Posted on January 22, 2019 by staff

Social impact tool captures £50m+ in social value


A bespoke social value reporting tool to track and record the value of organisations’ social value efforts has measured an impact of over £50 million.

After three years of research and development, Impact was created and built in-house by Reason Digital, a social enterprise specialising in working exclusively with pro-social organisations.

The Impact social value reporting tool streamlines the way companies can capture and monitor business processes, assets or any organisational activity that has a social or environmental benefit and produces real-time reports on its impact.

This process is completely automated and converts activity into meaningful social value outcomes. The ease of use and accessibility of the web-based tool encourages employee engagement in an organisation’s social value strategy and inspires a common culture of responsible business practice.

Over the course of 2018, Impact has been deployed by global businesses such as DWF Law, as well placemaking organisations Places for People and One Manchester.

Impact is also embedded in charities such as Breast Cancer Care and Helpforce, the NHS volunteering hub, and has been adapted for collecting a wide range of evaluation data for the charity New Philanthropy Capital, which specialises in working with charities and funders to improve voluntary sector effectiveness.

Demonstrating social value across a swathe of sectors the responsive tool, which provides real-time and accurate data, has recorded a combined social impact of over £50 million across the client base.

Matt Haworth and Ed Cox, co-founders of Reason Digital, developed the company with the mission to use ‘digital to do good’ and only work on projects that ‘have a positive social impact on people and improve lives’.

“We built Impact to sit at the heart of social value strategies for a range of charities and businesses. It offers all data in one place, so companies can immediately see the impact they are having,” said Haworth.

“Ease of measurement allows the tool to empower users, encourage companies to improve their social value and help socially inclined staff assess their successes.

“Impact started as a government funded project to explore a better way to measure social value. Following considerable development Impact boasts a team of social value experts who deliver our proven and feature-rich tool which has gained traction within a growing client base.

“It’s a constantly evolving tool, developed in-house by our own developers, who frequently enhance its functionality.”

Ty Jones, director of corporate social responsibility and engagement at DWF, added: “Businesses are increasingly expected to define their social value and demonstrate how they contribute towards making a positive societal impact.

“Impact helps us to engage our people through real time data and a level of transparency that helps ensure that our actions are meaningful when we give our time, skills and business intelligence to make a difference.”

Jamie Dickinson, head of social value at Places for People, said: “As a commercial business with a strong social purpose, we work hard to integrate social value into all work.

“We wanted to use a tool which could assess our investment in social activity effectively and measure the value we are generating in the communities we serve.

“Impact is easy to-use and automatically converts our CSR activities into meaningful social value data. It’s also a valuable staff engagement tool, helping front-line staff to recognise the social value in what they do every single day and galvanising them to do even more.

“Importantly, its showing how social value is delivered across our diverse group and providing a platform to demonstrate our collective impact.”

Anton Schultz, social investment manager at One Manchester, commented: “We use Impact to monitor the social impact our work has on our residents’ lives, in the wider community in Manchester and to measure the environmental and social projects we lead.

“Our social investment strategy outlines our aims for the year, so we use Impact to measure the outcomes against our strategic plan. Our staff just log in directly, upload their hours and we can print off reports in just one click.”