We're experienced in writing bids for Innovate UK, SBRI, NIHR, H2020, DASA and many other calls.Find out how we can help your business
Our bid writing team combine experience across industries to provide industry leading bid writing and grant funding support. Applying for grant funding is time consuming and can be a distraction to business as normal activities. Let our team identify, prepare and submit grant funding applications on your behalf, allowing you to focus on what you do best – managing and leading your growing company.Explore our unique, full service bid writing
It’s important that we fully understand your project, the competitive landscape, market potential and company position within the marketplace. Once we have gained an insight into your unique position, we act as a critical friend to ensure that your proposition is truly ground-breaking and that you have the project team / collaborators in place to increase your chance of success.
We continuously horizon scan to identify forthcoming and newly released grant funding opportunities. This includes calls released by larger organisations (e.g., Innovate UK, NIHR, DASA) and many smaller niche opportunities. Our team are experts at finding the grants that provide the best opportunities for your innovation to flourish.
We support you through each stage of the application process. Not only do we take the lead on grant writing and the preparation of supporting appendices, but we also help you to develop a robust project plan and sense check your project finances. We can even navigate the submission portal and upload the final proposal on your behalf.
Are there enough people who will benefit from your innovation? Can you back this up with market data? Is the market potential sufficient to warrant an ambitious and costly R&D project?
Is your idea truly world leading? Are you a trailblazer? Will you proposal lead to an innovation step change rather an incremental improvement to the status quo?
Do you have freedom to operate? Have you conducted a FTO review? Do you have a solid plan regarding how to protect and exploit your IP?
Looking beyond your sales projections, have you considered the wider societal benefits? Can you quantify the wider expected economic, social and environmental impacts?
Do you want to start the project next month? Have you factored in the application review and grant acceptance timescales? Are you aware that you can only claim for eligible costs incurred and paid between the official project start and end dates?
Are you the sole applicant or would a consortium approach be stronger? Could your team be strengthened through industrial or academic partnerships? Have you considered partners across your value chain?
Grants are normally paid quarterly in arrears; can you provide assurance of your ability to match fund?
Are you an undertaking in difficulty? Are you aware that most grant funders are unable to award grants to organisations meeting the condition known as undertakings in difficulty?
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The competition guidance usually includes a detailed breakdown of the scored application questions, word limits and page limits of supporting appendices. It’s important that you carefully read and distil the guidance. If the competition body has been kind enough to provide a breakdown of the information sought as part of each scored question, use this as a guide when structuring your response.
Appendices may be “optional” but in reality, they aren’t; your competitors will no doubt use the additional space to their advantage.
The assessors are looking for proposals that present a viable opportunity for growth, high risk technical innovation and a credible team with robust commercialisation plans. Clear and concise responses are essential, as is quantification and justification of underlying assumptions.
The fund holder appoints a panel of independent assessors, each of which has relevant sector expertise, knowledge and experience. Applications are typically assessed by a panel of up to five industrial and academic assessors. Assessor scores and feedback are reviewed to ensure that the assessors adhere to guidelines and score fairly.
Assessors are required to sign a contractual assessor agreement which covers confidentiality, declarations of interest and conflicts of interest.
This varies and is usually dependent upon two factors: a) the size and type of organisation making the application and b) the stage of research and development. The precise details are usually set out in the competition guidance, it’s always best to double check rather than make assumptions.
Typical grant percentages:
The celebrations begin in earnest. In parallel you may be asked to provide documentation to demonstrate your ability to match fund (e.g. most recent audited/unaudited year-end financial statements or a cash Flow forecast covering the period of the project). If you have collaborators you will need to produce a signed collaboration agreement (its good practice to give this some consideration during the application stage, particularly if it needs to be signed off by legal teams). Document requests may also include an exploitation plan and revised second level project delivery plan (providing the Monitoring Officer with the level of detail required to monitor project progress).
Don’t despair, when one door closes more often than not another door opens. If your application isn’t successful you can usually reapply, for example Innovate UK allows a maximum of two applications for any given proposal.
You will receive a copy of the assessor feedback, including their perceptions of the strengths and weaknesses of your initial submission responses. You may disagree with the nuances, but it’s important that you use this feedback to your advantage. If they have highlighted failings or missing information, it’s imperative that these issues are addressed as part of your resubmission. In parallel, re-review the question guidance and double check that your response answers each question in full.