We were talking to a client earlier and sharing a newly adapted evaluation for Covid-19 times. None of us know what is coming next or when a return to face-to-face work may be possible. For our clients who often work with really vulnerable individuals this means worry, and feelings of frustration and helplessness. Many charities and not-for-profits have adapted their work: turning to online support sessions; texts; video calls; providing webinars and online discussion groups; YouTube channels; and Digital Festivals. The range of adaptive work is huge and we are adapting away too.
Online work is still making an impact – and work that makes an impact can be measured. That is where we can help: we can figure out how to measure that impact.
Even if you are not working with an evaluation consultancy, here are three simple tips you can use.
1. Use polls
Lots of our clients, and ourselves included, are now using Zoom, which has the option to create polls. You can’t do this ‘live’ during a Zoom call, it must be done in advance. There are lots of simple tutorials online about how to create one. We would recommend you try and think of just one question you can use throughout all your work, and embed it as a poll on each planned meeting. You might be working on increasing wellbeing or connection, or trying to help people cope with new day-to-day lifestyles. You could ask if people feel better for taking part; if they feel better able to cope; if they feel happier for connecting today.
This isn’t just available on Zoom, other systems including ‘Crowdcast’ have these options, so do explore if this is something you could do.
2. Send an online survey
If you are connecting or working with people online, create and send an online survey. We use SurveyMonkey, and would happily recommend it. It’s free for up to 10 questions to fewer than 100 people, and that works well for lots of projects. Today, we have just created a slightly more fancy survey which includes demographic questions, assessment of knowledge and motivation, and marketing and enjoyment. It will take people just a few minutes to complete and the team just have to copy and paste a link into the comments option on each of their webinars. It doesn’t have to be complicated though, and this brings us to our next point…
3. Just ask something
Some information is always better than no information. Just have a go at collecting something. We have recommended simple questions in the past and if in doubt, just ask what people enjoyed; what they think could have gone better; and what they would recommend you do in future.
Good luck working remotely and connecting with people, and we hope you found this mini Covid-19 tips session helpful!