Aug 25, 2014

The Social Performance Task Force (SPTF) has recently released three new resources that can help all financial service providers (FSPs) that have social as well as financial goals to improve their social performance management practices.

1. Universal Standards Implementation Guide: Available in English, French, or Spanish, the new SPTF Universal Standards Implementation Guide offers comprehensive guidance on how to implement the practices found in the Universal Standards for Social Performance Management ("Universal Standards"). The guide is organized into four sections:
• Chapter 1 describes how an institution can prepare to implement the Universal Standards.
• Chapter 2 discusses how management can use social performance data to make decisions.
• Chapter 3 provides how-to guidance for each of the standards.
• The Resources Annex organizes and describes additional available resources specific to each of the standards.

In each chapter, the text presents key concepts with discussion and explanation, and then illustrates those concepts in practice through a wide variety of short and focused case studies. This guide can help readers to strengthen social performance management (SPM) practice at their own institution or to support and evaluate the SPM practices of their partners and investees.
Download the guide here

2. Social Performance Resource Center: The Social Performance Resource Center is a free online library of resources that have proved most helpful and relevant to financial institutions implementing the Universal Standards. The resources include guidelines, tools and templates, and case studies shared by real financial service providers with good practice. The library organizes resources according to each of the six dimensions of the Universal Standards, and within each dimension, by standards. It also contains additional sections for resources in French and in Spanish.
Visit the resource center here

3. Stories from Early Adopters of the Universal Standards: Many stakeholders in the microfinance sector began implementing, or promoting implementation of, social performance management practices long before the Universal Standards were released. But, even these institutions report that having access to the Universal Standards - the sector's first comprehensive manual of good SPM practices - has helped them to improve practice. SPTF has documented the stories of nine of these "early adopters" - some FSPs, some networks, and some investors. Each story briefly describes the institution, how the institution used the Universal Standards to improve practice, lessons learned, and results so far. One example is ESAF, an FSP in India that used the Universal Standards to identify gap areas, spark discussions with different departments about which areas to prioritize for improvement, and create an SPM action plan with realistic goals given staff skills and capacity. Among ESAF's lessons learned were to "start with the standard that makes the most sense for your organization" and "make the Universal Standards part of your organization's culture - from field staff to board members."

SPTF has documented the stories of nine of these "early adopters" of the Universal Standards, including ESAF. To download these stories, visit the resource center

Share this Story: