Trending in 2018*

Two trends developing in grants and funding in 2018 will be greater scrutiny of your project and shorter deadlines for submission. 

The reason, when governments are coming into an election mode like the Australian Government, New South Wales and Victoria, or have just been elected, as in Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania, there is a spotlight on risk.  

The intensity of the election process, the potential to be asked difficult questions, the need to look like decisions are fair in the allocation of funding, are all risk factors that the state and federal governments consider in decision making.  

The way of reducing their risk, and increasing your chance of success, is to have a project which has the full set of documentation, considers all aspects of the funding providers risk, not yours, and is going to provide outcomes for the government that you are applying to.  

The trend to shorter deadlines in 2018 is illustrated with the last round of Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF), which was open for 6 weeks just prior to Christmas. In the early versions of this program, National Stronger Regions Fund, the rounds were open for 3 months.
The reason for the shorter deadline is increased competition. Where there are so many applications for limited funding, over 500 applications for round two of BBRF, providing so much choice, it is much easier for the assessors to only consider projects that are shovel ready. This is not only shovel ready at the time of the application, but the requirement for signing a funding deed within 12 weeks of the announcement has been introduced as well.  

In earlier rounds the requirement was within 12 months, not 12 weeks. Short deadlines mean that your project needs to be funding ready before the grant program opens.

Just like risk, you need the full set of documentation and the proof and evidence that you are ready at the time of the application.
Being funding ready before the grant program opens will increase your chance of success, and has the added benefit of reducing your stress when the application process opens.

*Copy supplied by Section 51