Keystone Accountability logo

Provider: Keystone Accountability

Location:
  • London

Website: http://keystoneaccountability.org/

Contact:ali@keystoneaccountability.org

Sector experience:

Areas of expertise:

Organisation overview:

Keystone Accountability is a not-for-profit organization that helps social-change organizations understand and improve their performance by harnessing feedback, especially from the people they serve.

Keystone has developed a method called Constituent Voice™, a rigorous feedback system that monitors the impact of activities from the perspective of those most affected by them. This quantifiable and comparative data is used as the basis for learning dialogues, relationship building, and course correction to improve performance. It provides real-time data that fosters more accountable relationships with constituents, early identification of problems and unintended consequences and helps publically demonstrate that the organization is an active learner.

Keystone is a grantee of the first donor consortium to support feedback, the Fund for Shared Insight. Our partners include The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, The Ford Foundation, the UK Department for International Development, Oxfam, Save the Children, International Rescue Committee, Ikea Foundation, the European Union and USAID.

Case study 1: Charities Aid Foundation (CAF)

Sector:

  • Citizenship & community

Focus of project:

  • Programme design / theory of change facilitation
  • Developing impact plans
  • Performance management
  • Data management & analysis
  • Culture change
  • Building impact measurement tools
  • Reviewing external evidence

Keystone is working with the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) on its resilience programme. As part of this programme we are supporting 10 UK based charities to strengthen their organisation, be able to adapt to a changing environment and become financially sustainable. The support we provide is tailored to each organisation but in each case we are reviewing their programmes, theories of change and creating a Constituent Voice feedback system. This is a way for the charity to collect relevant, real time feedback from the people it seeks to help and use this data for performance management. Using our Constituent Voice method enables charities to ensure that their services are relevant, of good quality and delivered to generate the maximum impact possible. It also strengthens the relationship between the charity and the people they serve. We then support charities to communicate this improved performance using robust data. This will help them generate income from donors and win contracts. This project is on going so while we are unable to cite more specific outcomes at this stage, all organisations we have engaged with so far report that this is a crucial and much-needed area of support.

Case study 2: Centre for Employment Opportunities (CEO)

Sector:

  • Employment, training & education

Focus of project:

  • Programme design / theory of change facilitation
  • Performance management
  • Data management & analysis
  • Developing new products and services
  • Culture change

CEO is an organisation that provides employment opportunities to people with recent criminal records. Keystone Accountability worked with it to set up a Constituent Voice feedback system. CEO’s management had been collecting and using data but realised that the views of programme participants were missing. They knew if they started collecting this data it would help them achieve better outcomes for the target population.
CEO's experience of using Constituent Voice was very positive and led to them making several changes to their programs at the suggestion of their clients. These changes made it easier for clients to attend training sessions and work and to contact their job coaches - the resulting increased participation will lead to greater impact. The organisation also found that encouraging feedback from clients meant that the organisation as a whole improved is feedback culture.
We shared CEO's experience through a case study on our website (http://keystoneaccountability.org/case-studies/).
CEO plans to move beyond soliciting and acting on feedback and evolve into co-creating with participants. There are plans to involve participants in analysing the data and assessing how CEO is doing. One of CEO’s goals is to amplify participant voices and formalise their ability to weigh in on program policies and processes. Much like an alumni network, CEO is considering establishing a participant advisory board that could collectively discuss improvements.

Case study 3: LIFT

Sector:

  • Employment, training & education

Focus of project:

  • Programme design / theory of change facilitation
  • Developing impact plans
  • Performance management
  • Data management & analysis
  • Developing new products and services
  • Culture change
  • Building impact measurement tools

LIFT is an organisation supporting parents on low incomes. Supported by Keystone it has used data from client feedback to make changes to its programmes. It has also started using feedback from service users as a way to co-design new programs.
LIFT uses short surveys covering relationship quality, service quality, loyalty, personal foundations, social foundations and general feedback on services. Based on the feedback received LIFT has made various changes to make it easier for members to engage with the organisation and achieve their goals. For example, LIFT introduced peer support groups for parents to get to know each other. It changed its opening hours to make it easier for working parents to attend meetings.
LIFT established a correlation between positive feedback given by members on their relationship with LIFT and success in achieving their goals. LIFT found that the feedback process has enabled the organisation to manage towards areas which are more likely to lead to better outcomes for their members, thus increasing the charity's impact and making it more efficient.
For more information please see LIFT's explanation of how it uses Constituent Voice here http://www.liftcommunities.org/inside-lift/constituent-voice/ or our case study (http://keystoneaccountability.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/LIFT-Case-Study-FINAL.pdf).