Leaving it to the Experts: Reasons to Hire a Grant Writer
You may be wondering whether your organization can handle writing its own proposal or if it’s time to enlist the help of a grant writer. There are many factors that go into the decision to hire a grant writer. It is a choice that can only be made after a careful evaluation of your organization’s capabilities and needs. To aid in your decision-making, we’ve compiled a few reasons to hire a grant writer:
When Tackling Government Grants
Government grants have strict requirements and guidelines that can make the writing process more grueling and leave more room for error on the grant writer’s part. You’re organization should consider hiring a grant writer who is already familiar with the requirements and granting process of the government organization you’re seeking funds from (i.e. the Department of Education, Environmental Protection Agency, or National Institutes of Health).
If the Constraints of a Proposal are Daunting
Many organizations have no problem articulating their mission and funding vision, but feel limited when trying to express their vision within the proposal format or formal language. It’s a grant writer’s job to take an organization’s mission and goals and fit them into the requirements of a proposal.
If You’re a Newbie
If this is one of your first grants, working with a grant writer can give you invaluable insight into grant writing. You can study their process and get a feel for the types of proposals a professional can produce. After a few proposals, you may feel more comfortable going it on your own.
When Time or Resources are Limited
Your organization may be perfectly capable of writing a grant, but there just isn’t enough time or staff to do so. This is the perfect time to hire a grant writer to ease the time commitment needed to prepare a proposal. Also consider that while you may have time to write a grant, completing your organization’s work may take precedence. If you think your time and expertise would be better spent on other projects, consider hiring a grant writer.
When Your Budget Allows
If your organization doesn’t have the money to pay a grant writer, do not hire one in the hopes that winning a grant will help to make up the deficit. For one, hiring a grant writer does not guarantee funding. Keep in mind that it is also considered unethical for a grant writer to charge clients based on a commission paid from the grant itself. Only hire a grant writer if it won’t be a financial burden to your organization.
When You’re Looking for Large Sums
You have to consider the cost of hiring a grant writer versus the benefit. If you’re applying for larger sums, you may pay a fair amount for a grant writer, but you are also likely to get a lot back from the grant.
Many different factors go into the decision to hire a grant writer. Each organization will have it’s own unique needs and capabilities. If you feel that your organization would like a grant writer, read our post on what to look for when hiring a grant writer. Once you’ve found the perfect match, be sure to check out our tips for successfully working with a grant writer.