Unless you’ve changed your program guidelines, it’s likely that you are recycling your application form from round to round. There’s nothing wrong with that, in fact, it saves a lot of time. However, a number of new features have been added to SmartyGrants over the past 6 months, making this a good time to revisit your forms and see if they need to be updated. The obvious place to begin this review/update is with your application form.
Several of the newly released SmartyGrant features will allow you to create better application forms. These include:
Your application form might begin with a page that tests for eligibility. (This is recommended as AIGM research recently found that many would-be applicants were spending time working on applications for grants they were not eligible for.) Or perhaps you have a section for collecting financial information from an organisation that is serving as an auspice for a non-incorporated applicant.
SmartyGrants has always allowed you to enable or disable form sections or pages based on the answer to a choice question. What’s new is that now you can make the disabled sections/pages completely invisible. The advantage of this is that it makes your form simpler and less cluttered for the applicant. A simpler form is an easier form and an easier form will likely elicit better responses.
To use the new functionality, create conditional logic on your sections or pages just as you did before. Once you’ve saved your form, go to Form Settings. Next to the heading Conditional logic settings, there’s a button which will allow you to show or hide the parts of the form that aren’t applicable.
SmartyGrants has added a new contact field for recording bank details and has upgraded address functionality. Address questions are now displayed as one line. Predictive text will offer applicants likely answers once they start typing. More importantly, you now have the option of displaying addresses on a map.
If you have a predefined (and not always obvious) geographic eligibility area, this feature can be useful.
Finally, if you’ve been using your form for a while, it probably has the old style of grids on the budget page. You’ll want to replace those with those with the new grids.
The new grids load into your form with a separate section for totals. This is important because it makes the totals reportable. Simply add a new grid question and delete the old one.
Refreshing your application form is a simple way to make things easier for your potential applicants. Don’t be afraid of using the features SmartyGrants offers. If you would like assistance updating your application forms, please contact me at Kate@katecaldecott.com.au or 0447 227 598.
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Kate Caldecott worked with me on Australia Post’s Our Neighbourhood Community Grants program. She assisted with the grant process design and SmartyGrants grant management implementation.
In working with Kate, I would describe her as being: passionate, knowledgeable, dedicated to community with a willingness to going the extra mile, above and beyond. It is always a pleasure to work with Kate.- Erin McKenzie, Community Events and Partnerships Advisor, Community Relations Australia Post
This is the perfect opportunity for me to thank you, in particular, ….. for the outstanding customer service you have all provided. You have not only helped us use SG effectively, but kept the panic at bay. There is lots more to learn about what SG can do and I’m sure we will be in regular contact …….
Thanks to you all – you are fabulous!- Debra Slater-Lee, Programs Manager State NRM Office (WA)
Being a complete newbie on all aspects of Smartygrants I was daunted by the task of being completely responsible for the outcome of a major grant funding round at the Shire. I did the training and it still did not make much sense to me until I had my first session with Kate. The way in which Kate was able to clarify, explain and help me understand the rationale and functions of the system was brilliant, her manner always patient and professional, and her willingness to transfer knowledge and information commendable. Thanks to Kate I am now a confident user of Smartygrants- Marilyn A Gippsland VIC
Kate’s involvement in the final stages of the major review of two of Sunshine Coast Council’s funding programs added significant value to our work. As well as identifying additional sources of information for analysis, and suggesting enhancements to data presentation, Kate provided a professional critique of the review, validating our analysis of the review findings and the options identified in our report to Council.- Margaret Cattanach Team Leader Community Connections Community Services Sunshine Coast Council
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