LIFT is committed to delivering the best possible outcomes for our members. As a result, we are on a constant quest for actionable data and innovative ideas on how we can improve – and we’ve set up systems to deliver this information when we need it.
We call this approach continuous learning: the process of systematically collecting and analyzing information to learn about our program and improve our work.
How It Works
I. Design: Work in tangent with our members to design high-quality programs that meet the unique needs of low-income families.
II. Deliver: Engage with parents in our four cities to provide one-on-one coaching, direct resources and peer networking opportunities.
III. Measure & Learn: Collect data on our performance and results, and then analyze the data for actionable insights.
IV. Improve: Use what we’ve learned to strengthen the design and delivery of our program – and then re-evaluate to gather new insights, perpetuating the cycle of continuous learning.
What We Measure
Through our continuous learning process, we collect a steady stream of data to help us measure our performance. This information includes:
Listening to Members: Our Constituent Voice Process
LIFT believes a critical step for strengthening our impact is to gather feedback directly from the families we serve. By listening to our members, we are able to craft programs that address the complex, real lives of low-income parents.
We call our systematic approach to gathering feedback Constituent Voice, and it encompasses member surveys, interviews, and focus groups. We regularly analyze the feedback we gather and use the insights to improve our services.
And we have a well-tested model to guide us: our Constituent Voice system is directly informed by best practices in the corporate sector, where companies that fail to listen to the voices of their customers feel the impact directly on their bottom line.
What We’ve Learned
Over the past 18 years, we’ve learned a lot about what works, and what doesn’t, when empowering parents to break the cycle of poverty. Here are just a few of the insights we’ve gathered through years of continuous learning:
• Relationships matter: Members who report strong engagement with LIFT staff make up to three times as much progress on their long-term goals, like securing a full-time job or enrolling in higher education
• Focus on holistic solutions: Outside research and our own internal data agree that social connections and personal well-being matter; members who report strong social support and self-efficacy go on achieve 50 percent more outcomes
• Meet parents where they are: LIFT parents lead extraordinarily complex lives, and we shouldn’t make them any more complicated; in response to direct member feedback, we are piloting innovations to make our services more accessible, including co-location, weekend hours and virtual meetings
By constantly seeking new information on how we can improve, we’ve been able to design services that fit the busy lives of low-income families. And it shows in our results:
• Since 1998, LIFT has helped 100,000 low-income members achieve their goals
• Last year alone, we helped put more than $8.1 million in wages, public benefits, and tax refunds back into the pockets of our members
• Over 90 percent of members would recommend LIFT to a friend or relative – a Net Promoter Score that any corporation would dream of!
Here are a few pieces that influence our thinking on member feedback:
- Listening to Those Who Matter Most, the Beneficiaries, Stanford Social Innovation Review
- Beyond accountability: feedback as transformation, Alliance Magazine
- The One Number You Need to Grow, Harvard Business Review
- Constituent Voice: Technical Note 1 (v1.1), Keystone Accountability
Want to learn more?
Contact Sophie Sahaf at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Measurement Partners
LIFT is proud to be a part of several cross-sector collaborations focused on evaluation and measurement. Get to know our partners: