Grants are one of the most efficient methods to attract and acquire funding. However, there is often a lot of work involved in the application process. Grant proposal preparation and submission is a time-consuming task, in addition to scouting out potential opportunities and reviewing eligibility criteria, there is also the actual paperwork and extensive collaboration between principle investigators (PIs), co-investigators, grant managers, support departments and other team members to ensure timely submission.
Applying for a grant at the Aga Khan University (AKU) adds an additional layer of requirements. In addition to internal AKU requirements and approvals, each granting agency has its own set of meticulous requirements, making the process more complicated and confusing. Often times, the process of proposal development and submission requires continuous collaboration among team members from different disciplines and departments, which leads to delays and difficulties in meeting tight, competing deadlines for applications.
The System for Research and Grants Management (Sa Re Ga Ma), developed by AKDN dHRC, aims to make the grant application process smooth and efficient. The application allows users to conveniently manage the application development process by assigning user-based rights according to their role. Users can upload multiple versions of documents; view and download documents; and keep track of progress of the grant application. A useful feature of the application is that it generates notifications to concerned team members if action is taken on a proposal. The system is used by grant administrators and project team members.
Since June 2018, the application was in the testing phase at the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi. After further customization and debugging, the official launch of the application took place in January 2019.
The Sa Re Ga Ma application has the capacity to be implemented in any entity or department with a need to organize research projects, proposal documents and track status of grants.