Creative Consulting & Development Works

We are a research, evaluation and communications consultancy, servicing nonprofits, governments and donors with innovative solutions within the development context.

Tsholofelo attends the Making CSI Matter Conference

21 July 2013
“Making CSI Matter” Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

Making CSI Matter Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

by Tsholofelo Khoza

Creative Consulting & Development Works new Business Development Manager, Tsholofelo Khoza, attended the Trialogue Making CSI Matter Conference on 28-29 May at the Wanderers Club in Illovo, Johannesburg.

Now in its sixth year, the conference is established as South Africa’s CSI event of the year. Nearly 50 speakers inspired more than 350 delegates, including CSI managers, representatives from the NGO sector and various service providers to the CSI industry, including Creative Consulting & Development Works, through a variety of formats, including panel discussions, workshops and case study breakaways.

The event was created to provide CSI managers with basic tools to manage CSI initiatives, highlighting the importance of meaningful monitoring, evaluation (M&E) and reporting to various stakeholders. CSI and NGO managers were given the platform to honestly debate issues around M&E and reporting.

“Making CSI Matter” Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

Making CSI Matter Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

One brave NGO manager expressed her frustration with CSI departments requiring results from projects in a short space of time, when impact can only be measured in the long-term. CSI managers responded by acknowledging this frustration, and highlighting that they are constantly confronted with the predicament of needing to please board members “who are only interested in numbers, they want to know what their investments have achieved now” – while balancing the interests and realities of their NGO partners, including the fact that impact cannot be measured in the long-term.

Some CSI managers have themselves worked in the NGO space, but once they transition into the corporate environment, they are forced to require of their former NGO colleagues to do the impossible – report long-term impact in the short-term.

“Making CSI Matter” Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

Making CSI Matter Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

This challenge directly highlights the importance of our work at CC&DW. We have a strong development background, which we use to assist CSI managers to translate “developmentise” into corporate speak. We work with CSI managers to help them clarify and refine their CSI strategy so that it aligns with the core function of the business, helping them report CSI initiatives in a meaningful way. Therefore by helping CSI managers quantify the importance of the work done by their carefully selected NGO partners during the entire lifecycle of each project, we help bridge the gap between corporates and their NGO partners.

“Making CSI Matter” Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

Making CSI Matter Conference May 2013, © Denise Archer/Trialogue

Increasingly, businesses recognise the broader role they play in society. While the corporate sector is committed to becoming more involved in society, changes in legislation and the expectations of stakeholders and communities require that companies thoughtfully engage in social and economic development.

Navigating this changing environment while making responsible social investment decisions can be challenging. CSI Managers must select organisations appropriately and ensure programmes are aligned with company goals, legislation and community needs.

With ten years of experience, Creative Consulting & Development Works recognises these challenges and is a trusted strategic partner in the development sector, servicing clients ranging from international donors and NGOs, to national and community-based organisations. Our corporate social investment service, CSI Works, is a tailored solution designed to enable businesses and CSI beneficiaries to implement social investment programmes that apply effective frameworks.

Our team of experts provides support to clients such as due diligence, strategic planning, monitoring, capacity building, evaluation and communications, as part of our CSI Works Model for Sustainability & Impact.

Contact us for more information about our CSI Works Model, including Due Diligence, Grant Management, Evaluation & Reporting, and Communicating Success.

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