The Challenge

Organisations are recording and reporting their social impact in a centralised, manual way using standard office software, making reporting inconsistent, costly and time consuming.

As a result, data collection is the biggest cost and barrier to effective impact reporting.

The Result

We created Impact: an easy-to-use online platform that lets you collect, convert and report on the social value of an organisation in real time.

Impact engages employees through leaderboards, automates the conversion of metrics into measurable social value and lets you report this in real time.

The Corporate Social Responsibility Problem

Organisations are increasingly expected to be more socially responsible and more transparent.

There are also business benefits to being socially responsible. 56% of consumers say they would pay more for products that meet higher ethical standards and 88% of people would rather work for a company considered socially responsible.

However, reporting a company’s social impact is a tough job. Many companies ask their employees at the end of each reporting year “what have we done this year that was good for society?” and “what was our social and environmental impact?”

Gathering this information across the organisation often involves sifting through spreadsheets and emails, leading to missing data, uninspiring reports, and, ultimately, prevents the systemic change needed to create real, positive impact.

Corporate responsibility can also be expensive: it can cost a medium or large enterprise upwards of £530,000 to report its impact.*

By improving the effectiveness of its social impact reporting, a company can help its employees and volunteers understand how much social change is happening as a result of their activities and motivate them more as a result.

Better – and more up-to-date – data can also be used to inform further, even more effective, social impact activities and strategies.

 

*2011 CSES study (“Disclosure of non-financial information by companies”): total cost for reporting on non-financial information incurred by surveyed companies across Europe:

■ €155,000 to €604,000 for large companies

■ €8,000 to €25,000 for smaller companies

http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/accounting/docs/non-financial-reporting/com_2013_207-study_en.pdf

Corporations that are actively managing and planning for climate change secure an 18% higher return on investment (ROI) than companies that aren’t – and 67% higher than companies who refuse to disclose their emissions.

The Guardian

What is Impact?

  • Impact makes it easy to log all your organisation’s social value data and evidence in one place.
  • Impact transforms activity into social and environmental impact information.
  • It saves you time on collation, communication and reporting
  • It gamifies social responsibility by using features like teams, goals and leaderboards to increase participation
  • It allows companies to capture data all year round, in real time and on any device.
  • Companies can build a report with numbers, pictures and stories, analysing their social impact as they go. All activities, evidence and outcomes are available to view at any time in the visual Impact dashboard.

What we did

As a digital agency that cares about making a positive social impact, we thought that a period of internal testing of the platform would be a great way to help identify issues in they key user journeys. Once we rolled out Impact in the Reason Digital office, and staff had set up accounts, we realised that the effort to log the CO2 benefits of cycling to and from work were laborious, and could result in a drop off in user engagement. This helped illustrate the Internet of Things potential of Impact; wouldn’t it be easier if the platform automatically imported cycling data from our staffs’ phones and logged it on their behalf?

Our team expanded upon this idea, and considered the numerous other integrations that we could apply to Impact. We redeveloped Impact so it could interface directly with other systems, websites or devices to automatically log activities that create a positive social impact, such solar panels, smart meters, impactful web pages, or bikes!

Impact is an online, cloud-based solution that works across all devices with an open API. This allows us to plug anything into it for more automated tracking – taking the onus off the user to input. If we know people are already logging something elsewhere (donations made on a website, for example) then why replicate this data if we can just plug in?

It’s simple to use, flexible and adaptable to our business. It provides a central accessible place to log, store and view all our outcomes / impact data, and fixes One Manchester’s issues with the inaccessible and inconsistent data across our organisation.

Anton Schultz - One Manchester

Results

We have built a Saas product which is cloud hosted and can be used on any device. Our first trailblazer customers have been One Manchester, Places for People, The University of Manchester and DWF. These first customers have allowed us to improve our original MVP and grow it into a fully feature heavy product that caters for a wide range of different organisations all focused on the same outcome; to show the good that they do. Building the tool in partnership has allowed us to tailor features to our customers needs.

Not only does Impact allow you to easily capture data, it makes the conversion reporting process easier. We have made Impact flexible enough to use a range of different social impact frameworks. This way when a volunteer or employee logs some data it can be automatically converted to a measurable social value outcome. These are all then viewable in a flexible report builder.

Impact – measuring social value just got easier!

Visit our Impact website to find out more…

Meet the team

Meet the Reason Digital team that worked on Impact

Reason Digital News