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Type - Inputs [Academy]
by Changeroo
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Inputs refer to the resources and capacities used to achieve the vision of success. They are contributions that the organisation and stakeholders provide to make activities possible. They include the organisation’s capacity to make the ToC a success, such as adequacy of staff to meet client demand.

One way to distinguish inputs from context elements is that inputs are used up by activities while context elements refer to the conditions in which the activities and wider change process takes place.

Specify Each Input’s Attributes

As is the case for each ToC element, you should describe for each input the features needed to achieve results with that input. Examples include adequacy of resourcing (financial and human), certainty and dependability of resourcing, diversity of resource base, and flexibility permitted for use of resources.

These attributes can be incorporated in your ToC in four ways:

  • Include them as KPI’s for an input
  • As assumptions for an input
  • Include them in the title of an input
  • Include them as a description for an input

Questions to Ask

  • What do we and other stakeholders within our scope contribute in terms of resources and capacities?
  • What resources and capacities are necessary to realize the activities within our ToC?
  • What resources and capacities need to be included to understand the rationale of our ToC?
  • What inputs set us apart from other organisations?


5Cs Framework

The 5Cs framework lays out the organisational capacities necessary to effectively take action. These are capabilities:

Capabilities Attributes
1. To act and commit
  • Members act to satisfy the interest of all
  • Structures that can function efficiently with available resources
2. To deliver on objectives
  • Having access to resources and adequate facilities as well equipment
  • Transparency
3. To adapt and renew
  • Confidence to change, acknowledge and accept mistakes
4. To relate
  • Competence to build and maintain relationships with other stakeholders
5. To achieve coherence
  • Consistent and reliable style of management
  • Results driven structures and process available

The 5Cs framework enables assessment of your organisation’s capacities to deliver on its intentions. It also allows for planning, monitoring and evaluating changes in relation to the different capabilities that bring about societal changes. Those capacities that pose a challenge would be good to incorporate in your ToC and give the appropriate attention.

* ECPDM (2011). Bringing the Invisible into Perspective: Reference Document for Using the 5Cs Framework to Plan, Monitor and Evaluate Capacity and Results of Capacity Development Processes. Maastricht: ECPDM.

VRIO Framework

The VRIO framework is helpful in determining which inputs to include in your ToC. Those inputs that generate a competitive advantage to your organisation, say a lot about why your organisation may be particularly well positioned to realize the vision of success. The VRIO framework teaches us that for an input to generate a competitive advantage it has to be Valuable, Rare, costly to Imitate and the Organisation has to be capable of taking advantage of the input.

* Strategic Management Insight on the VRIO Framework.

Types of Inputs

Different Types of Inputs

A distinction could be made between the following types of inputs:

  • Human: labour
  • Knowledge and expertise
  • Financial: monetary resources
  • Technological: technology and physical capital
  • Organisational capacities: the organisational capacity of critical ToC thinking and effectively implementing the ToC
  • Partnerships and Networks
  • Other

Sphere of Influence

Further, we distinguish between inputs inside and outside the organisation’s sphere of influence:

  • Inside: an input of your organisation
  • Outside: inputs of other actors important to the change process and within your ToC’s scope, as these inputs and actors may also affect the realization of your vision of change. If these are important to the realization of your vision of success, these inputs should be included in your ToC.

More about Inputs

Inputs as a Need

Under the Strategy Narratives, Changeroo presents the “Needs” theme. Needs can occur anywhere in your ToC. One place to focus attention for the needs is a lack of resources.