Compliance Tracking for Government Grants
If you’ve been awarded a government grant and it’s the first time you’ve been awarded such an honor, you may face a bit of an adjustment. Working with the government, perhaps not surprisingly, is a different animal than private-sector work. Thorough and accurate compliance tracking will be imperative for your organization’s success. Why? Compliance tracking provides the documented proof that your organization is abiding by the regulations and rules that come with the grant – and, by doing so, you’ll greatly increase the odds of becoming a government grant recipient again in the future.
Understanding the terms
Government grants aren’t one-size-fits-all. Their compliance terms vary depending upon the agency awarding the grant funds. However, most federal grants have to meet a set of common standards called the Uniform Guidance, which Jerry Bertrand, a director with Public Impact Advisors who has spent many years working in the federal grant management arena, refers to as “almost universal for federal funding.” He adds that the almost-300-page document should be required reading as part of the onboarding process for anyone new to federal grants. Alongside the Uniform Guidance is another set of regulations referred to as The Green Book. The Green Book presents “a framework for internal controls that the Uniform Guidance strongly suggests federal grant recipients follow. It gives you guidance on designing the internal control systems that will ensure compliance with federal awards,” says blogger Zubin Segal.
Bertrand recommends that federal grant recipients keep a copy of the Uniform Guidance and Green Book on hand so they may be accessed and referenced at any time throughout the grant application, receipt and management processes.
What does grant compliance actually look like? According to blogger Rachel Werner, who spent nearly seven years as a fundraiser and grant writer, grant compliance entails understanding the statutory and/or regulatory rules that govern the award the grantee has received. The grantee should review the grant requirements and track progress in meeting the milestones established in the grantor’s agreement. The grantee should have designated staff in place to manage the grants after their receipt. The grantee’s leadership should be aware of the post-grant requirements, and the organization should routinely communicate with the grantor and immediately address any issues that arise.
So what is the best approach for compliance tracking? It’s one that gives you the ability to track all of your compliance-related information in a single location. Additionally, that data should be accessible to you at any time and, preferably, from anywhere. Thankfully, mobile technology makes that possible. A mobile app eliminates the frustratingly outdated practice of filing paperwork, which then has to be located to provide the documentation government grantors require. The compliance tracking feature may be part of a broader asset tracking platform, which allows the organization in question to manage the entire lifecycle of each of their fixed assets.
While a great many organizations are looking to cut costs right now, a compliance tracking system is one investment they can’t afford not to make. Any organization lucky enough to obtain such a grant wants the partnership to be a multi-year one. Compliance tracking provides a platform to store all relevant documents, including audit and accounting information. Best-in-class compliance tracking systems provide 24/7 access to that information and enable an unlimited number of users to encourage accountability and accuracy throughout the organization. More detailed and accurate data, in turn, can encourage continued grant funding and accomplishment of the organization’s goals.
Asset Panda’s powerful, completely customizable mobile app enables organizations to easily track and manage their grant information and maintain compliance to ensure success.