What is TAG’s role with the Simplify Initiative?
TAG’s goal is to improve the overall effectiveness of the sector through technology so organizations can spend less time on process and more time on the purpose of their grantmaking. TAG represents foundations in the sector and serves as an independent advocate to raise awareness and promote adoption of data sharing and process improvement tools. TAG does not receive money from any of the Simplify partners or Grants Management Software vendors.
How can I learn more about the Simplify Initiative?
How can I get more help or assistance about utilizing these tools?
There is a page for each tool that includes a document you can download to learn more about the tool. Go to the Tools Landing Page and select the tool you are interested in. If you need help beyond what the document provides, TAG member organizations can contact Poney Carpenter at 607-379-1120 or firstname.lastname@example.org for technical advice and assistance.
This is great, but where do I start? Which tool,or tools, should be implemented first?
That’s difficult to answer because funders can be very different and much depends on your organization. However, these three are good ones to initially consider:
- EReporting (see: http://foundationcenter.org/gain-knowledge/foundation-data/electronic-reporting-program
- Digitalimpact.io (see: https://digitalimpact.io/ )
- GuideStar for Grant Applications (see: https://learn.guidestar.org/products/resources/guidestar-for-grant-applications ).
How do I get the leadership at my foundation to support implementing one of these tools?
You should explain the benefits of the tool and who it will benefit. You need to make the ‘business case’ to your foundation’s leadership about why the tool is important. This information is available on each tool’s landing page. If you need further information or a strategy for talking to your leadership and your organization is a TAG member, contact Poney Carpenter at 607-379-1120 or email@example.com. Poney will help you work through a cost/benefit analysis and/or an approach that has worked in other organizations.
Why should we report our grant data to the Foundation Center (through the Electronic Reporting or Reporting Commitment / HGrant projects)?
Reporting your grant data to the Foundation Center has several benefits. Although the Foundation Center already has information about your grant activity through the 990 forms obtained from the IRS, reporting your own data improves the speed at which they get the data, improves the accuracy of the data (since your grantee information is likely to be easier to interpret than that from the 990), and offers you the opportunity to add coding data to your grants which is simply not available elsewhere. This improves the data that drives all the Foundation Center’s tools. This benefits the sector by supporting better benchmarking through tools such as the Maps and Stats tools. This benefits the grantees by giving them a better profile of your work when searching for potential funders. And it benefits you, the grantmaker, by ensuring your organization is accurately represented in those tools, and by giving you free access to otherwise costly tools for looking at your own data. While full access to those tools carries an additional cost, even without that added investment your organization can help benefit yourselves, your grantees, and the sector as a whole.
How did you select the tools listed on your website? I may know of one you missed?
All of the Simplify tools support the grants management lifecycle. We have included tools for sharing funder data, tools for sharing nonprofit data and process improvement tools. There are numerous other beneficial tools available. For now, we are limiting the scope to tools to improve the grants management lifecycle.
How can I get more information?