What is a Grant Proposal Form?

A grant proposal form is an engaging and well-structured business document prepared by proposal writers and professionals who need grants for the funding of their business, education, research project, or non-profit program. It contains a need statement, main goals and objectives, activities, evaluation methods, and budget. Proposal writers create engaging grant proposals by pulling all these key elements together and organizing them in a logical and systematic plan to make their projects enticing to prospective funders. 

According to a report published by the National Center for Charitable Statistics, there are more than 1.5 million non-profit organizations registered in the United States. There exists an increase of over 10% between 2005 and 2015. This means each of those foundations and non-profit groups would have to award 17 grants for all non-profit organizations in the U.S., receiving only one award. Plus, the statistics reveal that a grant writer with a 20% success rate gets a favorable response to only 20 out of every 100 applications submitted. Being a fiercely competitive process every year, it is integral for proposal writers, project managers, product developers, researchers, educators, and many other technical proposal writers in other fields and industries to develop a captivating and one-of-a-kind formal proposal form for grants. 

Grant Proposal Form Examples

There are eclectic examples and kinds of grant proposal forms used by many project managers, researchers, and proposal writers in various fields and sectors such as business, education, scientific research, projects, and non-profit organizations. What are some common examples of grant proposal forms? 

1. College Education Grant Proposal Form

A college education grant proposal form is a type of grant proposal developed by educators, college instructors, and other academic professionals in colleges and other educational establishments that offer higher education when they seek grants and funding for their college programs and projects. Specify the primary details such as the name of the principal investigator or project director, department/program, college campus contact details, project title, funding organization, program name, grant request, type of application, and type of project. Include the start and end date and submission deadline of the proposal. Briefly describe your project and indicate if there are new positions needed, if other organizations are involved and if a college contribution is required.

2. Research Grant Proposal Form

Create a compelling research grant proposal form for the funding of your research project. A research and development team is only required to make one grant application each grant round. The principal grant applicant should be employed and hold a position in a specific medical institution or university and at least one individual of the research grant applicant group should be a current member of the national research grant association. Follow the specific guidelines for grant applications. Include in your research grant proposal form the details of the principal applicant such as the title and name, institution, present position of the principal applicant, contact address, telephone, and e-mail. Add some details of the collaborators such as the titles and names of co-applicants and their institutions. Most importantly, write the title of the project in a maximum of 25 words.

3. Small Business Grant Proposal Form

A small business grant proposal form is a formal written document to request a potential funder willing to provide grant money or financial assistance to a startup or small business in order to establish or expand its business. Applicants need to meet the eligibility requirements stated in the grant proposal guidelines. The common types of small business grants are federal grants, state grants, and local grants. Clearly state the history and mission of your small business, what the grant money will be used for, a detailed budget, the significant impact the grant will have, and the financial stability of the organization. Also, enclose a grant application cover letter in the business grant proposal form. 

4. Non-Profit Grant Proposal Form

Develop an engaging non-profit grant proposal form to help your non-profit organization be awarded grants for a special program or purpose. Typically, grant makers such as corporations, government agencies, and corporations focus on giving grants to specific nonprofits like animal shelters or environmental groups and particular types of support such as equipment funding or program development. Other types of nonprofit grants are operating support or unrestricted funding and capital support. Take note that grant-based funding must be part of a diversified fundraising plan. Most fundraising experts recommend that no more than 20% of your funding comes from grants because any more than that will increase the risk of organizational failure if a major grant goes downhill.

Essential Components of a Grant Proposal Form

If your business, non-profit organization, or research group needs to secure or raise funds to implement your planned projects or programs carefully, a great solution for you is to prepare a grant application. Analyze if a grant application is really the effective method if you need to fund your desired campaign or project. Consider the essential components of an impressive grant proposal form.

Grant Application Cover Letter: Write a professional cover letter for your grant proposal as you prove that you understand the goals, priorities, and interests of the funder and express how your project or program aligns with their mission and vision. When writing a cover letter, use a formal header, introduce your organization like the title, purpose, and values of your organization, and discuss the core purpose of your project. Emphasize the reasons why you are seeking funding and point out the potential impact of the funding. Table of Contents: Construct a table of contents section to guide your grant maker in flipping properly to the specific section they want to see. Be professional and simple while outlining the respective sections, headings, subheadings, and page numbers. Abstract/Executive Summary: Showcase the primary components of your grant application in a condensed and persuasive format. Also known as a project description, write an executive summary to introduce your project goals, preliminary findings, and the key individuals involved. Include a statement about the wide-ranging implications for your prospective customers, the target population, and society in three to four sentences. Aim for having a one-page executive summary or four to six paragraphs. Need Statement and Problem Statement: Elaborate on the needs and problems that your business, project, research work, or the program will fulfill and solve. What is the scope of the problem or issue? What will your business, project, research work, or program do that someone has not or cannot easily perform in the future? Answer these questions concisely and direct-to-the-point while proving why your work is important and that you need the grant to develop and execute your work efficiently. Methodology and Project Management Plan: Demonstrate the activities and tasks that will be carried out to achieve the goals, objectives, and desired outcomes. Provide a basic description of your project management plan.Timeline or Schedule: Indicate the start and end date of your project and significant project milestones. Insert a visual timeline to display exactly where everything fits into the project management plan and when each task will be carried out. Design striking graphic representations such as charts, diagrams, tables, process maps, and other data visualization tools. Budget: Define the costs required to accomplish the activities you have stated in the grant proposal form. Clarify which of those costs are to be paid by the funder you are addressing, and which costs may be covered by other sources. Follow the standard guidelines when preparing a grant proposal budget for personnel costs, indirect costs, travel, and per diem. Evaluation Plan: Tell your prospects how you are going to measure success or evaluate for your business, project, research work, or program and how often you will perform an evaluation (monthly, quarterly, or annually). Give a date for an in-depth evaluation and let them know when they can expect feedback.

How to Write a Grant Proposal Form

To make a compelling and successful grant proposal, you need to have a full picture of the grant writing process. Despite the reports that revealed success rates in grant writing can be as low as 1 in 10 applicants, remember that you need to build and compile a lot of information including many specific documents, give yourself enough time to learn and practice grant writing, and use online tools that streamline grant writing system. Understand all of the ins and outs, as well as the crucial steps of this multifaceted process.

Step 1: Create a Catchy Project Title

Since you are requesting funds for a specific business, research project, or program, you need to ensure that your project title encompasses what you are planning to achieve. Make a catchy and enticing title to help attract the interest of the grant maker review team and other prospective grantors or funders.

Step 2: Develop the Executive Summary and Organizational Background

Give a brief and compelling introduction to your proposed business, research project, or program. State the target population, timeline, and a general description of your proposed business or project. Make sure that this section captivates the attention of the grantmakers. Follow the standard guidelines of the appropriate length or word or character limits for each section in a grant proposal form. For the organization’s background, describe the history, mission, vision, and purpose of your organization.

Step 3: Include Needs Statement

Explain the specific needs of the people or your target population. Write a well-defined statement of need or needs assessment as you determine their needs. Back up the need with accurate and solid data using demographics and survey results. Align your needs statement with your proposed business or project to show the funder why your proposal is worthwhile.

Step 4: Describe the Project Implementation Plan and Evaluation Plan

Structure a clear description or narrative of your project implementation plan. Broaden the information of your proposed business or project which you emphasized in the executive summary. Tell the full story of your grant project proposal to clarify to the grant maker what you are seeking funding for. Add a simple timeline of all the activities and tasks that will be implemented in the project. Also, include a grant proposal evaluation plan to allow your grant maker to see how you plan to measure the development and success of your project.

Step 5: Detail the Budget

Indicate how funds from the grant maker will be used. Include in the budget section the details of funding from other sources that include additional grants, in-kind donations, volunteers, and many others. Add the total project cost and point out how much is requested from the prospective funder. Use a budget spreadsheet to outline this section.

Step 6: Prepare the Final Grant Proposal Form

Skim the outline of your grant proposal form and double-check the grant application. Make sure that you include all the necessary forms and necessary attachments. Check the page number and font size requirements if you followed the standard guidelines and presented the essential documents accordingly. Focus on the character and word limits. Ask help from other staff members to review your grant proposal. Proofread, edit and revise the document carefully if necessary. Lastly, prepare the final grant proposal form.


What is the most crucial feature of a grant proposal form?

The most crucial feature of a grant proposal is the needs statement or statement of need. This part assists the grantmaker in understanding why your business or research project is worth funding. It highlights the importance of your project in various aspects, especially how it is beneficial to everyone who will be involved in it.

What are the essential components of a grant proposal?

The essential components of a grant proposal form are the abstract or executive summary, introduction, need statement, SMART goals and objectives, methodology or activities, project cost or budget, and evaluation if necessary. 

What are some common examples of grant proposal forms?

Some examples of grant proposal forms are grant proposal transmittal form, grant requirement form, grant proposal submission form, college grant proposal processing form, academic grant proposal form, faculty seed grant proposal form, investigator grant proposal form, grant program proposal form, assessment grant proposal form, empowerment grant proposal form, full grant proposal form, project grant proposal form, community college grant proposal form, preliminary grant proposal form, classroom education grant proposal form, grant research proposal form.

How many objectives should a grant proposal have?

A grant proposal should have three objectives and not any more than that. The objectives must be clear, concise, and realistic.

How to increase my chances of getting a grant?

Increase your chances of getting a grant by checking grant funding sources as you identify funding opportunities on social media, and explaining how your research idea connects to and expands on published experiments and theories. Next, collaborate with the program officer and ask for an honest assessment from them so that you can gain specific feedback about the scope, originality, and feasibility of the research. Ask for help from your institution or university grants office. Create a strong and striking description of your research. Identify your audience and send your grant application right away.

Create an enticing and thought-provoking grant proposal to boost your chances of getting sufficient funding for your startup business, research project, or non-profit organization.  Jumpstart your knowledge and insight into grant proposal writing when you read through informative how-to guides and search for ready-made grant proposal form templates. We have sample well-designed grant proposal form templates that you can easily download and use such as grant proposal submission forms, college grant proposal processing forms, technology grant proposal forms, grant program proposal forms, assessment grant proposal forms, and empowerment grant proposal forms.