Refining Your Financial Due Diligence Process: During the Crisis and Beyond | PEAK2020 Online

Assessing financial health of applicants and grantees is a critical part of the lifecycle of a grant. Funders approach this assessment process in a variety of ways that often involve collecting financial documents, some historical and some future focused, understanding trends and having follow up conversations. However, in order to provide a rapid response to ensure the viability of their grantees in times of crisis and uncertainty, funders are rightly adjusting or suspending many of their processes. In this session, Hilda Polanco explores several questions for funders to consider in assessing financial health at this time.

Original air date: May 19, 2020

​Hilda Polanco

Founder and CEO

Fiscal Management Associates (FMA)

Hilda is the founder and CEO of FMA, a management consulting firm that builds the capacity of nonprofit and foundation leaders nationwide. Skilled at navigating the challenging relationships between nonprofits and their foundation investors, Hilda designs and delivers training to the staff of nonprofit organizations and supports funder grantmaking and investment strategies designed to maximize grantees’ financial resilience. 

Hilda has been published widely on a variety of topics in nonprofit fiscal management and leads FMA’s nationwide staff in capacity-building partnerships that leverage place-based strategies and anchor institutions to build community around fiscal management best practices.

Grants Management Professional Competency Model

Cross-Cutting Competencies

  • Financial Management: Implement financial policies and controls to ensure effective and efficient deployment of financial resources for grantmaking.

Lifecycle of a Grant Competencies

  • Planning and Pre-Grant: Apply the grantmaker values, mission, and goals to ensure alignment of application process and guidelines.

Principles for Peak Grantmaking

Steward Responsively - Manage all entrusted resources—people, finances, reputation, time—with care to balance stewardship with an agile approach to risk. 


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COVID-19 Response Resources (FMA)
PPP Toolbox (FMA)
Toolkit for Grantmakers (FMA)
"Less Is More: How Grantmakers Are Using Simple Financial Metrics" (Foundation Review)
Tipping Resource (Rasmuson Foundation)
Navigating COVID-19 for Nonprofits: From Financial Triage to Scenario Planning (Wallace Foundation)