Still having fun and, GLM, you're still the one
July 29, 2018

Still having fun and, GLM, you're still the one

Gwenn Gebhard | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Grant Lifecycle Manager

I am the Executive Director of the Luther I. Replogle Foundation. I am the only employee of the Foundation, I work part-time, and I report to a Board of six Directors. The Foundation has an endowment of $11.7 million and we distribute about $500,000 in grants to non-profits. The Foundation follows several guidelines to make decisions as to how to allocate the grants. We use Grant Lifecycle Manager (GLM) for ALL of the grant management. I am the primary user of the licensed software, however, my Board members use it periodically to rate the grant requests before their Board Meetings. One significant problem that is addresses is that grant requests can be tracked, and paperwork and recordkeeping does not get stalled on my desk in hard copy. Requests enter the system through the Foundation's website on GLM, I review the Letters of Inquiry and Applications on line, I respond to all the LOIs and Applications on line (through email set up through GLM), I can see all the records of past grants, including historic grants pre-dating 2010 when we started using GLM. I do almost all the work of the Replogle Foundation using GLM.
  • Grant requests arrive at the Foundation only through the web. We do not accept hard copy Letters of Inquiry or Applications. This means nothing gets lost! And I can do the reviews at my office or at home. Previous to GLM, it was difficult to log and to track the grant requests because we get a lot BUT I have limited amount of time manage them. There are several software packages out there that now do this function, but Foundant was one of the first and continues to be the best at it. They have a continuous development process and respond to customer comments and requests regularly and frequently.
  • GLM allows the Foundation to keep historical grant records in the cloud, with two benefits. (1) We have been able to eliminate hard copy records. The only hard copy records we keep at this point are the Foundation's Board Meeting minutes and the 990-PF Tax Returns. (2) It is easy to search and recover information regarding grants or requests that took place 5 years in the past or 8 years in the past. This ability has proven itself useful several times.
  • The GLM user community is diverse and very helpful. As a solo employee, I find that the GLM user community is an extraordinary resource of knowledge and savvy. I hardly ever have to "re-invent the wheel," because someone else has more than likely had to deal with the same issue. And if not, the community is able to rally with suggestions.
  • Foundant Technologies, the owner and manager of GLM, is a responsive company with a depth of knowledge and experience in the database field and the philanthropy field. A significant reason of why I think that GLM is the best software for my purposes is that the support provided by the company seems to be endless and extraordinarily smart.
  • I have not had a bad or even mediocre experience with Foundant or with GLM. When I don't know something and I get frustrated, I have a name and number to call who is immediately available to help (on the same day).
  • GLM has gone beyond the bounds of what I need. The company is still adding functionality for other users whose organizational needs differ slightly or enormously from mine. I hear about these new additions because I receive an email newsletter regularly with updates on new functions and uses. Sometimes I discover that there is a functionality that I didn't think about until Foundant Technologies mentioned it - and then I have a ah-ha! moment. That's fun!
  • Grant Lifecycle Manager has only a positive impact on our overall business objectives. This software package is all we use to manage grants. I work part-time, and this software allows me to get ALL the necessary work done to manage the work of the Foundation. The software has become so efficient in the last couple of years, that I now have time to do special projects as requested by the Board of Directors. I have conducted a survey of our grantees about the issues of capacity building within their own organizations and on the question of professional development. I have led workshops for our grantees on how to use GuideStar, a non-profit database that provides data on organizations all across the nation. The GLM software allows me to prepare for the twice-yearly Board Meetings with a minimum of stress and no confusion.
I used GIFTS more than 10 years ago. Their development was glacial, and it was clumsy software. They took much longer to develop the on-line application process.
I also reviewed Philan Tech. They did not offer the same flexibility that Foundant's GLM did. Nor did the company have the depth of software engineering experience that Philan Tech had at the time.
Finally, I used a back-office support company for a short time that has an on-line grant management component. This option proved to be too cumbersome and too expensive. And I did not personally get along with the staff there. Definitely not a good fit for the Replogle Foundation and me.
From where I stand, GLM is well-suited for use by small-staffed charitable foundations who make more than thirty (30) grants a year and distribute more than $500,000 in funds to non-profits. The software is able to handle every step in the grant-making process from receipt of a request, to the evaluation and decision regarding the grant, to tracking the pay-out, and to closing the grant when the work or the year is completed.