Be aware of unfair practices by certain proposal writing consultants
NCP Brussels has been approached by a number of companies that have suffered unfair practices by some consultants specialised in EU R&D funds proposal writing.
Such companies were contacted by some consultants who offered faulty information and extremely high fees, that often equaled an entire grant or a large percentage of it.
One example is the SME Instrument. There are cases when SMEs are being approached by some consultants for a submission of a proposal for Phase 2, the company was asked to pay a fee equaling to the entire Phase 1 grant of 50 000 euros. Some consultants explained to the company that the Phase 1 fund is usually foreseen for such fees. This information is faulty and NCP Brussels condemns such practices. All EU funds awarded to organization for Research, Development and Innovation are granted with the purpose of carrying out such activities.
NCP Brussels reminds you that hiring a consultant to write or help with the writing of the proposal is not wrong and we do not discourage you from doing so. We do recommend you to search for a consultant in cases when your writing capacity is limited, or you lack the time for it. We however do not recommend you agreeing on paying with a percentage of your grant. In addition it is always best to ask an offer from several consultants before you choose the best one, even if you are initially approached by a single one.
NCP Brussels is available to you free of charge to guide you through the entire process of proposal preparation, submission and grant management.
On proposal preparation our services include:
- helping you choose the best fund available for your company and its activities;
- providing you with the template on which the proposal must be written and answering all you question on that template;
- strategic advise on how best to structure your text;
- pro-reading your draft proposal as many times as you request;
- administrative help with registering your company on the Participant Portal and guiding you through the steps of the submission procedure, per your request.
We remind you that NCP is a services nominated by the European Commission and we work according to the European Commission guiding principles, which do not include writing the text of your proposal.