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Evaluation & Learning

Delivering actionable insights for progress toward your mission

We approach evaluation from a use and learning perspective—revealing insights and helping you understand your progress toward your mission. We work to embed evaluation throughout organizations.

Nonprofits and funders of all types use our evaluation services to improve decision-making about strategic resource allocation, program modification and improvement, and understand how work contributes to change in complex systems.

Immersing ourselves in your work, we take a customized approach to your evaluation needs.

We establish frameworks for ongoing measurement, analysis, and learning by clarifying what is most important to measure, identifying appropriate qualitative and quantitative methods and helping maximize evaluation resources. We deliver products that meet your timelines and provide actionable recommendations where appropriate.

“I’ve worked with evaluators who think a lot in terms of process, flow, and efficiencies – and all of that really matters – but only to the extent that it helps us make more change in the world…to drive more resources to organizing groups on the ground. TCC Group understood that innately.”

Ashindi Maxton, Senior Advisor, Women Donors Network and The Vaid Group

“A huge value TCC Group provided was access to program impact data on our nonprofit partners, which was very new for our organization. It was a tremendous learning opportunity for us to understand how we help multiple groups understand their impact.”

Lauren Elicks-McCort, Director of Programs, Youth Inc.

“The evaluation from TCC Group helped to surface differences in stakeholder views of what matters in short- and long-term achievements … that’s no small feat in a political environment.”

Nancy MacPherson, Former Managing Director, Evaluation, The Rockefeller Foundation (2008-17 tenure | Quoted on 6.27.18)

Our tailored approach delivers

Evaluation Planning & Framework Design

The backbone of a strong evaluation system is a framework for ongoing measurement, analysis, and learning.

Evaluation planning takes four steps:

  1. Articulating what you will evaluate, often using a theory of change or logic model;
  2. Writing evaluation questions;
  3. Identifying indicators, measures, and data sources that could answer each question; and
  4. Writing an evaluation plan. This lays out what data will be measured, by whom, how often, and how insights will be shared based on shared metrics.

Often, determining what should be measured is one of an organization’s biggest challenges. We help you surface assumptions, listen to your stakeholders, and immerse ourselves in your strategic goals to develop clear measures. We also assess the data you’re currently collecting and how it can be used more effectively, sometimes suggesting data that you should stop collecting and other times identifying potential new sources of quantitative and qualitative data.

At TCC Group we also develop systems to manage and prioritize your data based on your stakeholders’ needs and your own. We’ll create dashboards and monitoring systems to help you review measures for timely, relevant, and usable insights.

Evaluation Capacity Building

Evaluation for learning starts with a mindset shift. As that shift takes hold, your systems become more adaptive and your organization gains stakeholder buy-in for continuous improvement. We guide your organization through this shift and help develop your evaluative skills—increasing your institutional knowledge and capacity to understand and use formal assessments.

Retrospective Evaluation

This is perhaps what most people think of when it comes to evaluation. A retrospective evaluation is a summative look at the progress a program or initiative has made to date. It asks: Did we achieve our goals? Why or why not?

At TCC Group we have extensive experience and a proven approach to retrospective evaluation for many types of organizations, programs, portfolios, coalitions, and systems.

Formative Evaluation

Formative evaluations are learning-focused to help you get the timely feedback you need to make better strategic decisions and understand the conditions that will make you effective, such as the strengths and needs of the community. These evaluations ask: How are we doing? How can we improve?

Formative evaluations are used early in the implementation of your program or even before you launch to help you learn from pilot results and help target your activities to make a specific social impact.

At TCC Group we use a range of quantitative and qualitative tools to immerse ourselves in your program and help identify where you can improve. This may take the form of rapid cycle learning where the focus is narrow and feedback is immediate, or it may look at various elements of your program over a stretch of time.

Developmental Evaluation

In situations of complex or evolving work, we use developmental evaluation to help you see how a particular intervention is evolving and interacting within a broader ecosystem. Our developmental evaluations help you understand how your work could adapt or be leveraged in response to these factors. Developmental evaluations identify emerging outcomes under different conditions. We often use our research and development approach to understand: What’s working? For whom? Where do we go next?

Organizational Assessment

Many times organizations are looking to understand their capacity beyond a specific program to encompass all of their work. Organizational assessment asks: Do we have the capacity to do our work and how could we improve to be more effective?

To understand your unique needs, strengths, and challenges, TCC Group conducts a data-driven organizational assessment. This includes a series of tools and approaches, including collecting data from external stakeholders to understand positioning and relational capacity. We use our statistically validated organizational assessment tools, such as the CCAT or FCCAT, and provide spaces for internal stakeholders to provide input and reflect on the information.

We always guide organizations through an interpretation of their assessment results, providing analysis, context, and facilitated discussion to reveal their needs and opportunities across key metrics.


To guide our clients in decision-making, we’re sometimes asked to assist in developing a deeper understanding of a specific topic. Research projects may ask: What are others doing in this field, and is it working? Or, how will a trend or issue affect our work? We use fieldwork, literature reviews, and original research to answer these questions. The insights often inform strategic planning, program design, or partnership development.

Evaluation Staffing & Technical Assistance

When you have more evaluation work than you can manage, we often step into that gap. We can take on the role of evaluation program officers, grant managers, or assessment specialists when your internal team doesn’t have the staff capacity. In this role, we may create RFPs to conduct evaluations; design evaluation components for grant management systems including dashboards, monitoring systems, and reporting templates; and help write evaluation sections of grants or assess the strength of nonprofit partners’ evaluation plans. We can also provide direct guidance to your evaluation team members.

Strategic Learning

When you make a widespread, ongoing commitment to evaluation for learning, the results will be apparent in everything you do. A culture of continuous learning and evaluative thinking enhances capacity and effectiveness, improves programs, and leads to greater social impact.

We help foster this culture and develop learning processes. TCC Group can work closely with you to integrate rapid-cycle learning into your programs and administration to solidify a learning culture at every level of the organization. We also bring together learning communities for collaboration across regions or on a shared mission.