Sustainability Evaluation of a Volunteer Mentoring for Micro Businesses scheme



MMU’s Centre for Enterprise required an independent evaluation of the HEFCE funded Strategic Development Fund “Sustainability Mentoring for Micro Businesses".  The evaluation had to:

  • provide a common evaluation framework
  • agree a definition of mentoring as distinguished from training, coaching and business advice
  • consult mentors, mentees,and the management team
  • establish the good practices/ unique selling points of the project
  • evaluate the business case for a volunteer-based mentoring model aimed at new-start businesses
  • propose recommendations on what a joint mentoring venture may look like
  • provide a basis for an academic paper

In response we proposed an evaluation framework that offered the following benefits:

  • Clarity of understanding: through a literature review we established a clear sense of what mentoring is and what purpose it serves
  • Focus on your requirements: we evaluated and make practical recommendations for developing the model of volunteer-based mentoring for micro businesses
  • Comparison with other approaches: in addition to understanding the views of the defined consultees we also investigated alternative projects to identify comparative good practice/ unique elements of the project


business-support volunteering sustainability mentoring evaluation