What is the process to develop a snapshot?
There are four key stages to developing a snapshot that are explained in detail in the Demonstrating Value Workbook:
- Map your organization and information needs
- Prioritize your monitoring needs and actions
- Design your snapshot
- Implement your monitoring and reporting improvements
There are clear outputs at each stage:
- The Information Blueprint is a comprehensive map of your goals, key indicators, and the data collection systems that you need to get information about your business and mission performance together in one place.
- The Data Development Plan identifies where you may have a gap to fill - for example, implementing or upgrading a CRM system to track more detailed data about the clients you serve - and clearly defines what these system improvements should deliver. Developing a Snapshot report template is only part of the equation to communicating and managing information more easily. The other is collecting the right information as painlessly as possible. We will work with you to assess what data and other information you need track, how well you are currently tracking it, and to develop a plan for monitoring system improvements specific to your development resources
- The Enterprise Snapshot Design is a draft version of your snapshot, but without actual data in it - a vessel waiting to be filled. We will work with you to improve the reporting capability in your organization, program or enterprise by designing a report template that clearly conveys the work you do and why it is important (the ‘Performance Snapshot’). This will be developed for the audiences that matter most to you, for instance, an advisory committee, a board of directors, investors/funders, an executive team, clients, the community at large. The Snapshot can be developed as a printed document or as an interactive Flash file that allows your audience to actively engage with the information on your website, in a presentation or in a PDF.
How much time will it take?
The table below outlines the steps and approximate number of consulting hours required for a typical Demonstrating Value process, to help estimate the cost of the project. Organizational leaders should expect to also commit at least this many hour to work through the process and provide guidance and feedback. This is only an estimate and the actual hours required will vary depending on the type of enterprise, complexity of snapshot, and the skill and experience of the team involved.
|The facilitator will meet with client to increase buy-in and clarify the DV process||1 - 2|
|The facilitator will give DV Workbook to client and explain what needs to be completed. Client should complete and return within 2 weeks along with documents and data. Client should consult with others to ensure the workbook reflects the larger organization||0 - 10|
|The facilitator will prepare a Draft Snapshot Design within 2 weeks of having received the information provided. This step may include follow-up question to clarify responses. Note: This design doesn’t include real data.||10 - 16|
|The facilitator and client hold a 2-3 hour mini-workshop to review and finalize the design. Participants for this meeting should be drawn from those who will be responsible for providing the data, and from key users of the snapshot. (who should already be included in the process)||4|
|The facilitator will hold a 1-2 hr follow-up meeting with client to critically review monitoring systems against needs (reflected in the Snapshot), and outline a data development path. This will be presented as a single document – “Data Development Plan”||4|
|Within 3 weeks, the facilitator will produce the snapshot in the client’s desired format with the client’s available data (or stand-in data in it will be developed in the near future). The client will provide the facilitator with all data and other information in a timely fashion, and will review progress with Facilitator. The client is responsible for managing consultations with others in the organization as necessary.||6|
|The facilitator will assist the client to install SAP Crystal Solutions, and to provide a basic overview of how the snapshot has been designed using the software.||0 - 3|
|The Facilitator will help the client plan how to maintain and further develop the Snapshot, including any training or updating needs.||2 - 3|
|Follow-up support to assist in developing data and/or updating the snapshot||0 - 18|
|Project Management||3 - 4|
|total hours||30 - 70|
Keeping the process manageable
Our experience to date has brought up three key insights about what makes for successful (i.e. continued) use of Demonstrating Value tools:
- The indicators should be evident in the business plan and/or logic model: using Demonstrating Value’s tools should not require a deep re-thinking of the business model or organization’s mission. Using the workbook can help clarify and focus on the most important things to measure, but in general the work of picking the indicators should not be extremely difficult if the business plan and/or logic model are already well-developed.
- Keep it simple/make it usable: it’s easy to become paralyzed if too many indicators are included in the snapshots. Especially in the first attempt at making a performance snapshot, managers should focus only on collecting the highest priority items for monitoring their business performance and social impact – 10 to 12 indicators at most. This ensures that collecting the performance data is manageable and can be kept up regularly.
- Focus on performance management before external reporting: The snapshots must be set up as a useful, practical tool for internal/operational performance management to warrant the effort required to collect the required data. If the snapshot is only used for external reporting, our experience shows that it is likely to fall out of use. However, if the snapshot is maintained as a management tool, the information collected can easily be repurposed into any number of tailored reports for external audiences.