In a nutshell
Teampact is an attendance tracking platform, consisting of a mobile app and back-end dashboard, designed to work in even the most remote and under-resourced contexts. To accurately assess impact in participant-based programmes, accurate, verifiable participant-level attendance data is key. Teampact offers access to this data.
What we do
Teampact was first built by South African NGO Waves for Change (W4C) in 2018 in an attempt to solve the challenges associated with tracking an ever-growing, geographically dispersed network of after-school activities. With sites in Cape Town, Port Elisabeth, East London, and Harper, Liberia, W4C monitoring and evaluation staff were struggling to collect and effectively leverage accurate and verifiable attendance data. Paper forms were easily falsified or lost, and once collected by facilitators the data was difficult to aggregate and manipulate for reporting.
Teampact’s approach puts ground-level facilitators at the core. This means that the data-collection app needed to be simple to use and to work in any context, online or offline. The app also needed to be data-light and work on any device. Whatever functionality changes we make to the platform, the usability and accessibility of the data-collection app remain central to the mission of Teampact.
How we do it
The platform consists of a mobile app for data collection, and a back-end dashboard for data visualisation and manipulation. Sessions are captured on the app by taking a photo, and checking a pre-loaded participant roll-call at the beginning and end of the session. Various data points are captured in order to make reporting as accurate and verifiable as possible, including:
- Session photo, with face count: The faces which appear in photos attached to sessions are counted, in order to provide an at-a-glance audit of roll-call accuracy
- Session location: Sessions can be geo-tagged, providing another level of transparency between facilitators and M+E staff
- Session time and length: Sessions are time-stamped, and their durations recorded. To accurately assess impact, knowledge of participant engagement hours is crucial
This session data is synced from the app to the dashboard whenever the facilitator has access to the internet and can be stored offline on their device for as long as required. Once data is synced to the central dashboard, it can be exported and leveraged in a variety of ways depending on organisational requirements.
What we have achieved
So far, Teampact has been used by approximately 30 organisations, mostly in the Western Cape, as well as in East and West Africa and across South-Central America. Sectors involved include after-school programming, the ECD sector, and the broader sport-for-development sector, with the platform being adopted by The South African Tag Rugby Association, and The South African Disabled Golf Association.
Here are some of the South African organisations who are using the Teampact platform:
- Tag Rugby Association
- South African Disabled Golf Association
- Waves for Change
- Cool Play
- Earth Child Project
- Dream Higher
- Inspired to Become
- Chrysalis Academy
- Indigo Youth Movement
Reports of benefits from organisations using the platform vary, but some blanket themes have emerged:
- Improved M+E efficiency: All organisations using the platform have reported reduced time and cost spent on monitoring and evaluation, with the Tag Rugby Association reporting a 60% workload decrease in this area.
- Improved data accuracy: Organisations have reported being able to leverage granular, participant-level attendance data in a way that was impossible with paper-based reporting systems. With data already packaged digitally, it can be immediately manipulated and reported on, without the need for time-consuming data entry processes
- Improved data density: Organisations have reported access to data points which they were formerly not reporting on at all. As an example, the South African Disabled Golf Association found out, once they started tracking attendance using Teampact, that the majority of their participant base is female, and have as such been able to seek new funding streams.
What we have learned
Through the process of building and managing the Teampact platform, we have learned that in terms of attendance tracking, configurability of the platform is key. Each organisation tracks and reports on attendance data in a different way. The initial minimum viable product version of Teampact is only very slightly configurable, and as such, we have focused on this feature for our version 2.