As one ex-SIB provider put it, “if you leave it until after the SIB to think about what happens after the SIB, it's too late.” It’s wise to start thinking a year out from the end of your contracts about what’s next, so that provision or funding does not fall off a cliff.
What happens next may depend on why you were doing a SIB in the first place:
- Was it a long-term solution for a model that will always require investors? (For example, if there is a long delay between the start of the programme and the achievement of outcomes). If so, all parties may now be able to engage in conversations about longer-term contracts
- Was it a proof of concept for a programme too innovative/risky to fund without working capital? If so, you can now explore different funding mechanisms
For SIB providers who are now able to manage and demonstrate their impact, it should not be hard to attract a wider range of interested parties. Charities in this position are acknowledged to be well placed to navigate the statutory funding environment and are almost ‘certified’ as good impact managers who could succeed in any other kind of outcomes-based contract.
Loop them in:
SIBs involve some quite intensive and detailed performance reporting to specific parties, but potential future funders aren’t part of that process. Local authorities, for example might not know anything about your journey and the improvements you’re making unless you can find a way to involve them earlier on.– Joanne Hay, Power2
What have I forgotten?
One common pitfall is the assumption, designed in at the modelling stage, that financial returns come quickly.
What's the delay?
Firstly, you may decide you need to continue providing the SIB service for some months after the official programme end, to fulfil your duty of care
Secondly, it can take a while to wind it down – particularly if there is a legal company to dissolve.
Allow 9-12 months to gather in the final outcomes, calculate figures and obtain consensus from all parties, undergo any auditing, and distribute money before wind down.
Don’t forget to communicate the results with all the partners and agencies who have supported your work, many of whom will have changed their way of operating to support this new funding model. These partners may be your first port of call for seeking further programme funding.
Finally, the end of your SIB is likely to be a good time for an organisational review.
We developed a completely new facility on the back of the money that we (eventually) made from the SIB. We wouldn’t have been able to do this otherwise.– Contracted SIB provider