Free 'strength checker' launched by Big Lottery Fund

The Big Lottery Fund has created a new website that can be used by charities, community groups and social enterprises to receive free personalised reports on how to improve their performance and sustainability.

The VCSE StrengthChecker, which will be launched on 1st February, was developed by the BLF in partnership with the Cabinet Office and is aimed mainly at small to medium-sized organisations.

It has been programmed to diagnose the resilience of organisations by asking questions such as:

  • Have you taken any cost-saving measures over the last 24 months?
  • Which of the following best describes the experience of your most senior member of staff?
  • What is the competition like for the product(s) or service(s) you offer?

There are five sections of questions, dedicated to finding out about organisations’ financial history, staff numbers and investment; how they manage their finances; the people in their organisation; their programmes, partnerships and plans for the future; and how they carry out their work.

The website will automatically generate personalised reports once organisations have completed all the questions.

Reports highlight an organisation’s key strengths and areas to help them become more effective, including sustainability, marketing, strategy and planning, track record, quality and impact. They could be helpful to organisations in terms of planning funding bids to trusts and foundations, the BLF said.

Organisations will also be signposted to other sources of support and funding, including social investment.

[from: Third Sector Daily 27.1.16]

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