Increasingly, international non-governmental organisations (INGOs) work through local partners. Constructive relationships between these organisations are critical for effective development. But do INGOs know what their partners really think of them?
Keystone Accountability has surveyed thousands of local partners of INGOs. We ask about trust, support, communication and other areas, shining a spotlight on the relationship between the INGOs and their partners. Survey responses are anonymous so partners can express their opinions freely and the results are benchmarked against other INGOs.
So what have we learnt? There are some areas where the partners believe INGOs are doing well; 70% of INGOs scored above average for being transparent in the use of their funds. Adding value, asking for partners’ advice and communicating were also areas where partners rated INGOs highly.
However, there is room for improvement. Perhaps most concerning, partners believe about half the INGOs don’t learn from their mistakes. Partners rated 57% of INGOs above average for understanding the working environment and cultural context. Only 56% of INGOs were rated above average for listening and responding to partners’ questions and concerns. Partners thought more than half the INGOs surveyed could involve their partners more in the shaping of their strategies and more than half scored below average for their complaints procedures. Reporting is also an area that can be improved as only 53% of partners felt that the INGO asked them to report on important issues. More than half of organisations were rated as below average for the amount of time between starting discussions and giving support being reasonable.
Keystone Accountability’s INGO Partnership Survey has been running since 2010. It provides INGOs with detailed reports on the state of their partnerships benchmarked against other INGOs. This provides organisations with a picture of the state of their relationships with partners enabling them to take corrective action where necessary for more successful outcomes.
For more information on the Keystone Performance Survey, contact Kai [@] KeystoneAccountability.org.