Grants officers consider applications for grants and decide which are worth putting forward for further consideration. Final decisions on grants are usually made by senior staff or by a committee.
Grants officers first check that an application falls within the scope of their organisation and gather further information about the application, giving the applicant advice on improving the application where necessary. The grants officer then analyses the information in order to assess the application - for very complex applications, they may need to arrange for a consultant to analyse the application before any judgement can be made. They then make a recommendation about the application and submit it to a senior staff member, a committee or board of trustees to make the final decision.
Once a decision has been reached, the grants officer informs the applicant of the result of their application and advises them on how best to proceed. They ensure that grant payments are made promptly and accurately, keep records of all applications and advise on the application status.
Other duties include dealing with general enquiries from applicants, colleagues and committee members, and possibly making presentations about the grants they offer and the procedures for applying.
There are no standard hours for this work; grants officers may work 9am to 5pm or flexitime. Flexibility in working hours is needed when working to deadlines.
Grants officers are office-based, but also spend some time away from the office when meeting applicants and consultants, visiting projects and giving presentations. A driving licence is helpful for some jobs.
To be a grants officer you should:
Grants officers are employed by local authorities, Government departments, charities, health authorities, independent grant-making trusts, the National Lottery's Big Lottery Fund, benevolent funds and large public companies.
This a small area of work but the number of grants officers is growing.
Vacancies for grants officers are advertised in the national press and voluntary sector publications. There is a lot of competition for advertised vacancies.
Grants officers can progress to senior grants officer or grants manager and then to chief officer. Some experienced grants officers become freelance advisers.
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