Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact

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A Guide to Actionable Measurement

Offering useful best practices and examples, this guide is the result of a year-long cross-foundation effort to develop common principles,
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Offering useful best practices and examples, this guide is the result of a year-long cross-foundation effort to develop common principles, approaches, and taxonomies to help Gates staff decide how best to allocate time and resources for data collection and analysis. Three principles guide the Gates Foundation's approach to actionable measurement: 1) Measurement should inform specific decisions and/or actions; 2) We do not measure everything, but we do strive to measure what matters most; 3) The data we gather help us learn and adapt our initiatives and strategies. The guide includes a results matrix, results hierarchy, definitions of related terms, and measurement guidelines intended to shape internal decisions about the depth, breadth, and rigor of measurement across grants and within strategies. It also highlights the best practices the Gates Foundation aspires to follow to be good stewards of our resources and not increase the reporting burden of grantees or distract them from their work.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: guide

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Best PracticeGeneral

Application Perception Report (APR)

The APR tool is a survey that allows foundations to understand the candid perspectives of declined applicants on a number of important dimensions.
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The APR tool is a survey that allows foundations to understand the candid perspectives of declined applicants on a number of important dimensions. Individual reports include comparative data based on applicant perceptions of more than 25 foundations.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy

ToolPhilanthropy

Ashoka Measuring Effectiveness Questionnaire

This tool aims to understand the impact of entrepreneurs receiving funds to do social sector work. It uses an annual self-response survey designed
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This tool aims to understand the impact of entrepreneurs receiving funds to do social sector work. It uses an annual self-response survey designed to track the progress of cohorts of Ashoka Fellows over time, distributed among groups of social entrepreneurs at the five- and ten-year anniversary of their Ashoka fellowship. The survey employs a group of proxy indicators which track data that can be aggregated across divergent fields of work, such as frequency with which the fellows' work has been replicated by other organizations and level of influence the fellow has had on public policy. Ashoka staff also carries out case studies with a subset of fellows to obtain more in-depth information.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, ready-to-use, survey

Ashoka

ToolGeneral

Balanced Scorecard

The Balanced Scorecard provides a performance management methodology. It measures operational performance in terms of four outcome perspectives:
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The Balanced Scorecard provides a performance management methodology. It measures operational performance in terms of four outcome perspectives: financial, customer, business process, and learning growth. Metrics used include CAGR of revenue, compound annual growth rate of "lives touched," and other customized measures of program quality as well as metrics related to building critical organizational capacity and competencies.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, scorecard/rating

New Profit, Inc.

MethodGeneral

Benefit-Cost Analysis

This tool expresses costs and social impacts of an investment in monetary terms. Quantification is achieved according to one or more of three
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This tool expresses costs and social impacts of an investment in monetary terms. Quantification is achieved according to one or more of three measures: NPV (the aggregate value of all costs, revenues and social impacts discounted), benefit-cost ratio (the discounted value of revenues and positive impacts divided by discounted value of costs and negative impacts) and internal rate of return (the net value of revenues plus impacts expressed as an annual percentage return on the total costs of the investment).  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: calculation, ready-to-use

Abt Associates

ToolGeneral

Benefit-Cost Ratio

This tool calculates a benefit/cost ratio for a Robin Hood program, whose goal is to eradicate poverty in New York City. It does so by applying a
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This tool calculates a benefit/cost ratio for a Robin Hood program, whose goal is to eradicate poverty in New York City. It does so by applying a common measure of success for programs of all types: how much a grant to a program boosts the future earnings (or, more generally, living standards) of poor families above that which they would have earned in the absence of Robin Hood’s help. It then divides the estimated earnings boost by the size of Robin Hood’s grant. The ratio for each grant measures the value it delivers to poor people per dollar of cost to Robin Hood.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: calculation, case study

Robin Hood Foundation

ToolDiseases,
Education,
Employment...

Building a Performance Measurement System

This methodology offers a comprehensive, flexible, customizable framework for performance management that can complement planning or strategic
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This methodology offers a comprehensive, flexible, customizable framework for performance management that can complement planning or strategic tools, such as the Theory of Change and logic models. This approach can help streamline existing measurement efforts or provide an efficient approach to building a performance measurement system from the ground up. Root Cause's how-to guide, "Building a Performance Measurement System", describes a five-step process for building or refining a performance measurement system that will serve as an essential tool for assessing an organization’s progress in carrying out its mission and identifying opportunities for improvement.   
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: framework, guide, worksheet

Root Cause

MethodGeneral

Building Future Leaders Diagnostic Survey

This free diagnostic tool is designed to help social sector leaders assess the strengths and weaknesses of their organization’s leadership
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This free diagnostic tool is designed to help social sector leaders assess the strengths and weaknesses of their organization’s leadership development and succession planning for senior leader positions. The survey includes 31 statements that relate to 5 core processes, including: 1) engagement of current leaders; 2) understanding future needs; 3) developing leaders effectively; 4) hiring leaders externally; and 5) measuring and improving practices. Organizations rate their current performance and receive a diagnostic results report with their own responses as well as the average responses of other survey takers, in order to help identify their organization’s areas for improvement and target their actions accordingly. An accompanying guide, "What’s Your “Plan A” for Growing Future Leaders?" features best practices from the field to help organizations think differently and address leadership development gaps.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: guide, ready-to-use, survey

The Bridgespan Group

ToolGeneral

Capabilities Profiler

This tool is a survey that helps organizations and their constituents assess three organizational capabilities: accountability, strategy, and
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This tool is a survey that helps organizations and their constituents assess three organizational capabilities: accountability, strategy, and operational integrity.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: survey

Keystone Accountability

ToolGeneral

Charting Impact

This best practice effort proposes a common language and framework for organizations of various sizes, and of various missions and activities, to
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This best practice effort proposes a common language and framework for organizations of various sizes, and of various missions and activities, to consider and communicate their impact through Charting Impact Reports. At the heart of Charting Impact are five simple yet powerful questions that encourage strategic thinking about how to achieve long-term goals. Responding to them creates a unique report that shares concise, detailed information about plans and progress with key stakeholders, including the public. Charting Impact does not specify what to measure or how to assess performance, and participating is intended to complement, not replace, the other goal-setting and planning efforts of the organization.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: ready-to-use, report, survey

Independent Sector, BBB Wise Giving Alliance and GuideStar USA

Best PracticeGeneral

Checklist for Reviewing a Randomized Controlled Trial or a Social Program or Project

This best practice is a checklist of key items to look for in reading the results of a randomized controlled trial of a social program, project, or
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This best practice is a checklist of key items to look for in reading the results of a randomized controlled trial of a social program, project, or strategy (“intervention”) to assess whether it produced valid evidence on the intervention’s effectiveness.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: checklist, ready-to-use

Coalition for Evidence-Based Policy

Best PracticeGeneral

Community Health Assessment aNd Group Evaluation (CHANGE)

The CHANGE tool helps community teams (such as coalitions) develop their community action plan. This tool walks community team members through the
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The CHANGE tool helps community teams (such as coalitions) develop their community action plan. This tool walks community team members through the assessment process and helps define and prioritize possible areas of improvement. Having this information as a guide, community team members can create sustainable, community-based improvements that address the root causes of chronic diseases and related risk factors. It can be used annually to assess current policy, systems, and environmental change strategies and offer new priorities for future efforts. CHANGE is a data-collection tool that allows community team members to track progress across a five-point scale, so incremental changes can be noted. As problem areas are identified, health-related policies are implemented, and systems and environmental change strategies are put in place, team members can document the community-level changes.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: indicators, ready-to-use, scorecard/rating, worksheet

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

ToolCommunity,
Diseases,
Education...

Community of Learners

This best practice is an approach to evaluation that emphasizes a working group of diverse stakeholders who bring different perspectives to the
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This best practice is an approach to evaluation that emphasizes a working group of diverse stakeholders who bring different perspectives to the experience. The process involves 1) assessing organizational readiness to participate in this approach; 2) assembling an evaluation team; 3) assigning roles; 4) assigning consultant responsibilities; and 5) assigning client responsibilities.   
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: guide

TCC Group

Best PracticeGeneral

Comparative Constituency Feedback

This is a tool for obtaining feedback on a program's perception by various stakeholders (it can be applied at different points along the
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This is a tool for obtaining feedback on a program's perception by various stakeholders (it can be applied at different points along the development value chain, between funders and grantees, and between organizations and their primary constituents). It uses a questionnaire to collect perceptions from organizations’ constituents on key aspects of the organizations’ performance. The questionnaire is administered simultaneously to a comparable constituency group for a cohort of similar organizations.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, consultant service, survey

Keystone Accountability

ToolGeneral

Compass Index Sustainability Assessment

This tool determines the level of sustainability of an organization's operations. Primarily used by cities, communities, companies, or
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This tool determines the level of sustainability of an organization's operations. Primarily used by cities, communities, companies, or organizations, this versatile tool has several versions, including: (1) for large companies, to assess them from the outside; (2) for SMEs and investment targets assessed in detail, from the inside; (3) cities and communities, using a multi-stakeholder development process; and (4) organizations, foundations, schools and other entities. The Compass clusters indicators into four components of sustainability: N=Nature, E=Economy, S=Society, and W=Well-being; for institutional evaluation, a fifth category is added: Synergy. Within each of the categories, between 5 and 20 parameters covering different facets are measured. For company assessments, responses to each section are weighted according to main areas of activity and impact to arrive at a score of 100 possible points. Metrics assess energy usage, material flows, community interactions - and are both qualitative and quantitative.   
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: consultant service, scorecard/rating

AtKisson, Inc.

Toolcertified
General

Core Capacity Assessment Tool (CCAT)

CCAT is an online survey tool that allows an organization to analyze its organizational strengths. It looks at four core capacities: 1) adaptive
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CCAT is an online survey tool that allows an organization to analyze its organizational strengths. It looks at four core capacities: 1) adaptive capacity: the ability of a nonprofit to monitor, assess, and respond to and create internal and external changes; 2) leadership capacity: the ability of all organizational leaders to create and sustain the vision, inspire, model, prioritize, make decisions, provide direction and innovate; 3) management capacity: the ability of a nonprofit organization to ensure the effective and efficient use of organizational resources; and 4) technical capacity: the ability of a nonprofit to implement key organizational and programmatic functions.   
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: case study, survey

TCC Group

ToolGeneral

Criteria for Philanthropy at Its Best

This best practice provides guidelines on values (e.g., provides at least 50 percent of its grant dollars to benefit lower-income communities,
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This best practice provides guidelines on values (e.g., provides at least 50 percent of its grant dollars to benefit lower-income communities, provides at least 25 percent of its grant dollars for advocacy), effectiveness (e.g., provides at least 50 percent of its grant dollars for general operating support), ethics (maintains an engaged board of at least five people who include among them a diversity of perspectives including of the community it serves and who serve without compensation), and commitment (pays out at least 6 percent of its assets annual in grants, invests at least 25 percent of its assets in ways that support its mission) criteria for evaluating philanthropy. It does not include scoring system, relative weighting system, or ranking.   
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: guide

National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy

Best PracticePhilanthropy

Developing a Theory of Change

This is a best practice to obtain clarity about what needs to happen to achieve and sustain the changes, or outcomes, that want to be seen (mapping
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This is a best practice to obtain clarity about what needs to happen to achieve and sustain the changes, or outcomes, that want to be seen (mapping the outcome pathways to success) and to identify who (people or institutions) can influence these outcomes positively or negatively (mapping the activity ecosystem). It sets the framework for identifying impact, intermediary outcome and process indicators.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: framework, guide

Keystone Accountability

Best PracticeGeneral

DevResults

DevResults is a web-based project management tool specially designed for the international development community. It’s a software application that
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DevResults is a web-based project management tool specially designed for the international development community. It’s a software application that offers tools for monitoring & evaluation, mapping, budgeting, project management, and collaboration.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: software

CaudillWeb

ToolGeneral

Donor Perception Report (DPR)

The Donor Perception Report (DPR) is a tool that explores, on a comparative basis, donors’ perceptions of community foundations to which they
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The Donor Perception Report (DPR) is a tool that explores, on a comparative basis, donors’ perceptions of community foundations to which they contribute. The DPR is based on a customizable survey, covering topics from donor preferences and motivations to the services and resources that are most valuable to community foundation donors. Through the DPR, community foundations are able to identify actionable strategies for most effectively engaging their donors.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy

ToolPhilanthropy

Ecological Footprint

The Ecological Footprint is a resource accounting tool that measures how much of the biological capacity of the planet is demanded by a given human
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The Ecological Footprint is a resource accounting tool that measures how much of the biological capacity of the planet is demanded by a given human activity or population. It takes into account six primary areas: cropland, grazing land, fishing grounds, forest, built-up land, and land for carbon absorption. The Ecological Footprint calculator, an application of the Footprint tool, asks a user a series of questions to determine how many global hectares are required for the entity's support - these questions include eating habits, household size, transportation usage, and others.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: calculation, ready-to-use

Global Footprint Network

Toolcertified
General

Evaluating the Impact of Development Projects on Poverty: A Handbook for Practitioners

This best practices handbook provides project managers and policy analysts with the tools needed for evaluating project impact. The handbook
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This best practices handbook provides project managers and policy analysts with the tools needed for evaluating project impact. The handbook presents an overview of concepts and methods, key steps of implementation, analytical techniques through a case study, and a discussion of lessons learned from a set of reviewed evaluations.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, guide

The World Bank

Best PracticeGeneral

Evaluation Plan Builder

This is a method that transfers key data from the Logic Model Builder and moves from goal-setting to identification of evaluation questions,
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This is a method that transfers key data from the Logic Model Builder and moves from goal-setting to identification of evaluation questions, indicators, and data collection strategies for evaluating program outcomes and implementation.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: indicators, worksheet

Innovation Network

MethodGeneral

Evaluation Principles and Practices

A thorough document created for a more comprehensive internal understanding of the role of evaluation at the Hewlett Foundation, "Evaluation
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A thorough document created for a more comprehensive internal understanding of the role of evaluation at the Hewlett Foundation, "Evaluation Principles and Practices" serves as a guide for foundations and grantees looking to better understand the best practices and principles of evaluation. The document provides a broad overview of different types of evaluations with cursory instruction on implementation in the context of organization-wide adoption. It is organized into four substantive sections: (1) Principles, (2) Organizational Roles, (3) Practice Guide, and (4) Special Evaluation Cases. It also includes a helpful glossary of terms.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: guide

The William & Flora Hewlett Foundation

Best PracticeGeneral

External Review of Program Strategy (Getting an Expert View)

This is a method to assess foundation strategy and potential for impact. It consists of a wise person review to answer five key questions: 1) Are
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This is a method to assess foundation strategy and potential for impact. It consists of a wise person review to answer five key questions: 1) Are we addressing critical opportunities and needs in the field? 2) Have we devised appropriate strategies for using these opportunities and meeting these needs? 3) Have we effectively implemented our strategies? 4) What should we consider doing differently in the future? 5) What has been the role and/or contribution of the foundation as a funder in the field? How are the foundation and its grants perceived? The method can be and has included field-wide surveys, commissioned papers by field experts, and expert panel meetings.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, strategy

Doris Duke Charitable Foundation

MethodPhilanthropy

Foundation Performance Assessment Framework

The Performance Assessment Framework is a best practice that enables foundations to monitor progress towards advancing their mission and
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The Performance Assessment Framework is a best practice that enables foundations to monitor progress towards advancing their mission and organizational goals. The James Irvine Foundation’s documentation of this framework can be used to create an individual measurement of a foundation’s impact by establishing clear goals, examining relevant data and assessing progress against desired outcomes in two broad sections: 1) Program Impact, with specific measures and indicators for context, outcomes, and results, learning and refinement; and 2) Institutional Effectiveness, with specific measures and indicators for leadership, constituent feedback, and finance and organization.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: framework

James Irvine Foundation

Best PracticePhilanthropy

Foundation Scorecard

The Scorecard is a method for assessing a foundation's program impact, program development, customer service, and human/financial capital. It uses
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The Scorecard is a method for assessing a foundation's program impact, program development, customer service, and human/financial capital. It uses performance indicators (determined by the impact framework) and commissions surveys to find out what grantees think of the Foundation, what experts think the Foundation’s impact is, and what the staff considers to be the Foundation’s strong and weak points.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, scorecard/rating

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

MethodPhilanthropy

Foundations of Success Guideline for Effective Evaluation

This is a best practice for monitoring and evaluating systems focused on adaptive management (obtaining the information needed to manage projects)
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This is a best practice for monitoring and evaluating systems focused on adaptive management (obtaining the information needed to manage projects) and impact assessments.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: guide

Foundations of Success

Best PracticeGeneral

Framework for Program Evaluation

This best practice offers a framework that outlines steps for program evaluation (engage stakeholders, describe the program, focus the evaluation
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This best practice offers a framework that outlines steps for program evaluation (engage stakeholders, describe the program, focus the evaluation design, gather credible evidence, justify conclusions, ensure use and share lessons learned) as well as standards (utility, feasibility, propriety, accuracy). While developed for public health programs, the steps and standards are generalizable to evaluation of any effort.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: ready-to-use, standards

Centers for Disease Control & Prevention

Best PracticeGeneral

Gender Equality Principles Initiative

The Gender Equality Principles Initiative (GEP Initiative) offers tools to help companies around the world achieve greater gender equality and
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The Gender Equality Principles Initiative (GEP Initiative) offers tools to help companies around the world achieve greater gender equality and build more productive workplaces through practical implementation of the Gender Equality Principles (GEP). The GEP Initiative provides companies with practical standards, tools, and resources that can be used to improve gender equality from the factory floor to the boardroom. The Gender Equality Principles address 7 fundamental issues: 1) Employment and Compensation; 2) Work-Life Balance and Career Development; 3) Health, Safety and Freedom from Violence; 4) Management and Governance; 5) Business, Supply Chain, and Marketing Practices; 6) Civic and Community Engagement; and 7) Transparency and Accountability. The GEP Web site offers companies a self-assessment tool that will provide a baseline of a company’s performance on issues of gender equality, identify areas of strength and opportunities for improvement, and deliver extensive tools and resources to assist in the design of an action plan.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: ready-to-use, standards, survey

San Francisco Department on the Status of Women, Calvert Group, Ltd., Verité

ToolGeneral

Grantee Perception Report (GPR)

The GPR is a management tool that provides foundation CEOs, boards, and staff with comparative data on grantee perceptions of their foundation's
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The GPR is a management tool that provides foundation CEOs, boards, and staff with comparative data on grantee perceptions of their foundation's performance on a variety of dimensions. The GPR is based on a comprehensive survey of grantees covering issues such as interactions during the grant, the application and reporting processes, and perceived foundation impact.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy

ToolPhilanthropy

GRI Reporting Framework

The GRI Reporting Framework offers a method to assess the sustainability of an organization's activities. This method can be applied to any type
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The GRI Reporting Framework offers a method to assess the sustainability of an organization's activities. This method can be applied to any type of organization of any size. GRI also offers Sector Supplements to respond to the unique needs of certain sectors, including but not limited to: the automotive, construction, electric utilities, media, mining & metals, and food processing sectors. Sustainability reports based on the GRI framework benchmark organizational performances with respect to laws, norms, codes, performance standards, and voluntary initiatives and compare organizational performance over time.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: guide

Global Reporting Initiative

MethodGeneral

HIP (Human Impact + Profit) Scorecard ™

The HIP (Human Impact + Profit) Scorecard™ is a tool that demonstrates how increased human impact (human, social, and environmental results) drives
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The HIP (Human Impact + Profit) Scorecard™ is a tool that demonstrates how increased human impact (human, social, and environmental results) drives higher revenue, lower costs, and tax benefits for organizations from all sectors - business, social, and government. It measures five categories: health, wealth, earth, equality, and trust. HIP also assesses five management practices that drive sustainable, profitable growth: vision, measures, decision-making, accountability, and financial alignment. Organizations are analyzed using a combination of company interviews, primary research and third-party databases. The resulting HIP rating integrates 3 dimensions: human impact, profit, and management practices - and can be used as a tool inside organizations, to benchmark performance, to evaluate competitive position, and to communicate the level of impact to stakeholders across all sectors.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: consultant service, scorecard/rating

HIP Investor, Inc.

Toolcertified
Environment,
Food,
Microfinance...

Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS)

IRIS is a catalog of metrics with standard definitions that provide a consistent method for describing an organization’s social, environmental, and
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IRIS is a catalog of metrics with standard definitions that provide a consistent method for describing an organization’s social, environmental, and financial performance. Incorporating commonly-accepted metrics and expert input, IRIS spans an array of performance objectives and includes sector-specific metrics for areas including financial services, agriculture, and energy, among others. Like financial accounting standards, IRIS provides a credible reference for performance reporting, and organizations need only use relevant metrics from the IRIS library.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: indicators, standards

The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN)

MethodGeneral

Learning for Results

This is a best practice in the form of an action guide for grantmakers that focuses on how foundations can create a deliberate culture of learning
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This is a best practice in the form of an action guide for grantmakers that focuses on how foundations can create a deliberate culture of learning so that they are better equipped to improve decision-making, lead change and achieve better results.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: guide

Grantmakers for Effective Organizations

Best PracticePhilanthropy

Learning with Constituents

This is a method to gather and document meaningful feedback from constituents. It encourages techniques such as “change journals” in which staff
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This is a method to gather and document meaningful feedback from constituents. It encourages techniques such as “change journals” in which staff record the informal input from their daily work. Other techniques include structured dialogues that probe deeply into what small groups of people think about the organization’s achievements, such as focus groups and world café. Large-scale feedback techniques include surveys that generate commentary from large numbers of people on many specific aspects of the organization’s behavior and performance.   
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: guide

Keystone Accountability

MethodGeneral

Listen Learn Lead

This is a report on phase 1 of the Change Agent Project, which offers best practices for grantmakers that focus on listening and engaging with
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This is a report on phase 1 of the Change Agent Project, which offers best practices for grantmakers that focus on listening and engaging with individuals doing work on the ground. The Change Agent Project began by gathering input from grantmakers and nonprofits. Through nine focus groups across the country and 30 interviews with nonprofit leaders and grantmakers GEO asked two questions: Where can changed practice make the greatest difference? And who in philanthropy is leading change? From these conversations, GEO has identified the most promising opportunities for grantmakers to make changes that will contribute to nonprofit results. This report highlights those lessons.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: guide

Grantmakers for Effective Organizations

Best PracticePhilanthropy

Local Multiplier 3

LM3 was developed by NEF as a simple and understandable tool for measuring local economic impact. It is designed to help people think about local
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LM3 was developed by NEF as a simple and understandable tool for measuring local economic impact. It is designed to help people think about local money flows and how their organization can practically improve its local economic impact, as well as influence the public sector to consider the impact of its procurement decisions. It was designed to be quick and relatively easy and to highlight where an organization can improve its impact.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: calculation, framework

New Economics Foundation

ToolGeneral

Logic Model Builder

This method is a step-by-step guide for articulating and connecting organizational or program goals, resources, activities, outputs, and outcomes.

Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: framework, guide

Innovation Network

MethodGeneral

Measures of Success

This book presents a methodology for designing, managing, and measuring the impacts of community-oriented conservation and development projects. It
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This book presents a methodology for designing, managing, and measuring the impacts of community-oriented conservation and development projects. It provides guidance for designing a site-specific conceptual framework, setting goals, developing a monitoring plan, collecting and analyzing data, and implementing program modifications based on findings. It also includes four case studies that serve to illustrate the methodology in action.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, guide

Foundations of Success

MethodAnimals,
Civil,
Community...

Metrics Guide

This method allows organizations to build an outline for assessment of outreach, volunteer, or other social activities by creating a list of key
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This method allows organizations to build an outline for assessment of outreach, volunteer, or other social activities by creating a list of key performance indicators and outlining strategies for measurement, applied to a select investment or signature program, or to an entire portfolio of investments.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: framework, guide

True Impact

MethodGeneral

Multidimensional Assessment Process (MAP)

Multidimensional Assessment Process (MAP) is a tool that provides foundations with an integrated assessment of performance based on comparative
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Multidimensional Assessment Process (MAP) is a tool that provides foundations with an integrated assessment of performance based on comparative data collected from a variety of different sources, including grantees, declined applicants, foundation staff, and foundation board members. The MAP assimilates results and data from all of CEP’s assessment tools into key findings, implications, and recommended action steps for improved foundation performance.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy

ToolPhilanthropy

Operational Benchmarking Report (OBR)

The Operational Benchmarking Report (OBR) is a tool that provides comparative data, relative to a selected group of peer foundations, on aspects of
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The Operational Benchmarking Report (OBR) is a tool that provides comparative data, relative to a selected group of peer foundations, on aspects of funder operations – including staffing, program officer workload, grant characteristics, and administrative costs.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy

ToolPhilanthropy

Organizational Assessment Tool

This is a self-assessment survey and reporting tool that provides nonprofit leaders and stakeholders with a snapshot of organizational strengths
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This is a self-assessment survey and reporting tool that provides nonprofit leaders and stakeholders with a snapshot of organizational strengths and areas for improvement.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: survey

Innovation Network

ToolGeneral

Outcome-Based Evaluation

Outcome-based evaluation is a systematic method for assessing the extent to which a program has achieved its intended results.  It answers the key
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Outcome-based evaluation is a systematic method for assessing the extent to which a program has achieved its intended results.  It answers the key questions:  “how has a program made a difference?” and “how are the lives of program participants better as a result of the program?”.  Outcome-based evaluation can help provide information that helps organizations and programs report back to their key audiences, improve program quality, make decisions about resource allocation and communicate about results.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: framework

Organizational Research Services

MethodGeneral

Pro Bono Manager

This modular, web-based resource is a tool for socially conscious organizations to manage and analyze their volunteer or philanthropic activities.
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This modular, web-based resource is a tool for socially conscious organizations to manage and analyze their volunteer or philanthropic activities. It includes True Impact’s Proposal Manager, Logic Model Tool, Survey Manager, and ROI Calculator.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: software

True Impact

ToolGeneral

Program and Policymaking Evaluation

This is a best practice on how to make effective decisions about program funding and support. It addresses cross-cutting programming and policy
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This is a best practice on how to make effective decisions about program funding and support. It addresses cross-cutting programming and policy decisions and utilizes information gathered and synthesized from both project level and cluster level evaluation.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: guide, strategy

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Best PracticePhilanthropy

Project Streamline Grantmaker Assessment Tool

This tool is an online survey that generates a comparative report about your grantmaking processes. It enables you to compare these processes to
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This tool is an online survey that generates a comparative report about your grantmaking processes. It enables you to compare these processes to those of other funders, as well as to the principles described in the report, "Drowning in Paperwork, Distracted from Purpose." It will also help you to determine the costs of these processes to both your organization and your grantseekers. Once you have completed the survey, you will be able to download a comparative report that you can use to stimulate discussion within your organization about current processes and opportunities for improvement.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: ready-to-use, report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy, Grants Managers Network

ToolGeneral

Prove It!

Prove it! was developed and published by NEF in 2000 in partnership with Groundwork UK and Barclays PLC to provide a method for measuring the
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Prove it! was developed and published by NEF in 2000 in partnership with Groundwork UK and Barclays PLC to provide a method for measuring the effect of community regeneration projects on the quality of life of local people. This method was originally conceived to help those managing neighborhood renewal projects look beyond the physical and environmental changes that had taken place (e.g. the number of trees planted; amenities created) and be able to highlight the positive outcomes of regeneration that can often go unnoticed. Since the original handbook was produced an accompanying Prove It! Toolkit has been developed that supports a project manager in planning and undertaking a participatory evaluation for proving and improving.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: framework, guide

New Economics Foundation

MethodArts,
Community,
Education...

Pulse

Pulse (aka Portfolio Data Management System, PDMS) is a proprietary online tool that allows the investor to track a consistent set of core
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Pulse (aka Portfolio Data Management System, PDMS) is a proprietary online tool that allows the investor to track a consistent set of core quantitative financial, operational and social metrics for each portfolio company. It creates and tracks customized metrics for individual companies and qualitatively rates company management using a standardized capabilities assessment of six areas: alignment with the investor's mission, financial sustainability, potential for scale, potential for social impact, management capability, and business model effectiveness.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: framework

Acumen Fund

ToolGeneral

Social Audit

This tool is used as part of the audit services provided by the Social Audit Network. A Social Audit can be conducted at one of three levels,
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This tool is used as part of the audit services provided by the Social Audit Network. A Social Audit can be conducted at one of three levels, including a self-audit option. The audit uses social accounting to determine that an organisation’s claims can be credible (proved) and used to demonstrate organisational development (improvement). Social accounting is the process of collecting information about the activities an organisation carries out which affect its stakeholders. These activities may be intended ‘outputs’ or just the day to day internal operations. Organisations' impact can be measured in three ways: social, environmental and financial. Financial reporting has been in use for hundreds of years and can be used to both show what has happened and as a planning tool. Social accounting enables this process to be carried out for social and environmental outputs. See the manual for more on methodology and links to ready-to-use materials.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, checklist, standards

Social Audit Network

ToolGeneral

Social Impact Assessment

This is a best practice that provides the following guidelines a) conceptual: funders and grantees should align goals, assessment tools, and best
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This is a best practice that provides the following guidelines a) conceptual: funders and grantees should align goals, assessment tools, and best practices b) operational: grantees and investors should acknowledge evaluation expenses as part of the cost of doing business, invest in measurement systems and tools, and develop examples of proven impact c) structural: each field and subfield should explore a range of possible outcome goals and best practices for measurement d) practical: a commitment to outcomes assessment can be a fundamental part of the management structure and organizational culture among funders and nonprofits.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, guide

Rockefeller Foundation, Goldman Sachs Foundation

Best PracticeGeneral

Social IMPact Measurement for Local Economies (SIMPLE)

The SIMPLE approach to social impact assessment is a methodology developed by Social Enterprise London (SEL) in conjunction with University of
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The SIMPLE approach to social impact assessment is a methodology developed by Social Enterprise London (SEL) in conjunction with University of Brighton. It combines internal strategic review with outcomes based assessment to help managers of socially motivated businesses to visualize where and how they make positive contributions to society. Following a two-day training, users are equipped to select appropriate measures with which to collect quantifiable data and have received guidance on how to use that data to put their efforts into the broader context. By using a framework such as SIMPLE, it is possible to identify what evidence of change needs to be collected in order to illustrate the social benefits that the work of the organization creates.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: framework, training

SEEDA, European Social Fund, University of Brighton, Focus Work, SEL, The Cubist

MethodGeneral

Social Impact Tracker

Social Impact Tracker Online is a tool that helps demonstrate your social value. It is a secure, web-based database application that allows you to
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Social Impact Tracker Online is a tool that helps demonstrate your social value. It is a secure, web-based database application that allows you to capture and report your outputs, outcomes and your social impact. Social Impact Tracker Online allows you to record and share your contacts and activities; monitor and report on engagement and participation; capture attendance; maintain session records for group-based and one-to-one activities and more. It allows you to capture and report on both quantitative and qualitative data. It is an efficient method of providing supporting documentation to funders, management and other key stakeholders.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: software

Cúnamh ICT

ToolGeneral

Social Investment Risk Assessment (SIRA)

This tool is a questionnaire designed to assess the likelihood that a nonprofit social or human services agency will deliver measurable social
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This tool is a questionnaire designed to assess the likelihood that a nonprofit social or human services agency will deliver measurable social value. The information developed with this tool is intended to be a proxy to help those social investors who want to see measurable good result from their allocation of funds to such organizations. The tool identifies three performance domains – tactical data use, strategic data use, and program value – that together define the likelihood of social value of an agency’s work with two indicators for each domain: data integrity indicator and outcomes focus indicator, making essential adjustments indicator and relating staff efforts to outcomes indicator, and capacity to deliver program/services with fidelity indicator and program impact data indicator. This tool was authored by David Hunter, with assistance from Ingvild Bjornvold and Marie Louise Refsgaard.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: scorecard/rating, survey, training

Hunter Consulting LLC

ToolGeneral

Social Rating

This tool offers an independent and objective assessment of a microfinance institution's (MFI) social performance, defined as the capacity of the
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This tool offers an independent and objective assessment of a microfinance institution's (MFI) social performance, defined as the capacity of the MFI to translate its mission into practice and to achieve its social goals. The qualitative and quantitative analyses are reflected in a social rating grade that encompasses a review of the MFI’s social performance management system, social responsibility, its outreach, and the quality of the services offered.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: consultant service, scorecard/rating

MicroFinanza Rating

Toolcertified
Microfinance

SROI

SROI is a method that aims to quantify social impact by attributing value to particular outcomes. Based on a set of principles for accounting for
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SROI is a method that aims to quantify social impact by attributing value to particular outcomes. Based on a set of principles for accounting for value, its stages include involving stakeholders, defining scope, developing an impact map, identifying and collecting data on approximate indicators and financial proxies, finding appropriate comparison data, collecting data on expenditure or investment, calculating the SROI, completing a sensitivity analysis, and producing an SROI report.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, checklist, framework, guide

The SROI Network

MethodGeneral

SROI Framework

This method offers set of guidelines for the measurement of non-financial impact per investment. It defines four major stages: Planning,
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This method offers set of guidelines for the measurement of non-financial impact per investment. It defines four major stages: Planning, Implementation, Reporting and Embedding, and the key questions and choices to be addressed at each step. Planning involves determining the goals for the analysis, its scope, the key stakeholders affected by the entity to be analyzed, the entity’s impact value chain, sources of data of information to be gathered, and a resource plan for the analysis. Implementation involves collection of data and supporting outcomes and base case evidence, as well as a calculation of social cash flows for outcomes describable in monetary terms, and a net present value calculation of these to arrive at an ROI ratio. Reporting includes making transparent the scope of the analysis and sources to facilitate verification and replication. Embedding includes specifying who is responsible for ongoing maintenance of data collection and analysis. The SROI framework does not include data management tools.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: calculation, case study, checklist, framework, guide

ESROIN members and others

MethodGeneral

SROI Toolkit

An impact assessment and management system, the SROI Toolkit provides a methodology that is designed for use with both individual companies and
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An impact assessment and management system, the SROI Toolkit provides a methodology that is designed for use with both individual companies and investment portfolios. SVT first works with the client to define one or more specific measurable "addressable impacts," identifying and involving key stakeholders. Next, indicators of this impact are defined and tracked. SVT also collects base case and outcome data from experts and secondary research sources, and customizes an analytical model that associates the organization's regularly collected data with impact results. This feeds into the SROI Dashboard that shows progress toward impact.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, consultant service

SVT Group

MethodGeneral

Staff Perception Report (SPR)

The Staff Perception Report (SPR) is a tool that explores foundation staff members’ perceptions of foundation effectiveness and job satisfaction on
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The Staff Perception Report (SPR) is a tool that explores foundation staff members’ perceptions of foundation effectiveness and job satisfaction on a comparative basis. The SPR is based on a survey specific to foundations that includes questions related to staff members’ impressions of their role in philanthropy, satisfaction with their jobs, their foundation’s impact, and opportunities for foundation improvement. Participating foundations have the opportunity to add a small number of questions specific to each foundation’s needs. In addition to providing participating foundations with comparative data, the staff surveys will help create a broad data set that CEP will use to report on practices and trends in the field.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy

ToolPhilanthropy

Stakeholder Assessment Report (STAR)

The Stakeholder Assessment Report (STAR) is a tool that delivers insight about a foundation's effectiveness by surveying stakeholders who the
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The Stakeholder Assessment Report (STAR) is a tool that delivers insight about a foundation's effectiveness by surveying stakeholders who the foundation seeks to influence as part of its strategy: academics, business/industry experts, government, media, nonprofit organizations, etc. It is based on a survey specific to foundation stakeholders and covers a variety of topics, from funder communications and resources to impact and effectiveness.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: report, survey

Center for Effective Philanthropy

ToolPhilanthropy

Success Measures Data System (SMDS)

Success Measures Data System (SMDS) is an outcome-based evaluation method for conducting full-scale participatory evaluations of programs to
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Success Measures Data System (SMDS) is an outcome-based evaluation method for conducting full-scale participatory evaluations of programs to improve neighborhoods and communities. It provides instructions on how to design and complete a participatory outcome-based evaluation, community development outcome indicators, data collection instruments for all indicators such as surveys, interview guides, and forms for tracking administrative and other records, a secure place to enter, manage and store all the data collected for an evaluation, a reporting function that tabulates your data, and guidance on how to integrate learning into programs and advocacy. In addition, Success Measures provides support to participating organizations for additional analysis and reporting of their outcome data, including mapping and integrating publically available secondary data and program records.  
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: indicators, software

NeighborWorks America

MethodGeneral

The Readiness for Organizational Learning and Evaluation (ROLE) Instrument

This tool is designed to help an organization determine its level of readiness for implementing organizational learning and evaluation practices
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This tool is designed to help an organization determine its level of readiness for implementing organizational learning and evaluation practices and processes that support it. The instrument’s results can be used to: 1. Identify the existence of learning organization characteristics; 2. Diagnose interest in conducting evaluation that facilitates organizational learning; 3. Identify areas of strength to leverage evaluative inquiry processes; 4. Identify areas in need of organizational change and development. The organization may use the results to focus its efforts on improving or further strengthening areas that will lead to greater individual, team, and organizational learning.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness

Tags: ready-to-use, survey

FSG, Hallie Preskill & Rosalie T. Torres

ToolGeneral

Theory of Change Community

The TOC website is devoted to the methodology, use and practice of Theory of Change. At this site you'll find, among other things: 1) When TOC can
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The TOC website is devoted to the methodology, use and practice of Theory of Change. At this site you'll find, among other things: 1) When TOC can help you and how (planning, re-grouping, evaluation, board meetings); 2) How it is best applied (should the scope of your engagement be a day, a month, or a year?); 3) How TOC can be the basis for a major organizational shift towards focusing on outcomes and accountability, while remaining participatory and transparent; and 4) How TOC has been used recently in key topic areas such as social justice, women’s movements, international justice, youth development, structural racism and more. Additionally, the site features a Facilitator’s Guide, published by the Aspen Roundtable, numerous PowerPoints showing the steps to creating TOCs, and finally, the Theory of Change Online, a web-based online drawing tool and database custom designed to create, store, and share Theories of Change. ActKnowledge also offers training and workshops to assist organizations in developing their TOCs.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, framework, guide, strategy, training

ActKnowledge

MethodGeneral

Trustee Evaluation Toolkit

The Trustee Evaluation Toolkit offers best practices from interviews with dozens of foundation trustees, CEOs, and evaluation experts. The toolkit
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The Trustee Evaluation Toolkit offers best practices from interviews with dozens of foundation trustees, CEOs, and evaluation experts. The toolkit explores brief case studies that show how foundation trustees are successfully employing different types of evaluation for a variety of purposes. In addition, it provides a self-assessment survey for foundation trustees, a framework for trustee conversations, a facilitator's guide, and a planning guide for foundation trustees to create a custom action plan for improving performance through evaluation.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, guide, survey

FSG

Best PracticeGeneral

Volunteering Impact Assessment Toolkit

The Volunteering Impact Assessment Toolkit contains tools developed by IVR to help organizations and groups to measure and assess the impacts of
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The Volunteering Impact Assessment Toolkit contains tools developed by IVR to help organizations and groups to measure and assess the impacts of volunteering. It is designed to be simple and adaptable so that organizations can use it in ways that are most useful to them. The Toolkit contains a set of research methods or instruments to help organizations assess the impacts of volunteering on different stakeholders or parties. These include: questionnaires; focus group topic guides; volunteer diaries; and volunteer manager audit forms.  
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Focus: Organizational Effectiveness, Social Impact

Tags: case study, guide, survey

Institute for Volunteering Research

ToolGeneral

Wallace Assessment Tool

This is a method to assess foundation impact. The method asks four core questions with varying indicators by program area. The questions are: 1)
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This is a method to assess foundation impact. The method asks four core questions with varying indicators by program area. The questions are: 1) Are our grantee partners satisfactorily executing their plans? 2) Are our partners incorporating the changes they are making in the way they do their work? 3) Are people in our grantee sites benefiting? 4) Are we producing and effectively promoting useful knowledge?   
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Focus: Social Impact

Tags: indicators

Wallace Foundation

MethodPhilanthropy
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