Step 3: Evaluate your scheme
Device lending and gifting schemes incur costs so it’s important that you understand the return on your investment (ROI). In this section, we examine how you can monitor usage and get feedback from beneficiaries.
Stockport’s DigiKnow Device Lending Library, which was set up during the COVID-19 pandemic, offers free-to-borrow devices, free data and remote online support. From July 2020 to July 2021, it provided a total of 2,200 loans (calculated as one month per loan) and supported 326 households across Stockport. The devices helped people to order groceries and medication, communicate with friends and family, look for employment, keep up with education, pay their bills and receive their benefits. Find out more on the Digital Stockport website.
- How many people have benefitted from the scheme?
- How have residents’ digital skills improved as a result of the scheme?
- What could we do differently?
- What is the return on investment (ROI) of this scheme?
- How could our experiences help other organisations?
- Embed evaluation into your lending or gifting processes to ensure timely and effective feedback is obtained.
- Develop monitoring tools to collect data, such as lending and usage figures.
- Use surveys to evaluate the resident’s digital skills levels before and after being loaned or given a device.
- Ask participants to complete a feedback form after taking part in the scheme to identify areas of improvements, which could increase the ROI. You can find an example of this kind of questionnaire on page 24 of Lewisham’s Mi Wifi report.
- Produce and publish an evaluation report to help other organisations learn from your experiences so they can set up or improve their own device lending or gifting schemes.