Outcome Evaluation and Program Reporting ➤ Single Organization, Multi Programs

Build an impact strategy to impact report within a limited time

Who Needs

This solution is most appropriate for social purpose organizations such as nonprofits, social enterprises, B-corps or social businesses or corporates focusing on social or environmental impact. These organizations often want to build impact strategy and more, such as

  • Theory of Change or Logic Model (typically for philanthropy approach)
  • Impact Management Project (typically for impact investment and responsible investment )
  • Build future impact metrics that align with impact framework
  • Impact reporting based on forecasted or actual results
  • Stakeholder results collection (outcome tracking)
  • Long term evidence of the investment or program
  • Continuous learning and improvement of mission

While most entrepreneurs are busy their enterprise aligned towards social impact mission, their impact practitioners, funders and intermediary can start impact journey through the workshop by sharing training material here with impact startups, workshops, and build hands-on process to co-develop their impact strategy

Strategy

Most enterprises whether nonprofits or social enterprise, they are so busy building their enterprises.  Building a social impact mission is very far from their hundreds of other priorities.  That said, there are several strategies and motivations, requires following incremental strategies

#1: Raising Impact Capital or Grant

  • You are a social purpose organization looking to raise impact capital or grant
  • Deliverables ▶
    • Theory of change or Impact Management Project based framework
    • Impact Metrics that align with an investors investment thesis
    • Reporting alignment such as SDG, Theory of Change, Impact Management Project
    • Forecast or Actual Past Results
  • Strategy ▶ Read More

#2: Activity & Output Reporting

  • A large number of nonprofits and grantees fall into this category.  Once you have agreed upon KPI or metrics, often activity or output, design appropriate data collection that aligns with impact framework
  • Often many nonprofits get funded by specific funders to carry out specific program activities. Fieldworker often carry out activities defined by the program goals and collect activity and output data on different sources such as paper, excel, google spreadsheet, etc
  • Often they struggle to standardize data collection in a single location making it difficult to report results
    excel-immDeliverables ▶
    • Impact Framework (defined in #2)
    • Program Design with data collection design (activity data design)
    • Automatic reporting
         Strategy ▶ Read More

    #3:  Stakeholder reporting

    • A large number of nonprofits and grantees fall into this category.  Once you have agreed upon KPI or metrics, often activity or output, design appropriate data collection that aligns with impact framework

      • Deliverables ▶
        • Impact Framework (defined in #2)
        • Program Design with data collection design (activity data design)
        • Automatic reporting
    •          Strategy ▶ Read More

      #4: Scaling: Continuous Learning and Improvement | Impact Evidence

      • You are a social purpose organization that does not think that impact measurement is NOT a burden. 
      • However, improving the scale of social impact mission is critical for internal management and externally for raising the profile to demonstrate your impact
      • You have already been collecting activity and output data for a while, but funder is looking to demonstrate the outcome
        • Deliverables ▶
          • Impact Framework (defined in #2)
          • Program Design with data collection design (activity data design)
          • Automatic reporting

                 Strategy ▶ Read More

        Current State Design

        Before we improve your future state impact framework, it is important to document your current state. 

        • Are you collecting reports from your grantees or investee in a free form such as PDF or word report?  Chances are you don’t have your theory of change?
        • Have you defined the impact framework such as a theory of change? 
        • Does your investee and/or grantees already have a theory of change?
        • How do you normally collect results from the investee or grantee?  Email? PDF report, google or excel spreadsheets?
        • What kind of results do you aggregate?
        • Do you need to collect stakeholder impact?  Do you collect program data such as renewable products?  
        • Where do you collect documents such as legal, program summary, annual report, etc?

        Activity & Output Reporting

        If you one the social purpose organization, who have been not collecting or collecting program-related activity or output data on google spreadsheets or MS-Excels, you may still be struggling to collect results from different programs

        • Different program team may be collecting data on different systems
        • Often data collected may not be corresponding to funders reporting requirements
        • Lack of consistency in program data collection that provides an accurate results at any time
        • Funders may require specific reports that aligns with program data, but due to consistent data design, data collection, reporting may take a long time
        • Activity and Output reporting are not aligned with the theory of change or logic model
        • Reporting from different programs are incomplete

        Step by step design

        Once you have a complete inventory of the current data collection process, it is time to see if you are aligning your data collection process with theory of change and funder reporting requirements.

        Before you do it is important to build tables from the existing data collection process, if available.  The best way to do is to import existing clean data into Impact Cloud. Impact Cloud allows identifying gaps between the theory of change metrics and actual data collection.  As you design, it important to define:

        • Programs:  Are your programs long term and associate multiple funders or is your every program funded by different funder?
        • Build a data design and apply consistently across multiple programs for consistency
        • Decide the data collection methods.  Here are pros and cons vs traditional spreadsheet
          • Collect data on Impact Cloud:   The benefit of using this approach over google spreadsheet and MS-Excel is 
            • Consistently collecting and storing all the data in on cloud
            • Easier to access and report of each program
            • Easier to align reporting requirement with the theory of change
        • Each user or role can create their own private workspace or projects that directly correspond to the data collection requirements
        • Based on the theory of change define impact metrics and frequency of reporting (monthly, quarterly, semi-annual or annual)
        • Define formula to automatically calculate results which can be seen in Impact Scorecard
        • Design analytics and dashboard

        Stakeholder Survey

        Impact Practitioners are a foundation for the impact measurement and management community.  Practitioners from social value international networks, evaluators and a new generation of tech-savvy practitioners enable a broad range of clients from nonprofits to businesses. While these practitioners often help clients based on Excel templates and frameworks, often they end up recreating similar things are different clients with no long term reuse. SoPact Impact Cloud is one of the most innovative impact measurement and management platforms that can enable practitioners through a more streamlined approach.

        Impact practitioners who work with early-stage organizations can assist them through interactive and hands-on aspects of Impact Cloud.  These organizations are often well-intentioned who would like a consultant driven approach to design the right impact strategy, stakeholder data collection, analysis and impact reporting. We will give you a walkthrough on how a practitioner can manage an entire lifecycle with some support from the organizations. These organizations can play an important role in validating impact strategy, mobilizing stakeholder data collection and co-create impact reports. SoPact is officially working to build long term strategic partnerships. In certain cases, we are also looking forward to building a stronger country or regional competence center where language, culture and business practices tend to differ.  The benefit here is that leading networking head, often social value international chapter can take a lead in learning and expanding through local partners ecosystem who may have a different set of clients from corporates, foundations, nonprofits or social enterprises. In each instance, SoPact will do initial handholding (often for the first few clients). Once consultants or competence center is trained, often we take a back seat and support them for technical assistance. For a successful partnership, it is important that the partner has a long term strategy with a strong history of similar project executions and a stronger roadmap of growth in impact measurement and management consultant or advisory role.

        1. Share the following impact strategy for review before 
        2. Build customized youtube channel from SoPact YouTube Channel with video necessary for your enterprise (add your custom video!) and share 
        3. Build customized 1-2 days workshops
        4. Share login with impact practitioners to build their own impact strategy
        5. Design and mentor your enterprises

        Example Plan

        Step One: Impact Strategy

        Our journey of impact commitment started with B-Corp certification and moved to impact measurement and management with Sopact. Sopact Impact Cloud® allowed us to align with multiple standards such as Sustainable Development Goals, Impact Management Project, Aeris, and GIIN-IRIS+. We also followed Actionable Impact Management (AIM) guidebooks to define our impact strategy.

        Step Two: Metrics

        Capital Plus Financial and SoPact defined the outcome and output metrics. Some of the output metrics were defined based on the data that Capital Plus Financial was already collecting. The outcome metrics were new and based on what is realistic for Capital Plus Financial to collect from the beneficiaries and within the context of affordable housing.

        Step Three: Data Collection Strategy

        We defined the sources of data for each of the metrics, meaning if we needed to summarize the loan system data, for example, to get the total number of female borrowers, or if we needed to get the data from a survey.

        Step Four: Stakeholder feedback Collection

        We selected a set of questions to get direct feedback from our stakeholders (translated the questions to Spanish as per our community need) and added additional context. We tested and refined the survey before sending them out to 781 beneficiaries from communities we served in Texas using Impact Cloud. The initial response was low. To be able to include as many stakeholders’ voices as possible, Sopact inspired Capital Plus Financial to put together a campaign of calling the beneficiaries, and it paid off with 23% responses! (=Confidence level 95%)

        Step Five: Analyzing, Learning, and Demonstrating Impact 

        Our feedbacks were analyzed and visualized in a dashboard, including all the key outcome and output indicators, and additional questions that can give Capital Plus Financial initial learnings about their current process and customer satisfaction. It only took 2-3 hours!

        Capital Plus Financial will stay ahead of impact measurement wave by utilizing existing technology and tools needed to collect, assess, and demonstrate the impact. Impact roadmap for Capital Plus is ready, now in the future years to come to bring accountability with deep impact management.

        Scaling: Continuous Learning and Improvement | Impact Evidence

        A well-designed performance monitoring requires following reporting and learning goals. A well-designed system streamlines reporting and compares results with baseline, forecast, and actuals. If other investee or grantee are reporting the same metrics, the system should automatically allow comparing results, and aggregate results automatically in both numeric and visual format for a better comparison. 

        1. How do you want to review progress? Individual or aggregated?
        2. Phases: Due diligence, Monitoring, and Evaluation or Post-Exit
        3. Frequency: Monthly, Quarterly, Semi-Annual, Annual or Fiscal Year Based
        4. Data roll-up requirements 
        5. How you want to view review performance: Baseline, Forecast, Targets
        6. What are the qualitative reporting requirements?
        7. Comparision within a portfolio
        8. Comparision with external or benchmark results

        Follow on these step by step process

        English

        Spanish

        Case Study

        Company: CAPITAL PLUS FINANCIAL

        Company Type: Community Financial Development Institution (CDFI)

        Impact Type: Affordable Housing

        Geography: Texas, USA

        MISSION: As a community development financial institution (CDFI), Capital Plus Financial provides capital to markets identified as underserved by the community. Capital Plus Financial focuses on homeownership in these underserved markets which will result in a positive economic and social impact on the community. Capital Plus Financial originates first-lien residential mortgages in low to moderate-income communities across Texas. Capital Plus Financial lends to low to moderate-income documented Hispanic borrowers. Approximately 50% of our borrowers have no credit score and the majority are first-time homeowners.

        CHALLENGE: As a publicly-traded social enterprise a dual responsibility emerges: scaling a sustainable enterprise with building shareholder value and measuring the impact delivered to stakeholders and communities.

        OPPORTUNITY: SoPact's end-to-end impact management to collect data at the beneficiary level and share evidence of impact on underserved groups.

        SOLUTION: Impact Cloud®, a user-friendly solution to send surveys to beneficiaries and produce analytics expressing financial inclusion and better serve those stakeholders.

         

        AFTER IMPLEMENTING IMPACT CLOUD® - a new era of impact management

        1. Impact Strategy - After B-Corp certification, Impact Cloud® allowed to align with multiple standards such as SDGs, Impact Management Project, Aeris, and GIIN-IRIS+.
        2. Metrics Discovery - CapPlus and SoPact defined the output and outcome metrics. The first defined based on the data already being collected. The latter was new and based on what is realistic to collect from the beneficiaries.
        3. Data Collection Strategy - Defined the sources of data for each of the metrics, eg. loan system data or surveys.
        4. Stakeholder Feedback Collection - Selected, tested and refined a set of questions for a stakeholder survey, before sending them out to 781 beneficiaries using Impact Cloud. After calling the beneficiaries, 23% responded.
        5. Analyzing, Learning, and Demonstrating Impact - In 2-3 hours, after key outcome and output indicators analysis, CapPlus learned about current processes and customer satisfaction. It will look into technology and tools to collect, assess, and demonstrate the impact in order to bring accountability and deep impact management.