Over the last several years, local, state and federal policymakers have taken critical first steps to ensure that taxpayer dollars are invested in solutions that use evidence and data to demonstrate better results – but more must be done. Results for America’s What Works Nonprofit Fellowship program was designed to harness the collective experience, insights and recommendations of a select group of well-known and well-respected nonprofit chief executives committed to evidence-based solutions to inform public policy and improve the impact of public investments.

Results for America’s two-year What Works Nonprofit Fellowship Program (December 2016 – January 2019) created a community of nonprofit chief executive peers committed to driving large scale systemic reform who each received:

  • Guidance and support from policy and communications experts to build and strengthen their organization’s capacity to shape public policy at all levels of government;
  • Opportunities to develop and promote policy recommendations at all levels of government that can shift taxpayer dollars toward evidence-based, results-driven solutions; and
  • A community of peers committed to sharing best practices for scaling evidence-based interventions.

As part of the What Works Nonprofit Fellowship, Results for America produced the following tools, public documents and resources:

  • Unleashing the Power of Administrative Data: A Guide for Federal, State, and Local Policymakers co-authored by Senior Fellows Robert Doar, Morgridge Fellow in Poverty Studies at the American Enterprise Institute, and Linda Gibbs, Principal, Bloomberg Associates.
  • What Works Toolkit: A State and Local Government Policymaker’s Guide to Improving Human Services Contracting and Outcomes, released in August 2018 alongside a web version of the resource. This Toolkit provides a framework for understanding the practices necessary to move state and local government agencies and human services providers from compliance-focused to outcomes-focused contracting, and offers five detailed recommendations to accomplish this shift (including links to specific tools and templates for interested governments as well as examples of leading practices in states, cities, and counties that have successfully implemented these recommendations).
  • An RFI Guide: How Requests for Information Can Improve Government Human Services Contracting, created in collaboration with Project Evident, to improve outcomes from government procurement. This Request for Information (RFI) Guide is designed to help governments improve outcomes by increasing their collaboration with human services providers to build stronger, results-focused partnerships. It also leads government and human services providers through a series of Collaborative Procurement Questions that are designed to elicit information from government, human services providers, and the community that will produce an improved procurement process and outcomes, and includes user-friendly tools such as procurement checklist, best practice examples from governments at all levels, sample RFIs, and a model RFI template.
  • Turbocharging Government’s Human Services Contracting, co-authored by What Works Nonprofit Fellow Lauren Sanchez Gilbert and Local Government Fellow Matthew Klein. Gilbert and Klein joined to write a piece exploring ways that local governments and community-based organizations can collaborate to improve outcomes in local government contracting, drawing from examples highlighted in the What Works Toolkit.
  • Improving State and Local Human Services Contracting and Outcomes, a webinar hosted by Results for America and the American Public Human Services Association on February 12, 2019. The webinar, which included more than 150 participants from state and local governments, used the What Works Toolkit to explore how state and local governments can improve their human services procurement processes to get better outcomes for their residents by understanding the practices necessary to move state and local government agencies and human services providers from compliance-focused to outcomes-focused contracting.