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Applicant Perception Survey 2015

Survey of 2014/15 Grant Applicants – Summary of Results

Applicant Responses

  • 145 valid responses from 2014/2015 applicants again provide rich data.
  • These representatives of the not for profit sector were considerably more concerned about funding cuts and associated uncertainty, in responding to the open text questions about challenges to sustainability.
  • Just short of three quarters (72%) of respondents were providing feedback for the first time; compared to 61% of first timer respondents in the previous survey.
  • The high proportion of first time survey responders highlights that the survey does not provide for longitudinal comparison – the respondents are mostly different from survey to survey.
  • The lower response rate, combined with the higher proportion of first time respondents, may be an indication that some grant applicants feel they have responded previously, and that despite Foundation operational changes from year to year, they may feel they gave their responses ‘last year’. We hope that more respondents complete the survey each year in the future.
  • The feedback provided is again highly positive – the Foundation and its processes are very well regarded by responding applicants.

Key Results

Applicant Needs

  • The top two general funding needs identified by applicants remain the same as identified in the previous surveys of grant applicants:
    • 52% identified 'General operating support' (Vs. 44% in 2012; 55% in 2013)
    • 54% identified 'Sustaining a current program' (Vs. 64% in 2012; 50% in 2013)
  • Applicants were asked to identify Innovation projects important to them (New question in 2014):
    • 44% identified ‘Piloting or scaling up a new service model’ as of most importance
    • 30% identified ‘Applying a new approach to improving service effectiveness and/or service quality’
  • 'Fundraising' maintained its dominance as the key capacity building need of survey respondents. From a selection of 19 capacity building needs, the four most frequently identified are:
    • 60% 'Fundraising' (Vs. 52% in 2012 and 62% in 2013)
    • 38% 'Partnership Development' (Vs. 32% in 2012 and 27% in 2013)
    • 37% 'Program Development' (Vs. 36 % in 2012 and 41% in 2013)
    • 34% 'Programme Evaluation and Monitoring' (Vs. 27 % in 2012 and 36% in 2013)

Application & Grant Management Processes

  • The Foundation’s application processes are well regarded by the 2014/15 applicant respondents.
  • Of the nine issues canvassed in relation to the Foundation’s applications processes:
    • 8 received greater than 75% positive responses (Strongly Agree or Agree)
    • The single statement receiving less than 75% positive responses remains that associated with applicants understanding of application success or otherwise

Grant Effectiveness

  • Grantees remain strongly of the view that the Foundation’s grants contribute to the outputs of their projects/programs.
  • While questions relating to the Foundation’s Grant Effectiveness received lower positive ratings this year compared to last, testing indicates that these differences were not statistically significant, indicating that the differences fall within a range that could occur by chance.
  • In relation to the issue of Outputs:
    • 88% Strongly Agree or Agree that the Foundation grant helped the grantee organisation reach more clients/participants (Vs. 85% in 2012 and 90% in 2013)
    • 86% Strongly Agree or Agree that the Foundation grant helped the grantee organisation provide more services (Vs. 85% in 2012 and 94% in 2013)

Foundation Effectiveness

  • In relation to dissemination of project outcomes (Question introduced in 2013):
    • 77% Strongly Agree or Agree that it would be helpful for the Foundation to disseminate the outcomes of their project (Vs. 71% in 2013)
  • In relation to the Foundation’s impact in the field:
    • 59% Strongly Agree or Agree that the Foundation makes a positive contribution to policy development (Vs. 54% in 2012 and 60% in 2013)
      39% neutral responses - Neither agree nor disagree, or N/A
    • 69% Strongly Agree or Agree that the Foundation makes a positive contribution to knowledge sharing (Vs. 59% in 2012 and 69% in 2013)
      39% neutral responses - Neither agree nor disagree, or N/A

What will the Foundation do differently?

As a result of the 2014/15 review the Foundation will:

  • Continue to build on our Thrive program ensuring that the Foundation’s funding for core operating support and capacity building continues to help organisations to build their capacity, efficiency and sustainability.
  • Do more work to help organisations disseminate the outcomes and impact of their work. A key component of this will be the development of an online Knowledge Hub which highlights what works and, more importantly, what doesn’t.
  • Continue to grow our support for research and innovation which guides and informs good policy development.
  • Continue to develop better ways of providing feedback to grant applicants on why applications are successful or not successful.
  • Further develop our role as a convenor of cross-sectoral groups to help facilitate collaborations and partnerships