There are four steps required to become a grant administrator: post-secondary training, related work experience, applying for a job, and completing the job interview process. A grant administrator works in a post-secondary educational institution, government agency, granting agency, or research institute. A grant administrator is responsible for identifying grants, completing the application process, and ensuring that all the conditions of the grant are met. A grant is money provided by a third party to fund research.
People who are naturally organized, are excellent communicators, and are able to balance conflicting priorities find this role rewarding and energizing. This is not a suitable role for someone who prefers to work independently and is not detail-oriented. This role is filled with time sensitive processes that must be met to secure funding for ongoing research.
The first requirement to become a grant administrator is to complete a post-secondary education program. There is no specific program to become a grant administrator, but a program in office administration provides the training necessary for this role. This type of program is available from a wide range of community and career colleges.
Related work experience includes office assistant, office manager, or any other type of administrative role. Many people who work in the not-for-profit sector gain experience in applying for grants, and may find that this experience is helpful when applying to become a grant administrator.
When applying for a job as a grant administrator, be sure to proofread your resume and cover letter, double-checking for any grammar or spelling mistakes. Read the details of the job posting with care and try to tailor your cover letter to the specific needs. Accuracy is critical in the role, as all procedures must be followed correctly, or the application will be denied.
During the job interview process, take the time to prepare for the interview. Think of a list of standard interview questions and prepare your answers in advance. Think about your answers, stay calm, and be sure to answer the question that was asked.
Grant administrators can find employment opportunities with either the grant applicant institution or the grant issuing institution. These tend to be large agencies or companies. Most grants are issued by government agencies or dedicated charities. For example, public broadcasting television in the United States is funded through a combination of donations and grants from private and public groups who feel this service meets their criteria.