Current Research/Resources: What Works Toolkit–A State and Local Government Policymaker’s Guide to Improving Human Services Contracting and Outcomes (Nov./Dec. 2018)

This toolkit, compiled by Results for America, provides five recommendations for moving from compliance-focused human services contracting to outcomes-focused contracting. It offers examples from state and local governments that successfully implemented the recommendations. Links to tools and templates are also included.

These are the recommendations:

  • Gather feedback from stakeholders, prior to preparing a request for proposal, to develop outcome-based goals.
  • Break down funding silos to align programs and streamline allowable uses that will enable long-term change.
  • Develop contracts that focus on outcomes that meet community needs and preferential evidence.
  • Fund outcome-based results while incentivizing providers to build and use evidence of success.
  • Build feedback loops with performance monitoring throughout the life of the contract.

The authors assert that, when these recommendations are implemented, government service providers can create a collaborative culture of continuous improvement that builds a win-win solution for agencies, vendors, and participants in government programs.

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