Evaluating Organizations Participating in the Supported Services for Veteran Families Program

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Evaluating Organizations Participating in the Supported Services for Veteran Families Program

Posted on 12.17.22

Determining which organizations are supporting VA’s mission and which ones fall short

VA grantees work directly with Veterans to provide a wide variety of needed services, including:

  • Finding childcare
  • Case management
  • Housing counseling
  • Financial and credit counseling
  • Accessing VA and other public benefits
  • Finding legal advice
  • Transportation assistance

Potential challenges that may compromise grantees’ success include ineffective use of resources and high turnover rates that may disrupt service delivery. Aptive and Fors Marsh Group (FMG), a subcontractor, help VA measure grantee success by surveying Veterans and their families who receive services from these organizations.


Meeting Veterans where they are to learn about their experiences with grant-funded organizations

Aptive experts have extensive experience designing and analyzing surveys. Together, Aptive and VA distributed a survey to Veterans to assess the performance of SSVF grantee organizations.

A multi-modal survey system

Aptive and VA worked closely together to refine survey questions that yield the most useful data about which services Veterans need and how well grantees provide them. The survey uses the Likert scale, which asks participants to select a response that most closely aligns with their thoughts, such as “highly dissatisfied,” “dissatisfied,” “neutral,” “satisfied” or “highly satisfied.”

Capturing accurate data on recipient satisfaction was challenging. Many Veterans at risk of or currently experiencing homelessness don’t have reliable access to communications technology. In addition, they often struggle with other disadvantages that make completing a survey challenging. To address this issue, Team Aptive distributed the survey through multiple channels, giving respondents as much assistance in completing the survey as they would like. Live agents, interactive voice response and online platforms record survey responses.

Data analysis and reporting

Aptive analyzes data each quarter and provides visual representation of the results. Each report illustrates answers to individual questions and highlights key findings for national-level data.

Custom code automatically generates unique reports for each SSVF grantee. A custom distribution system delivers grantee reports to specific recipients and has the flexibility to modify the recipient list monthly.

Throughout the survey process, VA and Aptive review and revise survey questions, with Aptive incorporating VA’s desired adjustments and improvements.


High- and low-performing grantee organizations identified by survey results

Data analysis and the resulting reports contained enlightening results for VA. Analysis of quarterly reporting examines grantees’ performance nationwide, illuminating both high- and low-performing grantees. VA leadership took direct action to recognize high-performing grantees and look more closely at low-performing ones to determine which type of performance improvement support was needed.

VA has begun studying the operations of high-performing grantees identified in Aptive’s quarterly reporting to identify which organizational behaviors can be applied to all grantees. Supported by survey and reporting efforts, VA is evolving the SSVF program to create a proactive drive for continuous improvement. Every quarter, VA distributes about 1,350 surveys. By the end of fiscal year 2022 (FY22), VA distributed 16,200 surveys.