Optus: social impact guidance to improve investment readiness

Cropped shot of a businesswoman making notes during a conference

Singtel Optus is a leading integrated telecommunications provider in Australia whose aim is to connect vulnerable youth with their potential via digital technologies and innovative programs such as the Future Makers Program.

The Future Makers Program is a support program for social entrepreneurs, start-ups and charities who use technology to address challenges vulnerable and disadvantaged people face. The program seeks to develop emerging technological solutions, help those who innovate build their business, social impact and tech expertise, and provide opportunities to pitch for funding from social impact investors.

In order to improve the investment readiness of these emerging tech solutions, Singtel Optus wanted to ensure FM Program finalists were equipped with the skills needed to accurately measure and report the social impact of their emerging tech solution.

CEI developed a Social Impact Guide for the FM Program and facilitated additional training on key messages. The purpose of the Social Impact Guide is to provide FM Program finalists with a practical ‘how to' guide to

(i) develop an evidence-informed program logic model, that actively uses best current research evidence of ‘what works' (including how to map this)

(ii) monitor outcomes, including how to use key data to continually improve the tech solutions, and

(iii) measure and report impact.

Singtel Optus is using the Social Impact Guide for its 2018 FM Program.

By better understanding the ‘what' ‘why' and ‘how' of measuring and reporting social impact, FM Program finalists are better able to develop evidence-informed tech solutions to improve the investment readiness and attractiveness of their tech solution to potential impact investors.