Would you like some help in reporting the impact of your organisation?

This is a guest blog from Joy Dobbs, Research Consultant and NCVO Associate.

Joy-profile_50pxDo you want to tell people about your impact, the difference you make? Either within your organisation or outside it? Then take a look at the Principles of Good Impact reporting [PDF, 1.6MB], just published.

It won’t take you long, Their first advantage is that they are short and easy to read. They summarise HOW organisations should communicate their impact and WHAT they should communicate. Their second advantage is that they are not rules you have to comply with or tools you have to apply. They are more of a guide, aiming to to help you focus on the key ingredients of your impact message and make you think about what really matters in fulfilling your purpose and achieving the changes you seek for your beneficiaries.

The principles apply whether you are a small local group run by volunteers or a national charity employing thousands of staff, and whether you are putting information about impact in a formal annual report or chatting to your staff and volunteers about what they’re achieving.

NCVO is one of eight organisations who have developed these principles within the sector and for the whole sector, following on from the Inspiring Impact last December. I see the principles as a first step towards much more collaboration across the sector on impact. Lots of us are working on our impact strategy, assessment and communication but often in isolation and we aren’t always doing it that well. Good impact reporting can help us in many ways, from making our discussions with stakeholders more open and focused to motivating our staff and volunteers. There will never be a ‘one size fits all’ approach to impact assessment but if we get together and share our experiences, I am sure we can improve our impact practice and get a lot better at demonstrating the difference we make to the people and communities we help.

You might also be interested that NPC, NCVO and a range of other organisations are launching a survey on the current state of impact measurement in the sector. The survey is in the field now, so keep an eye out for an email or phone call from Ipsos Mori, who are carrying out the survey. Your responses will help to create a true picture of the impact measurement landscape in the UK.

Joy Dobbs

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