Competition for grants is fierce, and resources are finite.
Enlisting the help of trained, experienced grant researchers, writers and managers gives you the advantage you need to secure funding that furthers your mission. We can help your grants program be the best it can be, from initial opportunity identification to research, writing and development, management and third party evaluation.
Explore how we can assist with the topics below:
Grant Opportunity Identification
Did you know that there are currently more than 2300 grant funding opportunities posted on grants.gov alone? And those are only federal grants—there are countless other grants available from community and private foundations, whose combined funding totaled $54.7 billion in 2013, according to the Foundation Center.
These grants span an incredibly diverse range of topic areas, aiming to fund projects like secure cyberspaces, conservation cooperatives and initiatives in workforce development. Most have very specific requirements—for example, the grantee might need to be a nonprofit, or might have to be located within an urban center. Sifting and sorting through these numerous grant opportunities can quickly become a full-time job, and most grant-seeking organizations can’t afford full-time grants managers. Consequently, organizations often rush to apply without performing due diligence, resulting in a poor grantee/funder match and a denied grant application.
That kind of approach wastes everyone’s time and energy.
Having seasoned, trained grant managers on your side can increase your chances of winning the funding that you need to support your organization and its mission. Our professional staff are experienced at effectively matching the focus of your organization with an appropriate grant’s eligibility criteria. Since we constantly operate in the world of grant services, we become aware of new opportunities early and often.
The result? You’re more competitive for the opportunities presented to you, and your staff stays focused on their own core tasks.
Grant Needs Assessment/Research
The foundation of any successful grants program is a solid needs assessment. What is your current situation, as opposed to the ideal? What plan of action would allow you to best move from one state to the other?
A needs assessment should be objective and impartial; it should also be grounded in research, primarily from data collection and analysis and a review of current literature.
Our team of trained researchers can help to refine and focus the needs assessment process, creating a well-researched proposal for funding that clearly identifies the impact that the program you plan to implement will have in the real world. This proven process enables the strongest possible grant application, with specific, attainable, relevant and measurable goals.
The grants team at IES leverages all of the academic and professional resources of a major research institution for the benefit of your grants program. Grounded solidly in data and current theory, our approach truly offers your organization the best foundation for your proposal narrative.
Grant Proposal Writing and Development
Demand for grant funding continues to exceed supply, and as a result, awards have become increasingly difficult to win. It is important to not only identify the best grant opportunities, but also produce high-quality, compelling proposals that win a higher volume of grants.
Including highly qualified, experienced and accomplished grant writers in the development of your proposal can give you a decisive competitive edge.
We offer both technical assistance and leadership in research, program design and grant proposal writing. Our level of involvement is based on your unique needs and capacities; our services range from assisting your grant writing team with editing and review, to leading and coordinating the entire endeavor.
Grant Management and Compliance
Every funding agency, whether federal or private, handles the grant-making process differently. No matter who the funder is, grant management is a critical aspect of both the grant application and the funding process. Strong grant proposals incorporate grant compliance into the project design.
Prior to submitting your grant proposal, it’s critical to ensure the expenses and program activities included in the proposal are qualified by the funder and supported with appropriate documentation. Once the grant has been awarded, it is equally important to ensure that effective tracking and reporting processes and procedures keep your grant status in good standing.
These critical details can easily slip through the cracks, but our trained staff can improve outcomes by setting up your grant program for compliance—and for success.
Our agility sets us apart from other grant services teams, who often take a one-size-fits-all approach.
Based on your needs and a your project’s parameters, we choose a quality system framework to guide the development of a sound and systematic evaluation plan. This may include pre-intervention assessments, logic models and preliminary evaluation design, formative and summative evaluation processes, developmental evaluation perspectives, post-intervention assessments and plans and/or capacity building for long-term self evaluation and growth.
Then, we connect objective research questions with your workplan activities. This highly specialized process brings together objective-oriented evaluation questions with your goals and activities, and allows us to be uniquely responsive to your needs.
Who We Are
Our expertise in education, business and industry, healthcare, military and government agencies spans the subject matter spectrum.
IES is the engineering-based, solutions-driven, client-focused unit of NC State University. Our broad portfolio and deep industry experience help organizations grow, innovate and prosper.Our extensive partnerships with business, industry, education and government generate a unique culture of collaboration that provides access to cutting-edge expertise, research and technology.
Specific skill sets include:
- Government and industry grant programs including NSF, TAACCCT, HEA, and U.S. DOL
- Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) and the measures required by WIOA, including measures such as credentialing
- Attainment, achieving measurable skill gains enrolled in an education or training program, and effectiveness of core programs in serving employers
- Delivering services for large scale projects
- Demonstrated adaptability to develop practical, but rigorous, evaluation plans
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Fiona M. Baxter, Ph.D.
Associate Executive Director, Knowledge Management
Dr. Baxter provides leadership in the development of an IES Evaluation Center, which will conduct performance evaluation, research, planning and assessment for both educational and workforce development programs.
Assistant Director, Research Development and Evaluation
Dominick serves as a project manager for third-party evaluation projects, coordinating interactions and reporting functions between the evaluation team and evaluation clients.
John Dorris, Ed.D.
Director of Strategic Resource Development/Evaluation & Assessment
provides leadership on strategy, research and data analysis efforts related to workforce development and engagement, including organizational learning and emerging trends in evaluation.