In an effort to pull back the curtain and to share some lessons learned, we’ve compiled some reflections from this process. We imagine this blog will be of interest to any funder seeking feedback from partners and/or considering doing the GPR in the future, as well as to civil society organizations who invest time in providing their responses to such surveys.

What we’d like funders to know about our lessons learned on the GPR:
  1. Valuable, with buy-in: This type of feedback is extremely valuable, both as a baseline for a relatively new organization, as well as a check on progress for more mature ones Having leadership buy-in and team buy-in, however, is critical. We were lucky to have a highly engaged senior management team, as well as supportive colleagues eager to learn, which made all the difference.
  2. Use partners’ languages: Investing in translation is important. For example, we ensured that our Latin America partners could read and respond in Spanish and Portuguese. 95 percent of these organizations took advantage of this, which also strongly suggests that English-only newsletters/proposals/surveys are excluding partners from using their preferred language.
  3. Cater to your curiosity: Adding customized questions tailored to your interests can be valuable. Last year, we were particularly interested in learning more about partners’ thoughts around diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as learning more about how they feel about non-monetary support. There are nuggets in these responses that we wouldn’t have received had we just used the standard survey.
  4. Carve out time: CEP delivers 100+ pages of quantitative and qualitative data. It takes time to process, so it’s best to ensure you and your team will read all of the comments, suggestions, and rankings that our partners have invested precious time to submit.
  5. Triangulate your data: We had the benefit of having information from human-centered research conducted by Simply Secure in 2018 — which provided a lot of qualitative data on what it was like to work with our team. It was powerful to view the two surveys alongside one another to discern trends and to underscore major areas for improvement.

Read the full article about the Grantee Perception Report by Laura Bacon at The Center for Effective Philanthropy.