The SPEAK evaluation system is an online application that allows organisations to link their plans, results and outcomes within an evaluation framework based on a Theory of Change model. Organisations present their annual or operational plans using a series of drop down menus linked to their outcomes. At regular periods during the year, activities and initiatives are described, tracking results and outputs. Throughout the reporting period, staff within the organisation can add both qualitative and quantitative information into the system to allow for a narrative to evolve about how they are delivering outcomes, both planned and unintended. The dataset can then be used to create reports for funders, communities and partner organisations.

SPEAK in Practice

NEXUS staff have been to the fore in developing tools that support community-based organisations to build self evaluation capacity. We have always stood by the principle of having a community voice central to the designing and shaping of monitoring and evaluation systems that are to be employed in their projects. This has informed how we have developed the SPEAK system (Strategic Planning, Evaluation and Knowledge Networking). This system is currently being used by a wide range of different community organisations as a means of collecting information and data linked to how they are affecting change with their target groups and wider communities. The online system gathers meaningful data that can then help to inform how funders can develop and orient future vision. The National Network of Family Resource Centres have recently used their SPEAK data to highlight the extent to which they are embedded and present within their areas, bringing critical support to families and children across Ireland. This infographic makes use of the SPEAK data.

Nexus Research Co-operative, Ireland