Skip to content Skip to footer

Loading Results

Social Impact Measurement Masterclass, 25 February

Organisations are increasingly looking to understand and enhance their impact on society. Media, customers and stakeholders have greater awareness of these issues today and are holding organisations accountable.

In this session we explored explore how you can approach this challenge, and how to move from good intentions to quantified social impact that can be communicated with others.

Playback of this video is not currently available


Social Impact Measurement Masterclass

View Transcript

David Adair:

Well, good morning everyone and thank you all for joining our Social Impact Measurement Masterclass as part of our Building Public Trust Awards. I am delighted to inform you that the Building Public Trust Awards are happening this year, and they will be open for applications to the Impact on Social Enterprise, both social and environmental impact in May, but more about that later.

I am David Adair, Head of Community Engagement at PwC, and we are delighted to be running the Building Public Trust Awards this year, and the Social Impact award we run in partnership with the School for Social Entrepreneurs. Without further ado, I'd like to introduce Josh Babarinde, the Head of Learning and Innovation at the School of Social Entrepreneurs. Josh over to you.

Josh Babarinde:

Hello David, thank you very much for that introduction and thank you for inviting me to share a few quick words before the formal start of the juicier bits of the masterclass. Much more juicier than what I have to say at least, but it's lovely to see so many familiar faces. As David said, my name is Josh, I am the Head of Learning and Innovation at the School for Social Entrepreneurs, and I am also a proud member of the PwC Social Entrepreneurs Club. I, in my previous role, ran a social enterprise called Cracked It, and I received some great support from PwC, and through that. It's great to be back, but in a different capacity.

I have been asked just to share a few words about why social impact measurement is important. And I think, we all know on this call that it's a tough endeavour, it's a real discipline. It's difficult to get right and it can often feel like another layer of work that social enterprises and social entrepreneurs need to do, compared to their private sector counterparts. But it is mission critical, and think of it this way, measuring impact is sacred. The result is a passport to opportunities and to changing people's lives, and that's what excites me about it. And I think there are five key reasons to really get serious about measuring social impact or stepping up our efforts in that department.

Number one is an obvious one - functionality. We need to measure our social impact to make sure that we know that our solutions actually empower our beneficiaries, and we need to know where some of our weak spots might be, so that we can turbocharge them.

Secondly - mission alignment. It's all well and good if there are some positive outcomes that come as a result of the solutions or interventions that we develop. But what's more important in a way is that those outcomes align with our values as social entrepreneurs with our strategies, with our operational goals, is there that integrity with mission there, or has drift occurred. If it is the case, that drift has occurred, how do we bring things back on track in line with our theory of change.

Thirdly, one that we are all very familiar with on this call – funding. Collecting great social impact data and presenting it just as effectively is an important tool to be used to prove your value to others, and to make the case for funding and investment in your intervention, so that it cannot just continue to operate as it is, but it can scale and grow, and either reach new depths of impact, or breadths, or indeed both.

Fourthly, there are some really important policy implications of measuring your social impact. Not only can you prove your value to others to make the case for funding opportunities for you, but you can make the case for policy changes for your beneficiaries on the basis of great social impact data. And you know a fantastic example would be looking at a social enterprise like the Clink, that many of you will be familiar with. The Clink run fine dining restaurants in prisons where they train and employ ex-offenders to curate these fantastic experiences for people to go in and have a lovely meal, but also engage with the present community. The Clink has grown from being a relatively small setup, having a handful of restaurants in prisons across the UK, and using their impact base. They have successfully made the case to government to change policy and to incorporate a Clink in many, many more prisons across the UK. They're about to run out 70 new restaurants, increasing from about half a dozen, I think. And that's on the basis of great social impact data, they've changed policy and policy can change lives.

And finally, a key reason to measure social impact, a key reason that it’s important is for confidence reasons; for you as social enterprises and also you as social entrepreneurs. I've been there, I understand that leadership can be a lonely road, innovation can be a lonely road. It can be plagued with self-doubt, are the right things happening, and is it really the right thing for me to be running this organisation. Are there other people who could be doing it better, and really grabbing the social impact by the horns, and engaging with it and realising that what you are doing is fantastic as far as the cold hard data is concerned. It’s a great way of building that confidence in yourselves, and in your organisations to go and pitch for that cash with confidence, go and pitch for those policy changes with confidence, and more. So, it's a really exciting field and can when integrated into the discipline of social enterprise rather than bolted on to the end and creates for the most impact, the most confidence and the most integrity.

At the School for Social Entrepreneurs, we incorporate social impact measurement onto lots of our programs and courses that I'd thoroughly recommend you check out if inspired by this session you'd like to build on that knowledge. I've just posted a link where you can find out more about these in the chat. And as well as workshops to pick up some new information, a great resource that the School for Social Entrepreneur provides, much like PwC’s Social Entrepreneurs Club, is a network of fellow social entrepreneurs who are in the same kind of stages, who are confronting the same kind of questions, and who are a great resource to learn from and share with.

So, again I am really excited to be able to help to kick off this workshop, I hope you enjoy it, and thanks again for having me. Over to you David.


Brilliant, thanks ever so much, Josh, and as you said collaboration is the key to this. It's just important to reflect, it is really tough out there as you mentioned, Josh. We ourselves have a social enterprise, Brigade, to train those at risk of homeless’ into cooking, which of course is closed at the moment, but it's still continuing to have an impact supporting those in need through food banks, etc. I know a lot of you are resilient as social entrepreneurs, and have really rose to the occasion, and seen it as an opportunity like the sewing rooms making masks. If you are doing some great things during the pandemic, do let us know. We are part of something called ‘Business at its Best,’ which is a campaign to highlight those stories and those businesses that are really going that extra length during the pandemic, is for the CBI and with the Inclusive Partnership team. Please do let us know. Have a look on LinkedIn or on Twitter for that and let us know your stories.

But I do think it's also an opportunity, the pandemic. When we do come out, we are coming out at the other end, particularly through social enterprises getting onto the supply chains, be it through Buy Social campaign that we are part of with Social Enterprise UK, but more excitingly at the moment is the work that Claire Dove is doing at the Cabinet Office, really making it easier for social enterprises to get on the Government supply chain and procurement. Do take a look at the Government site about the Social Value Act. Going forward, corporates will be really looking at some mutually beneficial partnerships. So, I think your time has come again, post-COVID, so it's very exciting. But we are very fortunate that PwC have experts that share their skills and time with us, and we've got two today, so let's crack on. We've got Euan Long, and Liviana Sordo who were going to be leading this session, so thanks ever so much Liviana and Euan, and I am handing over to you now.

Euan Long:

Great. Thanks very much, David. Thanks also Josh, for your introduction around the wider context of why social impact is important. A bit of introduction first. So, Liv and I will be running this main session so it would be great for us to introduce ourselves. So, Liv, do you want to introduce yourself first?

Liviana Sordo:

Yeah, sure, hi all. My name is Liv, I am a senior associate at PwC, and I work in the Sustainability and Climate Change consulting team. One of the things that I have focused on since joining this team is environmental impact, and social impact as well. Euan and I have run this across a couple of times, and we are hoping that it will be as useful to you as it seems to have been for others.


Thanks, Liv. I am Euan, I work in the Sustainability & Climate Change team as well at PwC, and that means that we work with other organisations, be that social enterprises, corporates, governments, financial services, to think about everything to do with sustainability. And, at first that might come across like climate change only, but it does include a lot of economic and social impacts, and that's what we are hoping to bring today, our experience with those kinds of projects, looking at the social and economic impacts that all your organisations will be making.

Some considerations for the session ahead. We have about an hour on this, before we have a 15 minutes summary and we will be hearing from Jerry, a previous BPTA winner, to share his experience as well.

So, objectives from the next hour. We'd like to talk about what social impact means, and that might be different to each one of you; I think it will be different to each one. It is very much about what are you trying to achieve, what are you trying to understand about your own enterprise, and we will be exploring that idea a bit more.

Then, next is considering how social impact, in whatever guise, it means to you, how it's relevant for your organisation. Josh mentioned a few of those points earlier around it, hopefully having some socially impact quantification, would give you the confidence to say, ‘yeah, I am having a great impact in these ways and I can communicate that with stakeholders, clients, and funders,’ is the other one that Josh mentioned. And the funders question is a good one, it is always top of the questions in these kinds of sessions.

Social impact is also a really good way, Josh alluded to this, to think about, do things need to be going differently? Do the activities that are currently happening have the impact that you want to have? And then lastly, we’ll be thinking about some more practical sides of it. Once we establish what social impact is, why it's important to you, then we start looking at, ‘okay, how does that turn from an idea through to something that is measured, and then something that you use going forward.’ So, I hope those three objectives are in keeping with what you were hoping to get out of this session.


So, the basics. What are we talking about here? Why would we measure social impact? How and what's the purpose? The impact is in effect change or influence on individuals, communities and society, and possibly the environment as well, as a result of what an organisation is doing. Assessing that basically means putting a magnitude onto it, trying to work out how big that impact is, and whether the impact is positive or negative, or a bit of both. Impact assessments can be qualitative, they can be quantitative, they can be a bit of both. Sometimes organisations will value that impact in monetary terms and look at social return on investment. And that can include looking at nonfinancial impacts, such as well-being in a monetary way in order to be able to compare impacts across the board. But ultimately, an impact assessment can help you hone your purpose, your strategy, get funding - if that's what you're looking for - and it can help you engage with stakeholders, not only in the process of doing the impact assessment, but also with the results. Hopefully that is something you've all thought about before, or if not, it's something that you are all thinking.

So, there are a few key steps to impact assessments, and this is the structure of what we are going to go through today, these four different steps. So, Scoping and Mapping - thinking about what you are actually measuring, and what kind of impacts your organisation creates, assessing those. Impact and Testing - working out which of the impacts you are actually going to measure, because most of the time you don't have enough time, or energy, or resources to measure all of them. Calculating those impacts, and then finally communicating those results out with your stakeholders.

So, kicking off with Scoping and Mapping. So, Scoping and Mapping, as I mentioned before, basically considers what is it that you are measuring, and what impacts are you creating. To kick off, if you could all log into the Slido, we will have a first question on ‘what your definition of social impact is’. These are the results coming in. Interestingly, there is a front run there, and the definition is the effect on people and communities that happens as a result of an action or inaction and activity project, program or policy, but not everyone agrees on what social impact is and there is no official definition. So, one of the important things to do when you're starting an impact assessment is being really clear with your organisation and your stakeholders, and in your reporting about what you define as social impact and what it is that you're focusing on, and how you interpret social impact to be. We've asked this question before in previous sessions, and we've had all sorts of responses. Some people talk about the SDGs, some people consider social impact to be specifically about the people that are working with, some people think it's more to do with the community. As you can see, there is a variety in responses. So, one of the things to think about is, what is your definition of it, and make sure that all the people involved in creating your impact assessment are clear on what that definition is and agree on what that definition is.

So, moving on - how do you put impact into context? The impact of a tree is very different, if it is grown in the forest to if it's grown in a desert. In order to know what impact actually is, you need to put your activities into context, and the way we do that is by developing impact pathways. You might have referred to, we might know what impact pathways are, but have heard them referred to as logic models or series of change; these are all essentially the same thing. It's thinking about, what you are doing and how that results in someone else, or a group of people or the environment being affected. In putting together impact pathways, you need to do some research, and sometimes a little bit of creativity comes into it as well. It can also be an iterative process. You might come up with an impact pathway, start measuring your impact and then realise that actually you didn't fully understand it to start with, so you have to go back to your impact pathway and adjust it accordingly. This might all seem very confusing and slightly wishy-washy at the moment, so we are going to go through some examples, which will hopefully put this into context.


Okay, as Liv said, these visual diagrams of what impacts are happening are also referred to and slightly different versions as theories of change, logic models, impact pathways, but essentially the concept is the same. It’s trying to get down your impact in a way that is simple, and on paper.

What we have here is an example from one of our projects working with a very large charity indeed. What they asked us to think about is how do they go from a number such as how many people they move into employment and they were dealing with veterans. They said we know how many people we move into employment, but that doesn't feel like it's the end step, it doesn't communicate or impact. It just says a number, which is, comparable year on year, but it doesn't really tell you what's happening beyond that. That's exactly what impact pathways are looking to do. So, you can see here, we have on the left-hand side, we start with the simple inputs - what needs to happen for this activity. Here, it's a case of the funding goes into the organisation. The next set is, okay, once you have that funding, what is the activity that is happening. Here the organisation is running that employment programme. As you can see, we are keeping this really simple, we are not going into too much detail, we are keeping it really simple, so that this makes sense to any other stakeholders that might pick up the report and say what's actually going on here.

The next step is what a lot of organisations are really good at reporting, and that outputs. That’s, to use a phrase, ‘bums on seats’ or people in a room; it's what's physically happening. This particular organisation, they move veterans from unemployment to employment, and they could say, we've done this for X number of people. Then we took that, and we worked with them, asked lots of questions to help them scope where that leads to; so, we removed this grey box. The next stage is to say, ‘okay, when these veterans move into employment, what happens,’ they get greater self-confidence, and that in itself - I am sure it will resonate with a lot of people in social enterprises - is that confidence building is a really good outcome. Another example is the increased earning potential. Through the programme these veterans are getting trained up, they're having work experience, and that means that their future earnings potential has increased. There are some other impacts as well that we went down, but I just kept these two for now. And these we're pretty confident on, you will all be thinking about implicitly, and maybe mentioning to stakeholders, we do this and it produces this increase in confidence or increases potential earnings, it’s a good way to start the storytelling, but then, the purpose of this is to get to that end step, so you can see where it says impacts. We want to quantify or value what the well-being is from that self-confidence, and also what the increased earnings are.

This is another example. So, we have, we’ll come on to that. So, we have on the left-hand side, the inputs to completely different organisation. This is a health organisation that tries to make its communities healthier. It receives funding, and here you can see that the input is, the funding for a particular programme that it runs; it’s for a smoking intervention. As a result of that, this was US based, the programme is run, and what that did is, in a local community it bans the sale of tobacco products to under 21-year olds. Then they weren't sure how many people that was affecting, where that was going to. That was where they engaged us, and ultimately the answers come from the organisation itself, we are not doing any magic. We are just there to ask a few questions and if we remove this grey box we can see where we've come to. So, the output here, and remember this is storytelling, this isn't numbers yet. The output here is there's a reduced availability of tobacco to under 21-year olds. Then that leads to less smokers, it also leads to less pre-natal exposure, so any pregnant women who reduce their smoking as a result of the intervention. And then from there you can see these health impacts. It is going all the way from that funding through to we are running the programme, less people are having these products at a younger age. Therefore, we are expecting lower incidents lung cancer, of cardiovascular disease, and the last one linking to ADHD. This on a page communicates what you are doing, all the way through to what is the actual value at the end, is that you want to look at. And we've got one more example to look at.


So, this last example is looking at a programme that provides education for kids, but a non-formal education, so around sports and extracurricular activities, volunteering, that kind of stuff. So, the first part, the input, is the organisation that runs these programmes receives funding. As a result of that, the activity is that children participate in the programme, and they learn skills, play sports, or they volunteer. Then looking at the ‘bums on seats’ part of it, you've got certain number of participants are taking up new sports, for example netball. Certain number of participants are learning a new skill, like learning how to play the violin, and then more participants are participating in volunteering, for example litter picking. Then we come to this, so what is the benefit of kids doing these things, how do you quantify what does that mean to them, what does it mean to society, etc. So, the outcomes are around increased physical activity, increased confidence, as Euan mentioned earlier, time spent learning new skills, which is something you can quantify, and hours spent volunteering. And then moving on from the outcomes, we look at the impact, and the impact is the bit that we want to measure. So, well-being from increased physical activity, increased confidence, time spent learning new skills, the well-being that comes from volunteering, which is also something you can quantify. And additionally, in the volunteering case, the value of volunteering to the community. So, we've looked at the impacts on the participants, the kids who are doing these things, and then as well considered the impact on society.

I think I saw a question come up that are something around, would you consider negative impacts as well. Yes, you would. In this case, I am not sure there were any negative impacts apart from potentially some parents being frustrated at the noises of their kids are making with their new instruments, but yes, we would consider negative impacts as well. So, just to look at some examples of impact pathways that have been published; Euan is going to take us through a couple of them.


This is an example pathway that was in, so we worked with In Kind Direct. If you've heard of those before, and what they do is take what essentially are waste products from retailers, and other sources and give those to charities that can distribute them. So, this is one around how they take those products and it moves into the impact on the right-hand side and they've published this in their external report, which is why I can share this. You can see this is a bit more of an intertwining diagram and that's okay. The important thing to say is, what's most likely is that you’ll want to focus on one or two key initiatives. Then once you have looked at it for one impact, then you will start to understand, ‘okay, let's also branch out to this one,’ or ‘I think we've got the material ones here, let's focus our other assets on a different programme that we run, etc.’ So, it's not to say, ‘do everything at once.’ It's to say, ‘can you start by putting it down on paper with perhaps one or two key impacts, and then build from there.’

So, if we go on to the next page, we have an example from, again an externally published piece from the Duke of Edinburgh. And this is all of impact pathways together, they don't have the joining lines just because on this, there was a lot of intertwining, so they chose to keep a bit more whitespace. But they use this double spread page in their report to stakeholders that says, what does our organisation do, here’s what it does on two pages, here's how we go from receiving your funding, all the way through to affecting these different kinds of stakeholders. So, you can see on the right-hand side they have little grey icons, and that depicts if it is an impact for communities, or if it's an impact for the NHS, etc. Yeah, also the impact pathway layout is not fixed, this is the way that we've applied it before, but by all means, it might look different for what you're trying to communicate for your own organisations.


Moving on to Assessment and Testing. I can see there are lots of questions in the chat about how you actually measure things like well-being. We will cover that in the section after this one, so the bit around calculating impact. Just bear with us, we have no intention of ignoring your questions, we will just get to it slightly later.

Assessment and Testing is, once you've done your impact pathways, you need to think about which impacts are you actually going to measure, which ones are relevant and significant. Most of the time, whether it's a client that's come to us with the proposed impact pathway, or one we've come up with, or one that an organisation has come up with themselves. Most of the time, it's unlikely you will have the resources to measure the impact of everything, and it's also possible that some of the impacts are not necessarily worth measuring. So, this is what we are going to talk about now, is how do you make that decision about what is worth measuring and what might be worth measuring at a later point, or not worth measuring at all. So, we’re going to go back to Slido and start with a question, which is “Which of these issues, do you think, has the greatest impact?” I am conscious that it's unlikely you will have all quantified all of these issues, just based on what you think have got the greatest impact. These are the results coming in. The strong front run there around plastic pollution. Awesome, we’ve got plastic pollution in the lead, followed by press censorship and animal rights.

Now another question for you, “Which of these is most important to you?” So, to you personally, which of these do you feel most strongly about? The results look slightly different. The point of this exercise is to illustrate that the impact that is greatest in magnitude might not necessarily be the one that your stakeholders consider to be the most important one. I know I personally would probably not answer the same for both questions and it looks like some of you haven't either. What you need to think about is materiality. Materiality essentially is making you think about relevance and significance, so I am going to let Euan go through this in more detail.


Thanks. Yeah, that Slido was really interesting how the top result of plastic being the biggest impact was the second, and it got overtaken when it was ‘what was most important to you personally’. So, a great example, thanks for contributing in that.

And those two questions are essentially what we're looking at materiality from those points of view. So, you can see on the y-axis we have relevance. Well, actually let’s start with the x-axis. The x-axis was the first question that you answered, so what's the magnitude of the impact. Then the y-axis, the relevance, that’s the stakeholders’ perception of how important that impact is. As demonstrated just in that quick example, ‘what is the most important to a stakeholder’, does not have to be the biggest impact. I am sure in your own organisations you can think about which impacts you're trying to communicate on, because you know that your stakeholders are interested in those.

So, on the right-hand side what you can see is, the four different health impacts that we talked about briefly earlier from the health organisation. They were reducing lung cancer, reducing COPD, reducing cardiovascular and reducing ADHD. And in reality, organisations do not measure all of their impacts. That's because of a mixture of, we live in a limited world where we don't have all the resources, we don't have all the time and effort that’s required to do comprehensive everything, so we do need to prioritise them. And this organisation chose to take a materiality view on which ones they prioritised.

So, if we jump to the next slide, you can see here, those same four impacts are plotted on this materiality metrics, and what that does is suggest, which one should be prioritised. We start with the easy one in the top right - cardiovascular diseases. Through a bit of desk research, the organisation found that it was most likely, because of number of people and the severity of it, it was most likely the highest magnitude of impact, and they also knew that that particular disease resonated with their funders.

On the left-hand side, so the top left where it's about lung cancer. That also resonated with their stakeholders, but because of the number of people that impacted, and the severity, relative to cardiovascular diseases, that in total had a lower magnitude. In the bottom right, we can see COPD. We think this is something that was actually undervalued by stakeholders. We think they didn't see COPD as big as it should be. And then in the bottom left, ADHD. Purely down to the low incidence that was seen as not particularly important by stakeholders, but also quite rightly so, relative to the others did not have as bigger magnitude of impact.

So, the purpose of this is it starts a discussion, it lets the stakeholders engage and say, ‘yeah this one is really important to us,’ or ‘this one is not.’ And then it also just makes sure that what the stakeholders are telling you and what you are telling yourself is backed up by the magnitude of the impact as well. And here you can make some decisions, so if you're going to do just one impact, then this metrics suggests that you should do cardiovascular diseases. If you are going to do two, then there's a decision; do you add the lung cancer, because it's important to stakeholders, or do you add COPD, because it's the highest magnitude. It starts that discussion, there is no right answer, but it is a helpful way to start looking at which ones you prioritize and start with.


When you’re doing all of this around materiality, things you need to consider are - Attribution. How much of the impact that you've caused is actually to do with your organisation's activity. And I know there were questions around this earlier, for example, around confidence and well-being, how much can you actually attribute to what you've done, and we'll get to that in the next section. Deadweight - so, how many of the outcomes and impact would have happened anyway regardless of whether your organisation was involved or not, and duration, so how long do these impacts last, are they long lasting, are they momentary, and if so how do you make sure that is captured appropriately when you are measuring the impact. Moving on to the next section. Euan, do you have anything to add on that?


We will bring these to life in the next section, but just to give you an example of a Deadweight, the middle one. If you believe, you have an impact but also that if you didn't have that impact, another organisation would step up and do exactly the same thing, then that's what we call Deadweight. If you think you have an impact, where if you removed your activity, no one else be able to have that impact, it would just be missed off, then that's the opposite of Deadweight, that's having Additionality. You can say, ‘yeah, all of that impact is, because of us.’ But if you think, all of that impact it would happen regardless of if we did or not, then that's something to consider when you think about the significance of these. We bring those to life in the next section as well.


On to calculating impact. So Step 3 of the 4 steps that we are going through today - how do you actually calculate your impact and what data do you need?, which I get a feeling of something that, quite a few people want to hear the answers to. Kicking off again, with a Slido. Where are you on your impact calculation journey, have you not thought about it until today, have you thought about it before, but you need some help working out how to do this. Maybe you've been working on it already, but you know that there's more you could do. Potentially you've been doing it for a while, but you would like to keep the approach fresh, or maybe you're an impact expert in which case, I hope this is not too boring for you. These are the results coming in.

It looks like there is a variety of answers coming in, most people are at the beginning of their impact journey, which is great, because then hopefully this is a useful masterclass for you to be attending. But the point of running this is just to highlight that there are people at different stages of this journey across the board, and we have worked with organisations that have been calculating impact for years, but would like to refresh their approach. And we've been working for organisations that have never done impact calculations before. But either way, it's always good to, every time you do an impact assessment, it's good to rethink your approach and consider whether there's something that you could be doing better or something you need to update.

So, what is the point in calculating impact? The difference between a quantified impact and a different one, and one that isn't quantified is, I hate to say this, but would be impact of what you're saying. A large investment in X will result in many people living longer, doesn’t quite have the same link to it as $10 million investment in X will result in a 1000 additional healthy life years. So, a 1000 more years of life experienced on the planet. It just has a different weight to it and so quantifying your impact can really help you in terms of engaging with your stakeholders, and also in helping you work out what it is that you should be focusing on. Perhaps that’s an intervention that you feel very strongly about, but actually doesn't have that big of an impact, and then maybe for the next foreseeable future, you want to focus on something else.

So, we have impact pathways, what we do is we take the impact pathways, and we turn them into calculation flows. In taking an impact pathway and timing into a calculation flow, there's a lot of research, finding data sources, and there is also some creativity. Inevitably, you also have to make assumptions. So, in all of that, you have to consider where you are going to get the data from, what assumptions are fair to make, maybe another organisation has done something similar before and you can learn something from what they've done, but hopefully what you end up with is a quantified impact. That could be healthy life years, or if it's environmental impact, it might be greenhouse gases, or if you're looking at monetary impact, you might do social return on investment. So, again, this might all sound quite wishy-washy, we are going to take you through a couple of examples to make it a little bit more concrete.


Great. So, we’re going to start with what you can see on the screen is an impact pathway, a simple version of what we saw earlier. Let's walk through this and think about how it can go to a calculation.

So, on the left-hand side you can see that the input is its funding into the organisation, and what that creates the activities. More participants are undertaking the programme that the organisation is running, so they're learning the new skills, new sports, new volunteering. The output from that, the one output that we've singled out here is participants learning a new skill, so that's additional to what would have happened without this happening. Then the outcome from there is learning a new skill X times a week, and the impact from that is the well-being that they feel in an economic sense. So, let's look at how that turns into a calculation.

Same impact pathway at the top, and then the calculation is at the bottom, so we are going to walk through each step of the calculation together, so we understand where it's coming from. Remembering that what we're trying to quantify is that impact at the end, the well-being from frequent skills development. So, the calculation is, starting on the left-hand side, and these are not linked to the inputs activities/output headers, this is standalone. We say here is the number of people participating in the programme, then we think about the duration. This particular programme was about 1.2 years. We say, this number of people, each of them is 1.2 years of this impact.

The next bit we are trying to look at is, what’s the additionality in the impact. So, how many people extra are learning a new skill, at least once a week, compared to before because if they did it before they are not necessarily taking that new impact. We only, as an example, say 40% of the kids did the activity before, they learned a new skill every week before the award, if we bump that up to 80% then we can account for the game there. So, you can see there's the brackets around the third and fourth boxes, we are saying how many people do it now and remove how many people did it before.

Then, we are looking at Attribution. So, Attribution, as Liv mentioned earlier, Attribution says how much of this game happened because of your programme versus other things. As we know life is complicated, not everyone can take full responsibility for everything, so attribution is a really important consideration here. The way that this was determined, was through a primary survey and I think that's really important to mention, that not all of this data you will have already, you might have to do surveys. I'll talk more about that in a second.

Then the last step here is that well-being value, and George has already just posted in the chat, a couple of useful links. The first one I'll talk about is the HACT database. HACT are an independent organisation, they publish economic values of certain things happening. For example, if you have an adult or a kid, there is different values for both. If you have an adult moving from low confidence to high confidence, they have published a figure that you can use to say this is the economic well-being value of that happening. So, if you move 100 adults into high confidence, you can multiply it by that well-being value. That's in the HACT database that George has shared. There is also loads of other impacts in there, mainly around well-being. There's another database that George shared the link to in the chat, and that's the Manchester New Economy database and they’re much more unit costs. For example, it might be the cost of a medical appointment. If you, through your activity, reduce medical appointments by 200 a week, then you can multiply that by what the cost is stated as in that Manchester New Economy database. So, they're both useful links.

Beyond those databases they cover a lot of different impacts, a lot of different economic values, but beyond that there are other sources out there, so it's not to say that these two databases are the only sources that you should look to, but they are definitely a good starting point.

We have two more calculation flows to talk through, and it will be looking through the same thing we go step by step. And I’m hoping by the end of the third one, we will feel confident with what's happening, because they are all quite similar.

So, this second one we're looking at the increased confidence that is felt by veterans who move from unemployment into employment. So, on the left-hand side, we'd say take all of those veterans, the number of them - let's say 500, for example - we times it by the percentage that in this survey, this organisation sent out a survey, we times it by the percentage that said before the activity they were at low confidence, and then after the activity. So, once they've got employment, they are high confidence. And then we consider Attribution and Deadweight. Attribution again, the question and the primary survey would be something like, ‘to what extent did this particular programme help you to become employed on a scale of 1 to 10? If everyone says, 10, it was all down to this particular programme, then you can take all of the impact yourself. But if they say, on average, oh it’s a 5, because it did help but also this other thing, external to that, also helped. Then it's important not to take all of the impact credit yourself.

So, the next step is looking at Deadweight. We mentioned this a bit before, it’s trying to determine to what extent with this activity have happened, or this impact have happened, if you were responsible for making it happen. In the primary survey, another question to address this particular one was, ‘to what extent would this have happened, if you weren't part of the programme?’ To what extent would you have been employed do you think, if you weren't already part of this programme? So, if everyone says yeah, I would not be employed now if it wasn't for this programme, 100% it's all down to this then you can take the full credit of that impact. On the contrary, if everyone says, I probably would have been employed anyway, but this might have helped. So, two or three out of 10. Then, it is important to cut down how much impact you're taking credit for, to reflect that thought. Before we go on to the last one which is the economic value, let us sum up what we've got. We've got the total number of veterans, times by how many got that benefit, how many went from low to high confidence. Then we say how much of that was down to this particular programme, how much of it would have happened anyway, and then finally multiply it by what is the economic value, the well-being value of having high confidence. And that was taken from the HACT database, which George shared the link to. So, you can see on the bottom we've got the data sources. Lots of it came from primary survey, some of it came from HACT, which is the secondary database. On the left-hand side, the reporting organisation could tell us the output figures. Hopefully it's starting to click, the third one will help, the consistency of them will help. So, if we go on to the next.

This last one is looking at the cost savings as a result of the same programme, the employment programme, it's looking at ‘was there a reduction in the number of NHS appointments from those veterans’? Did they, once they move to employment, have less NHS appointments for whatever reason that could be, because they have better mental health, they've better physical health, and also externalities, they might be busier, etc. Starting on the left-hand side, we say this number of people participated in the programme. Then through a primary survey we establish what was the average gain or average drop in medical appointments. So, we say, what's the average number of appointments prior to the programme, and what's the average number of appointments after the programme, and the difference is assumed to be as a result of the program. For example, if we had 100 veterans, and they went from 5 NHS appointments per year to 4 NHS appointments per year, then that on average, then that's reducing the number of appointments. So, then we say okay, how, the third chunk here is the attribution, so how much of that decrease is down to this programme? Then, we say how much of that would have happened regardless of the programme happening? With someone else have stepped in and provided the same support, or actually is this a really unique support opportunity that we've provided. Finally, multiply it by the cost or by the saving. This particular one was from NHS online data, but it would also be available on the New Economy Database that we discussed before.

You can see, each of these calculation pathways, they have the same kind of chunks they just apply to different impacts. You get any output number, times it by what change you've had, times it by an Attribution, times it by Deadweight and finally, times it by what the cost or benefit is. When it comes to taking your own impact pathways, and turning them into calculation flows, having a look back at this recording and just looking at one of these and saying, okay, what's the equivalent for the impact I'm trying to quantify right now, these are great stencil to start from. It is a tricky phase to sit down, and say, ‘here's the impact pathway, let's make a calculation flow,’ but once that has happened then it gets the exciting bit where you can start to put numbers on things.


Thanks Euan. The next section is about communicating results, but I am wondering if, Euan, we should just quickly cover look a couple of the questions that have just popped up on the chat and see if we can answer any of them.

So, there was one question on how often do you need to measure social impact? I think that depends entirely on your resources and how often you are able to measure it, but if you were to measure it annually, then you can compare the results annually and maybe adapt your strategy accordingly. So, I guess my answer would be, how often do you refresh your strategy and then that's probably how often you want to be measuring your impact. Euan, what do you think?


Yeah, I think annually is probably most common but it's very dependent on what the organisation itself is doing. So, if you run a project that lasts three months and you have different cohorts, every three months then it might feel relevant to you to report the impact that you've had with each one. Or it might feel relevant then to say, ‘okay, over a year, we have this, so we want to make a yearly report.’ It's very case dependent, there's no hard and fast rule.


Another question came in from Abby and Lesvos. The question, we know people's memories are flawed and it's hard for them to distinguish between the feelings now and in the past, do you actually need to do two surveys a baseline and at the end?


It's a really good question. So, best practice is to get the before and after surveys, so yes best practice. But in reality, that might not happen. In reality, you might have to just have a one survey at the end of the project, and that's okay but it's really important to state that, because with that comes the risk of looking back and not giving an accurate picture of how you were feeling before an intervention, so there is potential bias there. Best practice says, do a survey before and do a survey after, but if you can only do one after then just make sure you state that whoever you're communicating results to, to acknowledge that it might come with a little bit of bias.


Then there was a question related to that from Steph. When we go, for example, questions you'd ask in the surveys to get this data, and correct me if I'm wrong Euan, but I think on the databases that were shared earlier, there is a suggested wording the questions related to things like measuring well-being.


Absolutely, yeah. So, the HACT database, if you want to, for example, say some people have gone from low confidence to high confidence, in order to use that value you need to ask the question in the right way, and on the HACT database, they suggest the wording for that.


Final question, could you possibly clarify the difference between Attribution and Deadweight?


Yes, I will do my best. So, Attribution is, an event happens but multiple things might have caused that event to happen. For example, the veteran gaining employment. They might have received support from organisation X, but also from organisation Y at the same time. So, you couldn't say that the employment has happened purely because of one of them. You would need to work out what the contribution is from each, so that's Attribution.

And then Deadweight, it is a little bit different. If we didn't do this, would someone else come in and do the same thing. And the question to be asking there is, to what extent is this additional, to if we didn't do anything. Lots of social enterprises are targeting impacts that wouldn't happen otherwise, so Deadweight is likely to be quite small I think for a lot of what your organisations are doing. But if you’re aware of another organisation doing exactly the same thing, and you know that if you stopped your activity, someone else would have that impact straight away, then that's where it's really important to say that we do have some Deadweight. It's okay, all organisations will have a degree of Deadweight, it's nothing to be sad about or ashamed about. It is one of the social values, seven principles, to be reporting accurately and fairly. It's just a case of making sure that to whatever degree you apply Attribution and Deadweight, you are really clear with why. If you think you have no Deadweight, then explain why you have no Deadweight, saying that no one else can do this, no one else would step into the role if we weren't doing it.


Thanks Euan. On to communicating results, which ties in quite nicely. Once you've measured your impact - which makes it sound like it's much easier that it is - how do you communicate these impacts within your organisation, but also to your stakeholders?

Again, we're going to kick off with a Slido, which of these do you find more effective, someone who responds well to stats and well-defined infographics, or do you respond better to personal stories and case study. The results are coming in, and it's showing what I hoped it would show which is that different people respond to things differently. So, some people find stats and infographics particularly poignant. Other people prefer personal stories and case studies. I don't know which one I would answer for this because I feel like I respond well to both. But the point is that, you probably need to do a bit of both. There are certain things you need to consider when you're putting together a report, so who's going to see this and how do you want to communicate your results? Some companies will put together a report that is available on their website, some people use social media, others will do talks and talk about and do presentations on what that impact is. But that might dictate what you're going to focus on, for example, if you're going to use social media, maybe what you want is a pretty infographic because it's quite hard to put a long personal story on that, or maybe you do want to do a personal story but in the form of a video. There are these things to think about.

There are such guidelines to follow. So, you want it to be credible, compelling, and clear. And you need to be really transparent and honest, and all the steps that lead up to communicating your results are important because it will help you do that. So, if you go through the different steps of Scoping and Assessment, Materiality, Building impact pathways. Thinking through your calculations, you can then very easily be clear on what you've done, how you've measured your impact and what the results mean. But ultimately, the impact is to do with how you've made a difference to the people in the world around you. If you’re looking at social return on investment, what you're thinking about is the value of your impact. So, how many people you helped, and how much of a difference it made to each person, divided by the value of your inputs, so your overheads, donations, etc.

So, Euan is going to talk us through an example of a really, really good social impact report.


We might be slightly biased in saying this is really good. This is the Duke of Edinburgh’s report called Changing Lives in the Changing World. This is where they have done pilot impact studies for two countries, for Ghana and Australia, to say, for every dollar received in funding, we create, and they calculated as for $4.27 in social impact. And they come from, well-being values of greater confidence, of frequent participation in skills, of future earning potentials. There's loads and loads of different impacts that they've included in there. So, they've mashed all of those together, and said, this is our total output and divided it by all of the funding that goes in, and that's how they came to that 4.27 number.

But as Liv has mentioned, reporting is not purely the quantification side. And you can see in this report, there is near story in the middle, bringing it to life, adding some colour to what are the numbers and what are the words are saying. They've included their impact pathways, in the bottom left you can see that. On the right hand side, they've included more context around what they are actually doing. And to a question from Nina in the chat a moment ago, where there is some technical language, things like Deadweight, Attribution, Duration, etc., they have also got a section in here, explaining that this is what this term means, this is why we've used it. That helps the reader to go through this and understand fully what this 4.27 means, and also what the Duke of Edinburgh International Award is saying more broadly. This is available to anyone. It's a really good, perhaps a starting point to get some inspiration for how you might want your reporting to aim towards or to look like. George has just posted the link in the chat there, so I won't go on more, but if you're interested in reading it, please do have a look - it's a really good mash of the quantitative and the storytelling together.


Thanks Euan, I realised when I said that, it is very good report, but is obviously quite a biased point of view, but hopefully you feel the same way. So, we went through these all different steps: Scoping, Mapping, Assessment, Testing, Calculating impact and Communicating results, but now that we've done that, we are going to hear from Jerry who is going to speak to us about Money A&E.

Jeremond During:

Thank you, Liv. Thank you Euan, that was really a great session, it really just reminds me of how impact reporting is really a journey that you're on all the time, you have to continually revisit it and revise it, to really demonstrate what you're doing, because it changes and evolves all the time.

So, yeah, we were the winner of the Impact Award from PwC in 2019. It seems like it was only last year, but it was 2019. It just reminds me as well that what we're on is really a unique journey, and it's all really relevant to what you're doing in your work. And we at money A&E, we deliver money advice and money education services. We work with diverse ethnic communities, socially excluded groups and young people. Our organisation is really led by the lived experience of the people, who come to us, and our team, our delivery team is almost 75% of them are people who essentially have faced over exclusion or financial challenges in their lives.

Why did we start working in this way? Both myself and Greg the founding Director had our own personal experience of debt and exclusion. What we wanted to do was to really show those who have experienced debt, we wanted to show them there's a light at the end of the tunnel. But what’s really important, was I wanted to show that it can be delivered by those people themselves, who had faced challenges, and they could actually support others to do that. So, we started really delivering a lot of our services in 2014 or 2015 and at that point, on our impact journey we went for a number of different stages. We initially did not really know what we were needed to do, but we knew it was really important to truly demonstrate what we were doing, so that we could actually show credibility, we could attract customers and funders for our services to keep it going. Because our end-users or customers, they aren’t people who are paying for our service, it's free to everyone so we have to get the money from somewhere else, but demonstrating the impact is really important.

So, like I said, we didn’t know what we were doing, so the first thing we did, we didn't have resource, we didn't have a lot of money, we didn't have a lot of time as well, so initially it was just one of us going around. The first thing we did was use our video phones and we thought, what can we ask customers. We asked them three key questions. The first was ‘why did you come’; the second was ‘what did you learn today’; and the third was ‘what you're going to use from what we've taught you going forward’. And that was really good, it really gave us a reassurance about what we were doing and the value we were having to people. And the second thing was that we just created a questionnaire, really short, quick questions that weren't the same, but we gave it to them at the beginning of the session, and we also gave some at the end. That really showed us how people felt their confidence and the skills and the new things that they had learned, that really helped us.

We then after getting a lot of this decided that we need to take the next step really in terms of that impact journey. We need to talk to experts, so we spoke to a number of universities, and we found professors were really interested in the work that we were doing and wanted to have students, who will study in a similar area. So, they really helped us to kind of look at different ways of looking at evaluation both externally from their perspective, but also internally; what can we do in a resource friendly way, and efficient way that helps us to capture it. And they helped us go through all the things that Liv and Euan just talked about in terms of inputs, activities, outputs, outcomes, impacts and all that kind of stuff.

What we found, in terms of the impacts, is that we were addressing poverty, we were building more resilient communities, we were helping to create social mobility and more employability for the people that we are supporting. We also looked at other things that they mentioned, things like fear to change, logic models, comparison groups or control groups, SROI (social return on investment) and cost benefit analysis. These are all things that we were looking at and as I said it's a continual journey to help you develop your impact more and more.

The most important things for us to measure were the financial circumstances of the individuals, the improved financial circumstances of the individuals we help, the transferable life skills and employability skills that they gained, the improved personal well-being and improved confidence, those were key for us. And we wanted to get that information and report it through a communicate for a number of things. We created impact reports, evaluation reports and press and media stories which are like those case studies that they were just talking about. We decided the best way to get this information out was to send it obviously to our funders, but put it on our website, through numerous social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and our newsletter as well. And these are all really great ways of really showing what you do, and it shows what you do to your customers. It shows what you do to your funders, to your partners, to your stakeholders, and gives a true value to what you're doing in terms of delivery, and also in terms of operating your business. You will find as you go along that your services actually help a number of stakeholders, customers and service users deal with problems and challenges in their lives, and that value can really be demonstrated through impact in languages that they all understand.

The next two steps, which are really important for us, before I finish, is that we decided because we were a lived experience organisation, that we wanted to create a steering committee, which is made up of service-users, really telling us how we can improve our services and make them better for the people that we were supporting, It helped us to design and innovate new services, and find gaps and a Steering Committee was really important, a lot of them also go on to be volunteers and work with us. We then also looked at digital tools that we could use to help collate and capture information in more efficient ways. We looked at things like case recording systems, customer monitoring tools, and customer relationship management tools as well and they all helped us to really digitally capture a lot of that information.

Last year, we were able to support people with over 2.5 million pounds worth of debt, we were able to increase their incomes by over half a million. We supported with over 1400 people, and we found that we were able to increase the confidence and well-being, it can't be over 100%, but 100% of people, even if it was 1%, but a 100% of our service users by improving their knowledge, skills, and helping them to change their behaviour. We were able to increase their confidence and their well-being as well.

That's just a little bit from us, it’s a really individual journey. And it really is an individual journey and something that we’re constantly revisiting, both so vitally important to really show the true value of what you're doing and to attract support funding, whatever it is you need, so it's really vital and a key thing. That’s all from me, so over to you guys, thanks.

Maggie Robb:

Thanks very much Jerry. It's great to hear about your impact measurement journey and the approach you've taken to capture measure and communicate Money A&E.

Hi everyone, just to introduce myself, I'm Maggie Robb and I lead our PwC Social Entrepreneurs club. So, the last thing we wanted to share with you on today's session is, the timeline for our 2021 Impact and Social Enterprise Award and just to give you a little bit more information about that and the process.

So, we will be opening up applications online from 1st May, and information plus a link to the application form is going to be on our social enterprise section of our website. We'll also have articles to announce the awards, and as well with the link to the website, in both the SSC and SCUK newsletters. This year we're also going to be creating some additional guidance for applicants as well, just to give you a little bit more of an idea about what the judges are looking for and what to submit. The closing date is going to be end of June, so it's a good eight weeks of application window and we've increased this from the 2019 Award following feedback from our club members.

Then, after that, over the summer applications will be seen by two initial judging panels of experts. So, they will firstly shortlist entries to 10 short listers and then the second judging panel will select our three finalists. The three finalists are then reviewed by our main Building Public Trust Award judges, alongside all the other categories in the main award, and the winner will be selected. The reason announced the 10 short listers, and finalists in our club newsletter, and by email for all applicants in the early Autumn. And the winner is going to be announced at the awards event itself in the Autumn.

Just to clarify a few points on the Awards. Our Impact on Social Enterprise award is open to all UK based social enterprises and not just our club members. So, we'd encourage you to not only apply but also to share the information on the award with those in your network as well. We'd really love to see a lot of entries this year and as David said at the start particularly from enterprises with an environmental mission, as we approach COP26, and also to hear about some of the innovative ways that you've adapted how you work over the pandemic.

Just to add as well. We would welcome applications from those who just thought their impact measurement journey or may take a slightly different approach to valuation or impact measurement that we've discussed this morning. So, if you haven't got all the detail and all the steps that I covered today, please do enter the award and drawing out impacts through case studies and qualitative evidence as well. If you do have any questions at all about the award process, please do drop us an email at our social enterprise inbox, and either George or I will get back to you on that.

Lastly, just before we close today's session, it would be great if you could share with us on Slido again, one key action that you'd like to take away from today's session. So, if you could all go back into the Slido, Liv will open that and share the screen. That's great to see. Thank you. Lots around what has been discussed this morning. This is great, thank you, and this will help us in creating the materials that we then put on the website as we open the award.

Brilliant, thank you everyone. So, we're conscious of time now that we're just before 11:30, I think that's everything from us. Just to say a huge thank you to Josh and Jerry our guest speakers today, Liviana and Euan for delivering the masterclass, and to everybody who has dialled in this morning, I hope you found it really useful. Thank you very much.

Contact us

Alan McGill

Alan McGill

Partner, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)7711 915663

Julia Simmons

Julia Simmons

Marketing Executive, Client Relationship Programmes, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)7702 698860

Samantha Kelley

Samantha Kelley

Marketing Manager, Client Relationship Programmes, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)7595 849974

Follow us