Request for Proposal—Data Consultant

Filed in:
News
,
Jobs at SOWA

Organizational Overview

School’s Out Washington (SOWA) is a nonprofit intermediary working to ensure equitable access to high-quality, expanded learning programs in all Washington communities—especially for low-income youth and youth of color. We do this through advocacy and systems building. Specifically, we provide direct services (assessment, training and professional learning) to youth-serving organizations and individuals.

Scope of Work

We are seeking an individual or firm to provide data consulting services for Elevate Washington, a proprietary member data system and public-facing youth program directory. It was created to enable SOWA and its partners to understand the expanded learning and youth development program landscape in Washington state.

The member system is a custom-developed, API-first data management platform that was designed and built in partnership with our technical partner. We are a small staff/vendor team working to increase membership, improve data quality and drive public engagement through a continuous cycle of cross-system optimizations, feature enhancements and community outreach.  We require a consultant to assess our core data, data architecture, and data reporting practices with the goal of providing the recommendations and tools outlined below.

The data:

  • Information housed in Elevate Washington’s  proprietary data system

Other insights:

  • Usage analytics from the data system, email platforms, social media, and public-facing youth program directory
  • Member feedback
  • Competitor insights 


Project activities and deliverables:

  • Audit and assess 
    • the data (quality, accuracy)
    • usage analytics
    • data architecture and taxonomy
    • data tools and reporting practices 
    • backlog activities that include data changes
  • Identify and document data inaccuracies and gaps; In collaboration with the Elevate team, create a detailed plan to:
    •  address data issues 
    •  monitor and maintain data quality going forward
  • Provide high-level recommendations on the design and implementation of planned data changes
  • Design and/or set up monthly report and quarterly analysis templates 
  • Provide recommendations for any other process change

Project timeframe: 3 months


Total cost for the project will not exceed $30,000.

Interested individuals should provide a written response in no more than 3 pages which includes:

  1. Organization/Lead Consultant Background
    Describe the general nature of the organization and/or lead consultant’s work. Provide information on the education, skills, and experiences that uniquely qualify the lead consultant and/or team for this work. Provide examples of related work completed with contact information for the organizations served.
  2. Statement of Proposed Work
    Describe the methodologies proposed to achieve the project deliverables, including how you would structure the work and guide the team through the process.
  3. Budget, Timeline, and Deliverables
    Provide a detailed budget as well as a description of the specific deliverables that will be submitted, the timeline, and expected schedule of compensation.

Proposals are due no later than Tuesday, November 1, 2021 at 5:00 pm. Questions and proposals can be directed to Gloria Jordan. (gjordan@schoolsoutwashington.org). 

Background

About the member system 

The data system is structured hierarchically with the Organization at the top, then Site(s), and then Program(s). Some organizations have one site and one program and others have multiple sites and many programs. Each level has a unique data profile where providers enter information. Some of that information is made visible to the public in the youth program directory. In order to add an organization, users must also add a site and a program. This ensures that at least one program offered by the organization has the necessary information needed to be published in the directory.  Users can also unpublish their programs and hide them from public view.

Member system users create unique accounts (email, PW) and then add, claim or gain access to their organization profiles. Users can be associated with multiple organizations and have different roles (Admin, Editor, Read-only). Users agree to a terms and conditions agreement when creating an account and then a data sharing agreement when adding or claiming an organization.

The member system was redesigned in 2020 to make it easier to join and enter information. The experience is meant to accommodate both SOWA administrators and members. Given the scale and complexity of the system architecture, the interface is only optimized for desk-top use. 

About the data

Data makes its way into Elevate Washington when providers opt in and enter their information. Or, data can be added  through a programmatic import process. Sometimes provider profiles are created manually by SOWA administrators. Organization profiles that are added in this way are considered “Unclaimed” and only include information that is already in the public domain. These profiles do not have users associated with them but organizations can “claim” them once they’ve created a user account.

In 2019, data from the King County Youth Program directory was merged with Elevate Washington. In 2020, applicants who applied for the Youth Development Non Profit Relief Fund were also imported into the system. There are currently 627 claimed organizations and 390 unclaimed organizations. 

The information we collect ranges from demographics to funding streams to program content. The member system design allows for “cohort” data tabs which make it possible to include additional data sets/views that are separate from the core profile information. Implementing a universal tab (available to all orgs) will be fairly straightforward. But establishing distinct cohort data sets within the current architecture will need to be developed and tested.

Data exports can be accessed via Metabase by SOWA administrators. Data can also be accessed by other entities though the API. That said, we have yet to establish this type system-to-system data sharing relationship with an external partner. 

Currently the system functions much like a CRM, with the primary record being all of the data that is held for an organization hierarchy at any given time. Archives are downloaded manually each month and can also be retrieved through database backups. However, the system lacks longitudinal features. Most CRMs offer some kind of historical data views—whether it’s a simple audit log  or a full “version history.”  

About the directory and public website

The public-facing directory showcases program profile data that is relevant to people looking for youth program opportunities in their area. The keyword function searches organization/program names and descriptions and filter options  include City, Zip, School, Offering Category, Days & Times, Cost, Age, Payment Options, and Languages Spoken. Users can also browse using the Google-based map.