Mind, the Mental Health Charity, has 150 independent Mind associations affiliated to the network. The network can engage with over 200,000 people per annum and offer services ranging from counselling and advocacy to campaigning to managing stock in shops to large scale volunteering programmes.
Ten Local Mind Associations (LMAs) came together in late 2010 with the aim of working more closely together to – share knowledge, resource, systems and ultimately to better understand their collective impact to strengthen campaigning and tendering activities. To enable this strategic goal, the consortium, with support from National Mind, wanted to invest in a shared database system which enabled them to better manage and demonstrate the impact of their services and strengthen the offer to service users.
At the project kick-off stage, we were tasked with configuring and implementing the Views system and supporting the change programme with bespoke training and support packages. But we soon realised that to help the consortium achieve their strategic aim, we needed to take a step back. To measure collective impact, we needed to develop a common data model. Our data strategists had to get under the skin of the existing systems, processes and data models of each partner to identify what was consistent and what was different, what could be done better and what was already working well. This detailed engaged approach enabled us to create a common data model, which still has the flexibility to cater for the bespoke needs of services and Local Minds.
We have an ongoing partnership with the consortium, as well as National Mind and associations across the country – making bespoke Views developments, refining the data and sharing knowledge and insight.