Introduction of the client

Unusually for DRIAD, AECOM is a Fortune 500 company specialised in engineering and infrastructure. They have an office in Leeds and contacted us upon recommendation by one of their staff.

Problem they had

They had unsuccessfully applied to a large Horizon 2020 competition. They found the report they received from the European Commission difficult to understand, making it complex to identify what needed to be improved for the next opportunity.

Solution we provided 

Our MD, Vivien, is a reviewer for the Fast Track to Innovation, one of Horizon 2020s’ competitions. As such, he has an insider experience of the review process and of the content that is used to build the report received by AECOM.
We conducted a thorough review of the application. Due to the complexity of the project, this analysis was carried out over a period of 5 days by two consultants. This included:

  • a line-by-line analysis of the content and the identification of key issues in the proposal
  • the consolidation of these comments to focus on the main suggestions of improvements
  • a detailed mock-review of the application, offering a comparison with the feedback received from the European Commission.

The results of our analysis were compiled in a 16-page report that included recommendations and action points to improve the application that was presented in a 2h call.

“We engaged with Driad to proofread a Horizon 2020 grant application. Vivien and his expert team provided a very thorough and honest analysis of our grant application; not only pointing out the weaknesses, but giving examples and specific guidance in how to make improvements. The follow-up call enhanced the service, with detailed discussions leaving no stone unturned. With their help we were able to draft an application that is more attractive to reviewers, and increases our chances of success.”

Scott Stephenson

Principal Research Scientist, AECOM