By: Laura A. Mills, Senior Director of Data & Systems Operations, and Ana Maria Perez Paulino, Senior Director of Program Operations (Team LAMPP)*
In fall 2020 APCH created two new departments and a fresh team-up was born: Team LAMPP! While not quite as exciting as the first Avengers movie, our departments, Data & Analytics, headed by Laura, and Program Operations, headed by Ana Maria, represent a huge step forward for APCH. Together we integrate data into everything APCH does.
So what? Why is data important?
We won’t be offended if you think data can be kind of boring. It is often presented as just a bunch of numbers, and charts, and graphs, and more charts, with so much information coming at once it’s hard to understand the takeaways. If you ever feel like this when you hear the word data, you’re not alone!
And even worse, data taken out of context can be misleading and result in the wrong conclusions. Our main focus is ensuring that all APCH stakeholders, from staff to our Board to our community, have access to clear, reliable, and consistent data that accurately tells the story and successes of our programs and services. Since the creation of Team LAMPP (not even two years ago), we have successfully completed the following
- Upgraded our member tracking database to Apricot 360, which doubled our service tracking capacity.
- Implemented data share-outs each semester so instructors can use data to inform their class planning process.
- Created an organizational dashboard to track data that indicate progress towards long-term goals.
- Worked closely with program leadership to roll out APCH’s first-ever comprehensive logic model and theory of change.
- Developed regular staff surveys to promote a culture of feedback and learning.
- Implemented new project management tools to improve efficiency across teams.
Improved systems and processes allow us to continue providing high-quality programs and services to our youth members, their families, and our community. This has been especially important over the last two years, with numerous pivots and changes due to COVID-19.
Thanks to these efforts, we were honored to be chosen as amongst the first Data-Driven Champions by Social Solutions earlier this year. Data-Driven Champions is a select group of Social Solutions clients who demonstrate organizational impact with consistent usage of case management software to enhance efficiency, increase funding or improve participant interventions. Click here to read the full case study about the impact of our Apricot 360 implementation, including how we significantly reduced reporting time for key grants.
As Data-Driven Champions we have been working to improve data tracking capacity not only at APCH, but also at our partner organizations. Through Destiny Coaching we had the opportunity to present a three-part workshop on case management software and Apricot 360 to other California Community Foundation Ready to Rise grantees. With over 25 total participants, this was a great opportunity to share what we’ve learned and gain new insights from other partners.
If you work for a nonprofit and would like to talk to us about participant tracking software in general, or Apricot 360 specifically, please reach out! You can email Laura at [email protected] to get in touch with Team LAMPP.
What’s next for Team LAMPP?
With nearly twenty years of combined tenure at APCH, we look forward to continuing to help take the organization to the next level. This year we are working on a significant capacity building project that will help us bring our logic model to life and create an assessment framework for all of APCH’s programs. Stay tuned to the APCH Blog and social media channels as the year goes on to find out more!
Want to know a little more about APCH’s Data & Analytics and/or Program Operations departments? Our missions, vision statements, and bios are below, and please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions or would like to set up a time to chat.
*Oh, and if you’re asking yourself, why is it Team LAMPP?? That’s our initials – LAM + AMPP – overlap the “AM” parts and you get LAMPP! Lighting the way forward since 2020.
About Laura Mills, Senior Director of Data & Systems Operations
Laura started at A Place Called Home in 2014 as the organization’s grant writer, and has over a decade of experience serving at youth development focused nonprofits. With a background in fundraising, program evaluation, and development operations, Laura brings a strategic, structural mindset to everything she does and thrives on building capacity and improving efficiency. Her hobbies include cooking, baking, and spreadsheets, and her favorite Avenger is Wanda Maximoff.
Email: [email protected]
Department Mission: The Data & Analytics Department strengthens APCH’s capacity through robust data analysis, proactive project management, and strategic structural oversight, allowing the organization to more efficiently deliver on its mission and uplifting the voices of our members, staff, and community.
Department Vision: An APCH where staff have easy and regular access to the tools and knowledge needed to best serve our members, and where data are used to reflect and amplify community voices, facilitate understanding and fellowship, promote continuous learning and improvement, and further the equitable distribution of resources in our community.
About Ana Maria Perez Paulino, Senior Director of Program Operations
Ana Maria started at A Place Called Home in 2010 as a volunteer and never left, coming on as the volunteer manager in 2011. Originally from New York, she brings a wealth of experience at community serving nonprofits and a deep commitment to improving outcomes for young people. Ana Maria combines big-picture thinking with attention to the details, perfectly pairing vision and implementation. Her hobbies include archery and reading, and her favorite Avenger is Captain America. Email: [email protected]
Department Mission: The Program Operations Department provides infrastructure through technology, connection, accessibility, training, and capacity building for members, families & staff while developing and maintaining operational systems that enable efficacy and efficiency across the agency.
Department Vision: A team that is clear on purpose, provides equitable access and knowledge to the tools and resources necessary to deliver excellent services, and is operating as a “well-oiled machine.” A community that has the tools and resources to tackle systemic inequities.