Developing a robust approach to impact measurement with global education funder Atlassian Foundation

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Atlassian Foundation is one of the largest and fastest-growing funders of education globally. The foundation has an ambitious program of work in global education, seeking to catalyse change in the sector through funding innovation and supporting ecosystem transformation and collaboration. It is dedicated to strong “grant craft” and to adopting best practice in its approach – embracing, for example, unrestricted funding and long-term relationships with high median grant size. Atlassian is a NASDAQ-listed provider of team collaboration and productivity software.

Atlassian Foundation approached CEI because its team was interested in revising how the foundation defined its impact objectives and its approach to monitoring and evaluation. The foundation also sought to develop a new approach for both internal and external reporting of impact.

Over the course of eighteen months, the CEI team provided ongoing support to Atlassian in this strategic change process. An early intensive engagement supported the foundation to articulate a new Theory of Change, refine its principles of partnership, and define its monitoring and evaluation framework. This work drew in part on benchmarking conducted of global foundation practice to synthesise insights from leading donors.

CEI and Atlassian then worked together to develop an approach for how the foundation would track and report on its portfolio, and CEI provided active implementation support, working with the foundation senior team to develop the blueprint for ongoing internal and external impact communication.

The result is that Atlassian Foundation has a robust approach to articulating, assessing, and communicating about impact across the organisation. The foundation is now building on the work with CEI by using Atlassian technologies and leveraging skilled volunteers to develop sophisticated reporting and insights tools, as described in this article from an Atlassian team member.