How to Track if Your Grant is Being Used Appropriately

February 27, 2023

Grantee accountability is an essential component of effective grant management. To ensure that funds are used for their intended purposes, grantees must clearly understand grant policy, procedures, and requirements; monitor activities and expenditure; and provide timely and accurate progress and financial reports.

It is important to never underestimate the importance of capturing this vital information, as doing so may jeopardise funder reputations. There are cases where the money received from government, for example, may be withdrawn due to failure to provide adequate evidence about the impact of funding activities.

There are several ways to make it easier for grantees to meet reporting requirements. This article will review these methods and other essentials to keep in mind when tracking fund use.

Setting Expectations

Understanding Grant Policy, Procedures and Requirements

As mentioned, the cornerstone of monitoring fund usage is ensuring that grantees have a clear understanding of grant policy, procedures, and requirements. Grantees must be aware of the reporting that will be expected of them and the format in which these reports should be provided. Clarity in this area not only ensures accuracy, but the timely processing of documentation.

Some research has discovered that many grantees feel that intensive reporting requirements are a sign of mistrust from funders. To maintain good rapport, grantees should understand the reasons for the level of reporting required in their case.

Timely and Accurate Reporting

Whether it’s an unconditional, contingent or reimbursable grant, multi-year or project-based, timeliness is important in reporting, especially when government funds are involved.

Grantees must provide accurate reports in accordance with deadlines and that include all required information – free of errors. Always maintain transparency by ensuring grantees understand the possible consequences of missing deadlines or providing insufficient information.

Proper record keeping helps ensure grantees are able to report accurately and they should make every effort to keep all grant documentation, including grant applications and grantor reports, in a secure location.

It is also important that grant records are easily accessible to grant management personnel at all times. Using a cloud based grant management system takes care of the above – all data is backed up automatically and securely stored for an indefinite period.


Many organisations are still using paper based reporting which leads to variability among submissions. Variability means going back and forth requesting additional information, which is not a good use of time. Software enables standardisation, with all grantees knowing exactly what information needs to be submitted, every time.


Funds should be spent against the core objectives of the grant. To ensure compliance, grant admins must challenge any expenditure that does not align with this condition. The same goes for processing claims – only those that meet the conditions should be accepted and further evidence should be request as needed.

Progress Reports

Awardees should provide regular updates about their accomplishments and overall progress. For multi-year grants, their ongoing plans should also be kept up to date, including any changes to personnel, expected delays or problems (and plans for their resolution).  From there, your organisation can perform a detailed analysis of such reports to clarify the impact that the funds are having.

Flexi-Grant handles the admin so your staff can focus on the important information within reports. One helpful feature is the Awards Data API, which connects award data with other platforms. Data also feeds into the Insights Tool, providing graphical insights for your convenience. Staff can then save their mental energy for higher level activities such as analysis and decision making.

Collaboration and Communication

Grantees must be transparent and communicative with grant management personnel. They must work in collaboration to identify any problems that may occur with the grant program’s funding and make every effort to resolve any that may arise. A Customer Relationship Management system is extremely helpful in this regard.


Audits and reviews should be conducted regularly, as they provide an opportunity to identify any inefficiencies and to correct any problems that have occurred. Our software includes always-on auditing, making it easy for authorised personnel to access the information they need so that complete traceability is ensured.

How Grant Management Software Makes Reporting Easy

The best grant management systems make it easy to track usage in various ways, including the following features:

  • A dashboard providing a visual overview of grant performance
  • Unlimited numbers of reports and report scheduling
  • The option to obtain receipts from awardees as part of their claim process
  • Integration with financial systems to manage commitments and expenditure
  • The ability to view every transaction and communication throughout the lifetime of an application
  • An embedded audit trail

Flexi-Grant features all of the above – as well as an in-built CRM system. It automatically captures data from every monitoring form your awardees submit, significantly reducing the administrative workload – no more hours wasted on manual data entry.


Accurately tracking fund use is essential for maintaining funder reputation and ensuring all parties can make progress towards their missions. Making sure grantees clearly understand expectations for what is required of them as well as what expenses are allowed is the first step, and successful collaboration in this area is made easy with a CRM system.

Grantees must submit regular progress and financial reports which staff will analyse, to establish the impact of the grant and ensure compliance. Using a cloud based grant management system provides a standardised reporting framework and makes the entire grant management process effortless – for both funders and grantees. To book a free demo of Flexi-Grant, contact us today.

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