Tuesday, 14 December 2021

In Kind Direct - Measuring the number of people we support

Project Summary

Review, and design improvements to, the way In Kind Direct estimates the number of end users benefiting from the distribution of products.

Project description

In Kind Direct (IKD) distributes consumer goods, donated by companies, to UK charitable organisations in its network working in the UK and overseas. Working with corporate partners, it also passes on discounts on other types of products and services to its charitable network. 

One of the drivers that motivates both IKD and their corporate partners is knowing that their work ultimately benefits people in need and the charitable organisations supporting them, and it is therefore important to them to understand the scale of benefit.

However, as IKD does not work directly with end users of products it can only use indirect ways of assessing their numbers.  This is even more the case with charitable organisations who act as ‘Coordinating Partners’ with IKD and distribute products out to their member organisations who in turn pass them on to end-users. 

The data to derive a figure for number of end users benefiting is currently collected through:

  • a regular survey of IKD’s network;
  • e-commerce data on number of charitable organisations receiving products through its online platform;
  • manual records of charitable organisations receiving products through offline placements;
  • a survey of Coordinating Partners;
  • take up of some of the ‘affiliate’ products and service discount schemes.

The volunteer(s) are required to review the current methodology, the nature of the data, how the data collected is analysed and used, and whether there are any alternative sources of data that IKD could make use of, in order to make recommendations for whether and how IKD can develop more robust and dynamic measure(s) of the number of end users benefiting.

The expectation is that the deliverables will be a re-designed questionnaire, with associated recommendations for analysing the returns; re-worked calculations using IKD’s existing data and additional data sources to get an even better measure; and recommendations for other measures for number of end users benefiting in conjunction with the number of people receiving products.  However, this may be adjusted in the detailed project scoping or during the project.

The project could readily be undertaken by a single volunteer, but may also suit two volunteers working together.

The project will particularly suit a volunteer with experience of performance or outcome measurement.


Time commitmentThe actual time required will need to be agreed during the detailed scoping meeting between the volunteer(s) and IKD; and will depend on how well the existing methodology stands up to external scrutiny.  It may be as little as two person-days, and is not expected to exceed five person-days unless the recommendations include extensive questionnaire piloting, post-questionnaire analysis and review, or alternative non-questionnaire methods recommended

Location: The work can be done remotely.


If you feel you are able to offer your assistance please complete the application form and return along with your CV to ProBonoOR@theorsociety.com by Wednesday 5 January 2022.

The OR Society fully supports equal opportunities. As such, we welcome applications from the partially sighted or blind, or those with disabilities.

Information about the organisation: 

In Kind Direct is the UK charity distributing consumer goods donated by companies to UK charitable organisations working in the UK and overseas. Founded in 1996 by HRH The Prince of Wales, they offer a simple solution to connect companies and their products to thousands of charities, community groups, foodbanks and schools supporting our communities. Together they make a difference to 174,000 people each week.


For further information about In Kind Direct please visit www.inkinddirect.org

For further information about the Pro Bono OR scheme, please visit: www.theorsociety.com/Probono  or email ProBonoOR@theorsociety.com

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In Kind Direct - Measuring the number of people we support

Project Summary Review, and design improvements to, the way In Kind Direct estimates the number of end users benefiting from the distributio...