Once a project or pilot has been successfully implemented, the next step is to build upon this success by sustaining and growing it further. Essentially this means extending the reach of your work to a bigger population. There are many ways of scaling up – from replicating the project across geographies, to collaborating with different organisations towards a shared vision, or even expanding upon the problem your work addresses.
Social organisations can face quite a few challenges in scaling up their work: Keeping a clear focus (e.g. strategic spread rather than just sprawling out); negotiating cost structures and revenues (e.g. sustainable income rather than one-off grants or capital); handling effective supply and demand (e.g. demonstrable results, at the right costs, for a receptive audience); leading organisational change (e.g. founders are replaced by managers); choosing the right organisational form (e.g. grow the organisation, partner, merge, take over, license, franchise).
There are several resources that need to be in place for a pilot project to be scaled without compromising the necessary impact it must have. Regardless of how and when you decide to scale, it is key to first build a shared vision for scaling within your organisation. The Scaling Plan aims to stimulate serious dialogue about this with key internal and external stakeholders.