SUBMIT EARLY. The Internet may seem instantaneous, but considering that the NIH expects around 5,000 grant applications this year, bottlenecks will likely occur, says Christian Harker, president of Cayuse. Grant proposals submitted at the last minute may be delayed, possibly past the deadline. The delay may be in the system, but you can save yourself the worry about whether it was received on time and the headache of having to go through procedures for late submissions by submitting your proposal early. Harker suggests 48 hours in advance of the deadline. (Even 24 hours early will help.)

STAY IN TOUCH. Gone are the days of obtaining signatures and running off to FedEx. If using PureEdge, the free grant-formatting software available through, individual investigators can't submit grant applications directly. Instead, your institution's sponsored program office must turn in the proposal on...

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