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How to measure CSR impact with Optimy

When investing, in whatever it is, every organization expects a return. Through the profits generated, the investment of capital becomes attractive and adds value to the business. With sponsorship actions, it is no different. To calculate what was generated, the ROI is used widely by sponsorship professionals.

ROI is an indicator that shows how successful a project is, such as the allocation of resources for a cultural or sports achievement.

Although sponsorship ROI is a widely used metric when it comes to CSR activities, many foundations use a new emerging trend: Return on Objectives (ROO). Created by Paul Pednault, the concept is based on reaching the organization’s goals through projects. This system is ideal for making an intangible measurement in non-profit organizations.

Why should you be measuring your ROI or ROO?

Organizations’ resources are limited and, therefore, should be applied in the best way. When sponsoring an event that does not bring much return, there is a loss of optimized alternatives and an increased opportunity cost.

Often, corporations and foundations need to decide which project they should prioritize at that time. This doubt is even more significant when there are several investment possibilities with close degrees of importance. However, comparing the ROI or ROO for each project will allow you to identify which needs to be met first.

The calculation of ROI and ROO serves to support this decision making. Since they act as a comparison parameter, such an analysis shows the achievements with the best performances. Quantitative and qualitative data become arguments for allocating resources and choosing which actions deserve more attention.

Which Optimy tools can help you measure ROI or ROO?

To understand better the best Optimy features that can help you measure ROI or ROO, we talked to one of our Customer Success Executives , Karim Hosny. He is the person responsible for finding creative solutions to some of our clients, such as Randstad, Universia Foundation, and the Intesa SanPaolo Foundation. Here are some of the features he recommends to measure the return on investment on your grant-making and sponsorship activities.

Budget tracking

To Karim, the first Optimy feature that pops in people’s minds when talking about return on investment is the budget one. Indeed, managing budgets of projects you support can be a tough task. And this feature can help you stay on top of outcomes and maintain control of all your costs. “With this tool, users can create budgets with categories and define the period of time they want to track. Foundations and corporations can also create a specific budget to one of their departments, so they can have an overview of the spendings and revenues,” explains our account executive. Knowing exactly how much money is being spent in which project can for sure help measuring the ROI and taking a wise decision on money allocation.

Automatic filtering

This one might not be as obvious as the budget tracking feature, but it’s just as important. The automatic filtering feature can be a big alley if you already know in advance the type of projects that give you the biggest ROI or ROO. This tool allows you to automatically sort out the incoming applications based on the criteria you chose, so you can focus on the projects that matter the most. According to Karim, this feature can be extremely useful for organizations that have to do more with less: “With this feature, even small teams can easily filter all incoming requests, but also choosing from the very beginning the ones that are worth spending their time on.”

Karim reminds us that this feature can be even more powerful if used together with the automatic scoring tool. This feature rates and compares projects based on the chosen criteria. You can also compare your rating to the score given by your colleagues, according to their own criteria. This way, you can have consistent work habits of verifying that the whole team works with projects that match your corporation’s goal.


Extracting data from our project management software is a great way to create reports and evaluate your investment return. And the charts feature is a great way to visualize all the data inside of the Optimy software quickly. “Users can choose how to display the information, so it’s presented in a way that everyone understands. And the best thing about this tool is that all data stored in Optimy can be used to create charts. It is an amazing feature, especially when forms are created in a smart way, so you can take information straight from the form answers and create charts out of it,” describes Karim.  

Ultimately, Optimy itself is the ultimate software that helps foundations and corporations to measure their return on investment and reach their goal with ease. Birgitta Hultfeldt, project manager at Ideas for Life from Sweden, agrees: “I like to be able to generate reports in the solution, export projects, easily adapt the form myself without the need for any further support from IT. Previously such a simple task could take me up to 6 months to make any amendments. We don’t only grant projects but also provide them with tools to measure the effect/impact on their project in society.”

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