FAQs



Frequently Asked Questions 


 
Applying for grants for the first time
Individual Artists
Organizations
Completing a SFAC and GFTA grant application
Can I save my work and come back to it later?
Can I use formatting like bold, italics, and bullets in my application answers?
Is there a limit to how long my answers can be?
Can I use html formatting in my application narrative?
How do I save the answers I have already completed in the application?
I accidently submitted my application. What do I do?
The work I did is missing? What happened?
Can I print my application?

User Profiles
Can more than one person be associated with an Organizational Profile?
I am a grant writer working for multiple organizations. Do I have to register more than once in the GMS?
Can I use the same password for multiple user accounts?
Can I change the user information for my Organizational Profile's primary account?
Will SFAC and GFTA staff review my application and provide feedback for my draft application? 
Can I submit my application and support materials as hard copies via mail or fax?
Can I include hyperlinks for the support material requirements?
Can I make changes to my Organizational Profile?
Will I need to create a new user name and organizational profile every year?
Will grant review panelists be able to view the support materials found in my Organizational Profile?
Is there a preferred internet browser that works best with Grants Online?
Can I skip around between sections in the application?
How are grant applications reviewed and scored?
Can I copy and paste my responses in to the grant application online?
Can my organization apply for more than one SFAC and GFTA's grant program?
How do I get a copy of the grant application?
Can my organization apply for a grant from SFAC and GFTA?

Submitting an Application
Before submitting your grant application
What happens to your application?
Storing your data

Usernames and Passwords
My username and password are not working

Uploading Files
Support Materials
Cloud Storage
Specifications

Why does my work session keep timing out?
 
 

 Applying for grants for the first time

To apply to one or more grants with SFAC and GFTA, you must create a profile in our Grants Management System (“GMS”). Your profile will allow you to apply for grants with SFAC and GFTA from year to year. To register, click the Sign Up button to complete the form. You will create a User Name and password that you will use to access current and past grant applications each year.

Individual Artists
You must register as an individual user.

Organizations
If you are registering on behalf of an organization for a SFAC and GFTA grant, you will first set-up your individual user account followed by completing an organization profile in the GMS before you will be able to access any open applications.
 
For other funding opportunities, please visit our websites San Francisco Arts Commission and San Francisco Grants for the Arts.

Completing a SFAC and GFTA grant application


Can I save my work and come back to it later?
Yes, you can work on your application over time. GMS will save your work so you can sign out and come back to it at another time. Make sure to save your work after each section.

Can I use formatting like bold, italics, and bullets in my application answers?
If you decide to work on your answers in Microsoft Word, or another word processing software, before pasting the answers in to the Grants Online system, do not bold, italicize, underline, bullet, number, indent or use any other formatting options. Formatting does not transfer into the GMS well and will cause your text to become illegible. 

Is there a limit to how long my answers can be?
Yes. Pay attention to the character tracker that appears below each narrative box of the application. The character count in the GMS includes spaces and punctuation. SFAC and GFTA require that all application answers fit within this character count limit. Be clear and brief in your answers. The panelists will appreciate your clarity. 

Can I use html formatting in my application narrative?
No. Do not use html formatting in your narrative. If you use html in the narrative text, your application will include stray symbols that will make it hard for the panelists to review your application.

How do I save the answers I have already completed in the application?
The recently redesigned user interface in the GMS saves your work automatically as you make edits to the application. However, we recommend you click 'Save' after each section to save your work.

I accidently submitted my application. What do I do?
Please contact us.

The work I did is missing? What happened?
If you return to your application or go to another section and you cannot see any data, the issue might be one of the following:
  1. Your computer may have cached an older version of the page, meaning that your computer saved a snapshot of the page and it has not yet been updated. You can update the page manually by holding down the “Shift” button on your keyboard while clicking the “Refresh” or “Reload” button in your browser. This action forces the system to retrieve data that was saved successfully in the database and bring it back to the text boxes in the application.
  2. You are not logged in to the system. If your Internet connection is disrupted, the system will automatically log you out when you attempt to save work, preview the page, or move to another section of your application. If this is the problem, return to the Welcome Page and log in to the system, then return to the page where you left off. If you saved your work, the data will reappear.
  3. You have blocked cookies. GMS requires cookies. If your cookies are blocked, you must unblock them in order to allow access to application content. If you have purchased software that specifically blocks cookies, such as CookiePal, you must disable this software in order to allow cookies for the GMS to work correctly.
Can I print my application?
 Yes, clicking the Print Icon allows you to print a hard copy of your complete application, or individual pages. The Print Icon can be found in the My Data tab. To the right of the application you wish to print, you will find a printer icon. We strongly recommend that you keep a printed or digital copy of your application after you have submitted it to SFAC and GFTA for review.
 

User Profiles

Can more than one person be associated with an Organizational Profile?
Yes, more than one Registered User can be associated with an Organization. This enables multiple Users to work on a grant application. To add non-Primary Users to your account, click on the person icon on the top right hand side of the screen to access the My Account screen. Click the 'Manage Users' option. Next, select Add Users and enter the required information for that non-Primary User. An email will be sent to that User with instructions on how to activate their account. 
 
I am a grant writer working for multiple organizations. Do I have to register more than once in the GMS?
Yes, it is recommended that independent grant writers and consultants working with various organizations create separate, unique Usernames that can easily identify each client organization. eg: JoeSymphony, JoeBallet, JoeOpera
 
Can I use the same password for multiple user accounts?
Yes.
 
Can I change the user information for my Organizational Profile's primary account?
Yes. 
To edit your account info: Log in, then click on the person icon on the top right hand side of the screen. In the My Account screen, you can edit your user contact info and organizational info. You can also approve non-Primary Users (if applicable), and review your history log, showing the account's log-in activity.
 
Will SFAC and GFTA staff review my application and provide feedback for my draft application? 
No, Please refer to the SFAC and GFTA Grants Program Calendar for review deadlines.
 
Can I submit my application and support materials as hard copies via mail or fax?
No. All grant applications must be completed in the GMS. Please contact SFAC and GFTA if you need any assistance in converting your materials to an accepted file format.
 
Can I include hyperlinks for the support material requirements?
Yes. Hyperlinks to websites, programs, videos, etc. should be submitted in the text box.
 
Can I make changes to my Organizational Profile?
Yes. We encourage you to periodically update your Organizational Profile, especially when changes have occurred among your personnel. At a minimum, your Organizational Profile should be updated on an annual basis. 

Will I need to create a new user name and organizational profile every year?
No, once you have created a User Name and Organizational Profile, the information remains in the GMS until such time that you request that SFAC and GFTA deactivate the account.
 
Will grant review panelists be able to view the support materials found in my Organizational Profile?
No. Panelists will only have access to any support materials you include in the section titled 'Support Materials' of each application. 
 
Is there a preferred internet browser that works best with Grants Online?
We recommend downloading Mozilla's Firefox, Safari, or Google Chrome. All are free internet browsers which work great with the GMS.

Can I skip around between sections in the application?
Yes, Grants Online has recently redesigned their user interface to include a navigation bar on the left hand side of screen. Each section of the applications is linked in this side bar. We recommend that you save each section as you make edits before you skip to another section.
 
How are grant applications reviewed and scored?
Grant applications are reviewed and scored by a panel through the GMS. The panel utilizes the SFAC Scoring Rubric to determine how well the organization or project aligns with SFAC strategic goals and priorities. Please review the scoring criteria, available on the SFAC website, for what the specific criteria are for each grant category. Applicants are invited to attend the panel review dates. The date and time for these reviews will be emailed to you in advance so that you can make arrangements to attend. At the end of the panel review day, scores are tallied. Funding decisions are not finalized until the Commission approves the award amounts.
 
Can I copy and paste my responses in to the grant application online?
You may compose your answers in another word processing program like Microsoft Word, but we strongly recommend first transferring this text into a text-only utility like Notepad before pasting it into the grant form. This will delete hidden formatting so that the text will show up clearly in the application form.
 
Can my organization apply for more than one SFAC and GFTA's grant program?
Your organization may be eligible to apply to more than one grant program. Please see the SFAC and GFTA Grants Guidelines for restrictions. 

How do I get a copy of the grant application?
SFAC and GFTA uses an online grants management program for all grant programs. Returning users should use their user name and password to access current grant opportunities. New applicants must create a user account to access and submit SFAC and GFTA grant applications. Mailed, faxed, or emailed applications will not be accepted.
 
Can my organization apply for a grant from SFAC and GFTA?
Please see the SFAC and GFTA Grants Guidelines for eligibility requirements. Guidelines are reviewed and updated annually and can be found on the SFAC and GFTA website.

 


Submitting an Application

Before submitting your grant application
Review each part of the application to make sure that all required questions have been answered. Make sure that there are no spelling or text errors and that all the information is accurate to the best of your knowledge. Make any corrections necessary in the online application. The GMS will automatically save your changes whenever a change is made, but we recommend you save your work before moving onto a different section. Once you are satisfied with your application and all uploaded support materials, click the 'Submit' button at the end of the application. Your information will be sent directly to SFAC or GFTA and you will immediately receive an email confirming that the application has been successfully received.
 
What Happens to Your Application
SFAC or GFTA will automatically receive your grant application once you click the 'Submit' button at the end of the application. You will receive an email confirming that the application has been received. At this point, you will no longer be able to change your application. Your application status will appear as 'Received' and you may not edit your application in any way. You will be able to print a copy of your application from a PDF file at any time.
 
Storing Your Data
One of the many benefits of this online grant application is that once you complete an application, all your data will be stored. You can easily access information submitted in earlier applications as well as support materials that have been uploaded in previous years.
 

Usernames and Passwords

You assigned yourself a username and password when you first created a profile in SFAC and GFTA's GMS . Use this username and password to access ALL SFAC and GFTA grant applications. If you forget your username and password, please contact. You cannot change your username once your account is created.
 
My username and password are not working
Make sure that you have correctly spelled your username and password, using both capital and lowercase letters. The system is case sensitive. You may also copy and paste your username and password from the confirmation email sent to you after you created your profile.
I forgot my password.

On the Log In page of the web application there is a 'forgot password' function that will email you with instructions on how to reset your password. Password format requirements can be found on the Sign Up tab on the top right hand corner of the Log In page web.
 

Uploading Files

Grants Online offers a seamless uploading workflow directly within the application. To upload files the user will:
  1. Navigate to the form titled 'Support Materials.'
  2. You can then Drag & Drop files or click the Select Files button to add files to this section.
  3. Repeat step 2 until all of your files are successfully uploaded.

Grants Online allows users to upload files ranging from images, audio, and documents. All of your files will be stored in the cloud with instant streaming for videos and audio files.

Specifications

Images:
  • jpg, jpeg, gif, bmp, png, tif are allowable file types.
  • bmp and tif files will NOT work properly in the GMS.
Documents:
  • doc, docx, txt, xls, xlsx, pps, ppt, pptx, pdf
  • All documents will need to be downloaded to view. The user will need third party software to open documents.
  • Grants Online recommends accepting the PDF format since its is the most versatile file type and can be opened directly in the browser after downloading.
Audio:
  • aac, mp3, mpa, ra, wav, wma, eps
  • All audio files are converted to mp3

 
Why does my work session keep timing out?
As a security precaution, this system includes an automatic time-out feature which will periodically require you to confirm that you are still using the system. After 20 minutes of inactivity, this feature will count down from five minutes. If five minutes elapses without your confirmation, the system will automatically log you out.