Grants:APG/Impact report form Q&A
We conducted a short interview about Impact reports for annual plan grants with FDC staff.
1. Why does the Annual Plan Grants (APG) process require impact reports?
Impacts reports are an opportunity for organizations to show the results of programs funded through Annual Plan Grants, and to share important learning with the broader movement. Impact reports also show that organizations are accountable to the movement, and help the FDC and others better understand the impact of the Annual Plan Grants program overall.
2. Reading through these reports takes a long time. What are the top three things you are looking for while reading?
- IMPACT ON STRATEGIC PRIORITIES: How has the organization addressed Wikimedia movement priorities through its programs this funding period? What are the results on the Wikimedia websites?
- PROGRESS TOWARD PROGRAM OBJECTIVES: How does the organization understand its progress toward the objectives of each of its programs, and overall? Has the organization achieved what it set out to achieve?
- LEARNING AND STRATEGY: How is the organization adapting its strategy and future plans as a result of reflections on what it has learned during the funding period? What useful information can the organization now share with the broader movement?
3. That makes sense in theory, but do you have any examples of how to do this?
Metrics can be a powerful tool to show how an organization is achieving results, and also demonstrate progress toward objectives. For example, we appreciate that Wikimédia France includes tables in its progress reports that summarize key metrics by program, since this allows us to compare their objectives and the results they are achieving side by side and to understand the results of their work over time (datasets from Wikimetrics, for example, can be a useful tool here). Beyond metrics, the impact report is a way for organizations to share work that is not easily measured. We appreciate when entities create reports that tell their stories in a variety of ways, including through sounds, pictures, videos, and engaging narratives.
We want insights into the way organizations understand their progress and their programs, and what they are doing for the movement. We appreciate it when organizations are open about challenges as well as successes. We know organizations have a lot of good news to share, but we also want to know how each organization learns and grows from what didn’t go well!
4. That is hard to get across in these super specific sections of the report. Do you have suggestions for how to pull those answers out throughout the report?
The overview section is a good place for entities to paint a broad picture of the how they are achieving the movement’s strategic goals, while the report also gives entities space to show progress toward the specific objectives of each program and to show how each program is related to a specific strategic priority.
Finally, there is an entire section of the report for reflecting on past successes and challenges and describing how future plans will be shaped by what the organization has learned. Organizations are encouraged to create learning patterns based on what they report in this section, in order to share their learning with others doing similar work and to link to these patterns in order to highlight that information in the report.