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Candidate Outcome Indicators: Business Assistance Program
Implementing an outcome monitoring process enables organizations to track progress in achieving the
program’s mission. With this information, program managers can better develop budgets, allocate
resources and improve their services. This document includes the following suggestions for starting or
improving outcome measurement efforts:
1. Outcome sequence chart – Identifies key outcomes presented in the sequence that are normally
expected to occur. The chart illustrates how one outcome leads to the next and identifies specific
indicators that might be used to track each outcome. Intermediate outcomes tend to be on the left,
and end (or final) outcomes are on the right. The program description at the top of the chart is
meant to encompass a range of similar programs.
2. Candidate outcome indicators – Lists outcomes and associated indicators as a starting point for
deciding which outcomes to track. They were chosen based on a review of the program area and
consultation with program experts. Only outcome indicators are included (not physical outputs,
such as number of classes held; not efficiency, such as cost per counseling session; and not
organization issues, such as success in fundraising or staffing). The focus is on program
beneficiaries (clients, customers, citizens, participants) and what has been accomplished for them.
A data source or collection procedure is suggested for each indicator.
Suggestions and Limitations for Use of the Materials
Involve others in deciding which outcomes and indicators to track. Obtain input from staff, board
members, and clients. As an early step, prepare your own version of an outcome sequence chart–
one that you believe fits the needs of your program.
• Review the project report for additional ideas on relevant indicators and additional resources:
Building a Common Framework to Measure N