GMN 2016: Let’s Talk Outcomes

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GMN 2016: Let’s Talk Outcomes

By: Mary Ann Mullen, Account Manager
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How can foundations figure out if the non-profits they’re funding are having an #impact? #grantmakers #gmn @Versaic http://bit.ly/1MfFuGX

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Friday, March 18, 2016 - 6:05pm

CAMPAIGN: Getting to Impact

CONTENT: Blog

We just returned from the 11th annual Grant Managers Network (GMN) Conference held in New Orleans! The conference offered 50+ individual and plenary sessions on a vast range of topics relevant to the grantmaking community. As you can imagine, this provided an amazing forum to explore emerging issues in philanthropy, gain insights from industry leaders, and share how technology can make grantmaking processes more efficient. GMN was also a prime time to discuss what is on grantmakers minds, one such hot topic was “Outcomes” and ways grantmakers can measure outcomes.

Specifically, a recurring theme we found at the conference in connecting with grantmakers from dozens of foundations, is how can foundations figure out if the non-profits they’re funding are having an impact?

Lets begin by admitting that outcomes are not easy. Grantmakers across all strategic giving areas seem to be struggling to determine what outcomes best fit their programs. We believe that the most effective way to approach the idea of outcomes is really putting yourself in the shoes of the grantee. We gave the grantmaking community a first look at the Outcomes Initiative at GMN, a tool that we developed with The Rensselaerville Institute. The Outcomes Initiative utilizes TRI’s expertise in outcomes presented in the Versaic system, allowing you to experience what the grantee would- from application/eligibility review, through online submission and on to progress and final reporting. While the Outcomes Initiative does not solve the question of impact itself, it helps foundations to get closer to an answer by playing the role of the grantee.

If you are a grantmaker we invite you check out the Outcomes Initiative, give feedback and help make it better. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to outcomes, but collaboratively grantmakers can learn a tremendous amount from each other's programs. We hope by fostering the discussion those learnings can be openly showcased, discussed, incorporated into other programs, and ultimately improve outcomes for everyone.

Thanks to GMN for putting an amazing event together. We're already looking forward to next year!

For more information about Versaic solutions, please contact us at info@versaic.com or 877-712-9495.

Keywords: Philanthropy & Cause Initiatives | Education | Events, Media & Communications | Innovation & Technology | Responsible Business & Employee Engagement | Sustainable Finance & Socially Responsible Investment | Versaic

CAMPAIGN: Getting to Impact

CONTENT: Blog

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