Sometimes all we need is a bit of an incentive to get the job done. You've probably heard of the phrases "payment by results" or "output-based aid" as new ways to sustain behavioural change or guarantee the success of a certain action...
The introduction of this approach to any development program however, adds a list of new stakeholders to the process.
Take this example: giving $50 USD to a water entrepreneur each time he connects a poor household to the water network.
There are a lot of moving parts here!
Before water entrepreneurs can start linking poor households to the network, the households must be mapped. Then, a selection of these are checked by an external party to prevent entrepreneurs from manipulating the system to receive payments they don't deserve. Once verified, the water entrepreneurs need to know where these households are located in order to connect them. After connection there must be, once again, a second verification by an external party to ensure that the poor household was actually (and successfully) connected to the water network. Only after all of this, can payment be given to the water entrepreneur.
Of course, we also need to keep in mind the donor agency that needs to be able to quickly and easily track the progress of the poor household connections.
How do you easily manage this process, and ensure that all involved stakeholders can quickly access the (selected) information they need?
This is where SeeSaw comes in...
Our system is an excellent way to "map" and "check" poor households, allow water entrepreneurs to know which households should be connected, "verify" that connection, and ultimately "dispense" payment.
All while making the process transparent to donors and other involved stakeholders.
A record for each poor household is created, and as steps in the process are completed, new information is added, and can be retrieved by anyone, in a variety of different ways, at any time of the day.
So what sort of information is needed? And how can it be collected?
SeeSaw: Mapping Poor Households
Before any household can be connected, information on each (specifically whether or not the household qualifies as "poor"), must be collected. Fortunately for the water entrepreneur, employees can use SeeSaw's Android application to map each household they visit.
Tim works for the water entrepreneur and is tasked with using the SeeSaw app to determine which households qualify as 'poor'. Of course, simply checking a box indicating a household is 'poor' isn't enough. That's why the SeeSaw app allows users to take photos (of an ID poor card or the house) and capture GPS co-ordinates (which can later be used to verify the location of the household). The SeeSaw app can also integrate with other external systems (heard of What3Words?) to put in place other verification mechanisms.