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Becoming a Learning Organization

FSG worked with Kaiser Permanente Community Health on building a system to support strategic learning and evaluation.

Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente is one of the largest not-for-profit health plans in the United States, serving 12.2 million members. Through the Community Health program, Kaiser Permanente invests a portion of annual operating revenue to improve the health of the communities it serves. These investments span from supporting successful school systems and food accessibility in communities to partnering with health centers, public health departments, and other actors to ensure care for people who are uninsured or underserved.

The FSG team was very flexible and responsive. We are a complicated organization and they had to manage a lot of complex work and multiple stakeholders. They built strong relationships across our team.

Pamela Schwartz, Senior Director for Community Health Impact and Learning, Kaiser Permanente Community Health

In 2015, in response to a growing and more complex portfolio combined with shifting community needs and health care policy changes, Kaiser Permanente engaged FSG to help develop a strategic measurement, learning, and evaluation system for the Community Health program, which would:

  • Provide staff with a common understanding of how data can be used to intentionally drive strategy.
  • Ensure that data is collected and used to provide key information on program design, performance, and impact to inform strategy development as well as ongoing program adaptation and accountability.

FSG collaborated with over 200 of Kaiser Permanente’s staff and leadership across various programs and locations to build this system, which included:

  • Developing theories of change for the Community Health team overall and for 5 major workstreams including the Care and Coverage program, Safety Net Partnerships, Community Health Initiative, Educational Theatre, and Workforce Development.
  • Identifying assumptions that influence decision making in these programs.
  • Creating learning questions to guide strategy.
  • Clarifying key outcomes and indicators for each of the workstreams.
  • Developing a program-wide, strategy-aligned measurement, evaluation, and learning dashboard.
  • Developing concrete learning plans based on strategic priorities and building capacity of staff throughout the organization to facilitate, participate in, and implement plans for shared learning.

FSG also supported Kaiser Permanente in assessing its readiness for organizational learning and designed and facilitated an organizational learning process, ensuring that the Community Health team could continually learn from its work and adapt its strategies for supporting the health and well-being of millions of people in the U.S.

Kaiser Permanente’s Pam Schwartz on Becoming a Learning Organization >

See more strategic evaluation projects >

Learn more about FSG’s strategic learning & evaluation work >

About Kaiser Permanente
Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente is one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit health plans, serving 12.2 million members, with headquarters in Oakland, California.