Description of Specific Services
While our experiences with every client are different, we often incorporate some combination of the following services in order to provide the most relevant and actionable information.
We work collaboratively with our clients to understand exactly what should be measured—where appropriate, we incorporate established scales, but our priority is to develop the specific items that best align with the client’s needs. While we bring a wealth of expertise to the table, our approach is to act as facilitators and provide information and support to clients as they ultimately decide what it is they want to assess.
Our survey administration procedures are as customizable as the surveys themselves. From pen-and-paper hard copies to electronic surveys emailed directly to employees, our methodology is flexible enough to fit any context. In addition, DCG developed expertise related to maximizing response rates and ensuring participant confidentiality.
We believe in the value of converging information from multiple data sources. Qualitative interviews or focus groups, which can be implemented independent of or as a complement to a survey process, often provide a richer, more complete picture of attitudes and perceptions.
Proven techniques for collecting, managing, interpreting, and reporting data are employed in all projects. We customize data analyses based on the context of the work and the individual client’s needs. DCG’s analytical expertise allows us to determine the strategies that best fit the data while considering how easily results will be understood and communicated by the client. From simple descriptive displays to complex statistical models, we are committed to ensuring that clients have the data and the understanding that they need to effectively tell their story.
From data “briefs” to technical reports, interactive Excel workbooks, and live presentations, DCG commits to ensuring that the right information is consumed by the right audience in the right way. With experience presenting best practices for communicating results at the state and national level, DCG is uniquely qualified to facilitate the dissemination of information to diverse stakeholder groups.
Our background in program evaluation cultivated our ability to logically and intentionally link strategies and interventions with desired outcomes. DCG works in partnership with clients to make data-driven decisions and strategically plan action steps for reaching organizational goals. This work often begins with a tailored logic model that depicts the relationship between needs, goals, strategies, objectives and measures.
We appreciate the value that both small- and large-scale evaluation can bring to an organization and are eager to design the evaluation strategies that best fit our clients’ needs. In all cases, a foundational component of the process is a strong framework detailing the information to be collected, details of the process such as timing and responsible parties, and a strategic plan for analyzing and presenting data. These evaluation plans complement the logic model development process and provide an overall project management structure.
As part of our capacity building solution, DCG offers a number of workshops designed to create a common understanding of evaluation principles and strengthen the culture of the organization to support evaluation. Specific workshops include: (a) Basics of Evaluation and Logic Model Development, (b) Constructing an Evaluation Plan and Managing Data, (c) Basic Analysis and Reporting, (d) Excel Basics (basic techniques), (e) Communicating Evaluation Findings to Internal/External Stakeholders, and (f) Developing Reporting Frameworks and Program Improvement Plans.
A core value underlying our work with all clients is the belief that relationships are the key to bringing about individual and systemic change. Supportive and trusting relationships promote honest, open, and meaningful dialogue for examining the efficacy of programs and services. DCG believes in developing relationships that foster this environment. As such, in all areas, we provide in-depth coaching and support to ensure that clients understand the information that is provided to them and help them bring meaning specific to their work.
DCG has identified a set of core evaluation principles that should be present in organizations that want to demonstrate high quality process and outcome evaluation. To support this work, we have developed a capacity inventory that we can use to examine an organization’s strengths and areas for development.
DCG has served as the lead and collaborative partner on various local, state, federal and foundation grants. As a result, we have extensive experience in addressing grant reporting requirements and completing federal evaluation reports. Examples of successful grants that we have written on behalf of clients or served as an evaluation partner in development include: 21st Century Community Learning Centers, Carol White Physical Education Grant, Safe Schools Healthy Students, Byrne Criminal Justice Grant, Full-Service Community Schools, Math and Science Partnership Grant, and the Welborn Foundation, Inc.