Being able to evidence the impact of your project is increasingly important to funders and commissioners. Impact is how effectively your project met the outcomes you originally set out to achieve.
For some projects the outputs and outcomes are easier to measure. The completion of capital works to buildings can be evidenced by the works being signed off by an architect or surveyor and by before and photographs of the area improved. You could also tell us about the additional use that the works have enabled.
Projects that aim to improve the wellbeing of individuals or a community can be more challenging to monitor and evidence. Some tips for doing so are;
- Plan how you will monitor and assess your project from the start and set up systems for gathering and recording information before the project starts.
- Test the methods you propose to use e.g. ask someone to complete any questionnaires you plan to use, to ensure they are clear and unambiguous and will be easy to collect and collate. Set up your methods for collating and reporting responses at the start.
- Measure the difference made, or journey travelled by the people or community you are working with; this is likely to involve gathering information from proposed beneficiaries at the start of your project and then at intervals after the project has started. Depending on the nature of the difference you are seeking to bring about it may be appropriate to gather follow up information part way through the project or at the end or a few months after the project finishes. You will know which will provide the most meaningful information. The key thing is to have information from beneficiaries before and after your project, so you can see the difference it has made.
The following reports are good examples of well planned and managed projects: