Improve Outcomes Measurement with a Logic Model Ladder


Every nonprofit management process needs tools to help organizations maximize their impact. Outcomes measurement is no exception. ESC Consultant Barry Seltser offers the idea of a Logic Model Ladder to help nonprofit leaders better organize their efforts during an outcomes measurement consulting project or everyday meeting.

Outcomes are important to three main components of any nonprofit’s practices: the funders, the organization in general, and you—the nonprofit management professional. Since this idea touches all key aspects of nonprofit organizations, it’s important to understand it. That’s where the Logic Model Ladder comes in. This tool is an excellent way for each individual and operation team tied to your organization to visually comprehend the impact of outcomes. Barry suggests breaking down each program under your organization’s umbrella with the Logic Model Ladder so that all may see four things: the goal of the program (why it exists), inputs and resources (who and what is being invested), activities (what each program is actually doing), and outputs (what is being produced, what services are provides, and what products are offered or delivered).

On the most basic level, the Logic Model Ladder provides a visual of how your organization starts with one set of staff members, funding, knowledge and other concrete entities, and ends with, ideally, increased client knowledge, improved living conditions, an increased capacity to find a job, or a number of other positive outcomes grounded in your organization’s mission.

While the Logic Model Ladder is an incredibly helpful tool to nonprofit organizations, its effectiveness may not be apparent if your organization’s goals and potential outcomes are not defined. If your nonprofit organization could benefit from an Outcomes Measurement consulting project, please contact Ulea Lago, ESCNE Director of Consulting, at or call 617-357-5550 to find out how we can help. ESC of New England offers a 2-hour complimentary assessment visit to all interested nonprofits in eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island.