsheets, and documents multiple times as individuals are assessing the data in their own specific way and in separate locations. As a result, time consuming cross checks for handling inaccuracies and revisions becomes an unnecessary additional step within the process.

Sponsor mandates and grant requirements can’t be fulfilled easily by the team

In a manual tracking system, research and grant administrators have trouble managing compliance requirements and meeting both internal and sponsor mandated deadlines. This is especially true when it comes to generating reports for documenting the use of federal funds or verifying compliance in highly regulated sectors.

Difficulty in reporting

Due to many individualized tracking systems, there is no easy way to generate easy to read reports that provide summary and detailed information for managing current and pending funding for an entire institution, organizational unit, key person, or sponsor. The same is often true for monitoring committed effort.

Consolidated or streamlined grant management is not possible

When the organization receives multiple grants within a short period, it may be difficult for the administrator to keep track of important information associated with each grant. This will not only become an administrative burden, but puts the institution at risk.

Communication and collaboration issues arise

Maintaining clear lines of communication between stakeholders can be a hard task to manage in the best of situations. In sponsored project management, however, communication can be unusually difficult because of the number and variety of individuals involved. For example, a large research project may involve multiple administrators, project managers, research scientists, and highly skilled technical staff. Without proper and timely communication and collaboration, reporting deadlines can be forgotten or easily missed, compliance problems may arise, and the quality of the worked performed may suffer.

Grant Management Software Systems are key for improving Sponsored Project Management

A key step in avoiding these red flag areas in grant management is the implementation of a grant management software system designed for both pre and post-award administration. At Blue Wren Software, our sole focus is developing and implementing software solutions that advance educational, research, and public service administration. Contact us to see how our cost effective, flexible solutions can give your team the tools necessary to accomplish effective grant management.