Reading is choosing to take a step towards real, tangible and proven social value through a place-based-model for planning, matching and reporting on social value provided by tech-for-good start-up whatimpact.com
We are thrilled to announce our official partnership with Connect Reading and our shared goal of forging social value partnerships at the local level in Reading.
Connect Reading is a membership-charity connecting local public institutions (such as Reading Borough Council, Royal Berkshire Hospital and the University of Reading) and companies (both local and locally operating) and a wide spectrum of VCSEs in Greater Reading for mutual benefit, impacting the local environment, local community and local economy.
The need for these partnerships has been escalated by the Social Value Act Enhancement PPN 06/20 which requires all government contractors to deliver local social value. Despite the great intentions of the new policy to enhance local wellbeing and environments and alleviate the strain of covid-19, finding the perfect match for volunteering, product & money donations and lending skills for the local community and building commercial partnerships remains difficult. Also, reporting on impact and matching impact data with Government Social Value Model criteria is time consuming.
Responding to the growth in interest around social value, Connect Reading identified a unique collaboration with whatimpact.com. This partnership puts Reading on the map as a leader in grounded social value by focusing on the importance of local partnerships alongside validated impact reporting. Access to the whatimpact.com social value management platform facilitates planning, matchmaking and reporting for all organisations in Reading.
Statement from Kate Graefe, former Assistant Director of Procurement & Contracts at Reading Borough Council
Public sector services are increasingly keen to ensure the incorporation of social value in contracts, measuring meaningful impact. Many local authorities use TOMs (Themes, Outcomes & Measures) as a basis for requesting and measuring social value, but this framework monetises social value based on national figures, rather than measuring local impact. Truly delivering value also needs a network of connections, to understand local needs and match with social value attained through contracts. The combination of whatimpact.com’s matching technology overlaid with local knowledge from a local organisation like Connect Reading is an incredible opportunity ramp up social value impact for Reading. This place based approach to delivery and measurement of social value impact is a significant step in supporting Reading Borough Council’s vision, to help Reading realise its potential and ensure that everyone who lives and works here can share the benefits of its success.
Statement from Tiia Sammallahti, CEO & Founder of whatimpact.com
whatimpact.com is proud to announce the first location based model for tangible social value planning, matching with the best local initiatives and maximising company resources for local benefit. True impact, the actual difference being made, will be reported on by using our globally valid, semi-automated, qualitative social impact reporting tool. These activity-based impact reports will give a clear view for local authority procurement on companies investing in social value initiatives of what has been changing in the area. Unlike social value reporting done by statistical averages or proxy values, our reporting focuses on validated impact data and the true results of the partnerships in the area. It is important to direct our focus to cross-sector partnerships to help our local areas to recover from Covid-19, help the country in Levelling Up and fight climate change.
Statement from Lorraine Briffitt, CEO of Connect Reading
Our vision at Connect Reading is to build a better Reading for everyone, impacting our local environment, local community and local economy. We see this partnership with whatimpact.com as a significant opportunity to put local, impactful social value front and centre in our town. The opportunity for businesses to measure impact on a local level will positively impact staff engagement. It also – most importantly – ensures the benefit of volunteering, support and donations can be felt on the ground where it’s most needed. We’re confident that our member organisations, from every sector, will find this localised view engaging, empowering and impactful.
We invite all organisations in Reading to join this social value initiative!
Check out and sign up for our events we are running with Connect Reading here.
Are you a company in Reading – looking to improve your local social value? Book in a call here to hear about how our partnership helps you.
Are you a charity / social enterprise / local community initiative working in Reading? You can sign up to whatimpact.com for free and find private sector partners to support your work! Book in a call to hear more.
Want to pursue a similar model for your local area / council? Get in touch with email@example.com