Application Collaborators, Fiscal Sponsors, and Grant Writers – Who should be in charge of my submittable account?

This page breaks down exactly who can and should be the account holder in Submittable, and who can be brought in as a collaborator. See Submittable’s Guide to Inviting Collaborators for a full tutorial on the process!


Account Holders

The account holder is the term used by Submittable to describe the person who owns the Submittable Account, and is responsible for starting, submitting, and administering an application or grant award.

There are three types of people who must be the account holder:

  • Applicants applying on their own behalf
  • Applicant applying on behalf of an organization or entity they are a part of
  • Fiscal Sponsors

Applicants Applying on their own Behalf

People applying on their own behalf – as an individual artist, musician, or business – are responsible for all submissions and reporting requirements in Submittable. They can choose to bring in other people as collaborators if they wish, but those collaborators cannot have authority over the project.

Applicants Applying on Behalf of an Organization or Entity they are a part of

Someone applying on behalf of an organization they are a part of could look like an employee of a Non-Profit’s development department. It could also be the leader of a band.


  • Be responsible for submitting the application and any future reporting

Not Required to

  • Be the authorizing entity of the organization. This should be the head of the entity or department that is legally responsible for the grant.


  • Invite others in as collaborators on the application or additional forms

Must Not

  • Stop involvement in reporting compliance processes once application is completed

Fiscal Sponsors

A fiscal sponsor is a 501(c) organization that provides support to projects that lack nonprofit status. The fiscal sponsor handles financial transactions and reporting duties on behalf of the sponsored entity. Fiscal Sponsors may only be used for the Nexus and Elevate Grants. A single Fiscal Sponsor may sponsor multiple Sponsored Projects during each grant cycle.


  • Begin each application on behalf of each sponsored project
  • Complete the eligibility section for each Sponsored Project
  • Provide the requested contact information of the Fiscal Sponsor’s Authorizing Official
  • Upload a copy of their IRS Determination Letter and most recently completed IRS Form 990 for each application
  • Upload the signed Sponsorship Agreement, which will establish how the Fiscal Sponsor will manage the grant funds of the Sponsored Project if awarded
  • Officially submit applications and progress reports
  • Submit financial information in order to receive payments on behalf of their Sponsored Project(s).
  • Serve as the main administrative/authorizing entity.

Not Required to

  • Contribute to the narrative content of the application or future reporting forms.


  • Invite Sponsored Project to be a “collaborator” on their application. (Fiscal Sponsors can add multiple representatives from a single Sponsored Project as a collaborator)

Must Not

  • Fill out the demographics section of an application on behalf of their own organization. The demographics pertain only to the Sponsored Project


A collaborator is the term used by Submittable to describe anyone coming in to support the main applicant fill out forms. They can be brought in for both the application and reporting forms.

Types of Collaborators

  • Sponsored Projects
  • Third Party Grant Writers
  • Staff or Community/Professional Contacts


Sponsored Projects

The Sponsored Project can access their application through the Collaborator Feature in Submittable. More than one person from the Sponsored Project may be invited to be a collaborator on an application.

Third Party Grant Writers

A third-party grant writer is someone hired to write the grant for the Account holder. A third-party grant writer is different from a Fiscal Sponsor, because they are only here to contribute to the content of an application or reporting form. They cannot be the signatory of the project.

Staff or Community/Professional Contacts

This generally means people who volunteer to help write or edit an application. This can be bandmates, mentors, someone in your professional field, or staff members of your organization. While these individuals can come in to contribute to an application directly, we also advise you to develop your content externally to the application portal for easier group editing. Final answers can then be copied and pasted into the form.


Collaborator Abilities


  • Accept the Account Holder’s invitation in order to access the form. This is sent over email.

Not Required to

  • Fill in any specific content. The content collaborators contribute to is decided between them and the Account Holder.


  • Contribute to the content of the application
  • Contribute to the content of the progress and final reports


  • Start their own application
  • Invite other collaborators.
  • Be the signatory/authorizing official or administrative lead.
  • Submit financial information for award payment
  • Request payments
  • Submit or delete any forms
  • Fill out the eligibility quiz
  • Answer the demographic questions on their own behalf. The demographic questions are all about the Account Holders and their respective entities.