So you’re interested in being a grant writer? It’s a great way to put your writing skills to use for a variety of organizations that need funding, from small nonprofits to research universities.

Or maybe you’re looking to hire a grant writer. Either way, grant writers play a key role in applying for and winning funding.

And writing isn’t the only skill to look for!

Here are 7 traits of great grant writers, whether you’re hiring one or interested in becoming one:

1. Organization

Grant writers often juggle many projects and deadlines. Being highly organized makes their job easier when planning and executing complex projects.

2. Practical thinking

Looking for grants takes common sense, because you don’t want to apply for unrealistic grants or those that aren’t a good fit (no matter how appealing they are). That’s just a waste of time and resources. A good grant writer recommends which grants to apply for based on the organization’s goals and strengths. They would also understand who else needs to be involved, and how to involve them, in the entire grant management process.

3. Creativity

Not only does a good grant writer have an engaging writing style that makes proposals stand out from other applicants, but they should also have creative and innovative approaches to winning grants.

4. Basic tech skills

Some grant writers use grant management software to track the grants they submit and win for their organization. At the very least, some formatting in Microsoft Word or Google Docs may be required. Tech wizardry isn’t necessary, but basic aptitude and willingness to learn are.

5. Being detail-oriented

A successful grants writer will be a bit of a perfectionist, as they need to follow guidelines to the letter when applying for grants. If a grant proposal is not completed correctly or requested documentation is not included and does not meet the grantor’s specifications, the proposal may be disqualified.

6. Industry knowledge

Great grant writers not only have the knowledge and skills needed to do the job, but they should also be up to date on the latest information and innovations about grants, such as the best pre-award software. By keeping to the forefront of their field, they can better help win grants.

7. Persistence

A good grant writer will be devoted to the organization’s goals and ideals and will be driven to succeed in winning grants. They will persist in pursuing grants that will fit in with the organization’s research projects, even though there may be setbacks. You can’t win them all, but never give up!

Learn more about managing research grant funding with our electronic research administration software.

Ready for a career in research administration?