[highlight dark=”no”]Social enterprises can produce social value through both their internal functions and external services.[/highlight]
Internally for example, social enterprises can achieve and demonstrate social value through employing specific groups (e.g. disabled, unemployed), train and invest in staff development, and purchase from certain organisations (e.g. local or TSOs).
Externally, social enterprises can achieve social value through the wide range of services they deliver and the beneficiaries they engage with and support.
Social enterprises will need to define, measure and evidence their social impact thoroughly to make the most of the new Social Value Act and the competitive advantage it offers TSOs during a procurement process. One of the main differences between a private company and a social enterprise, is the reinvestment of profit by the organisation, so outlining how profit is spent and how it contributes to social value will be a main differentiator for social enterprises.
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- To measure social value, an organisation has to be clear on its aims and objectives, outputs and outcomes for its organisation as a whole and it’s specific services.
- Outputs define the quantity of services they deliver and the number of people who benefit. Outputs demonstrate how an organisation is achieving it’s objectives.
- Outcomes represent the change and impact as a result of the service delivered, providing quantitative and qualitative evidence to demonstrate the difference made. Outcomes help to demonstrate how the organisation is achieving it’s aim.
To implement robust practices to measure social value, I would recommend
1) Having a social value strategy in place with annual targets.
2) Monitoring and measure your social value on a continual basis using a CRM tool as part of your operational management process.
3) Producing an impact report on an annual basis, ideally produced by an independent evaluator.
4) Apply for quality marks that demonstrate and verify your social value e.g. Social Enterprise Mark.
If you need help putting together your social impact strategy, attend our next Measuring Social Impact Masterclass