Secrets of Mutual Value Measurement

Melina Morrison, CEO, Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals

Professor Paul Thambar, Director, Mutual Value Lab, Monash Business School

Andrew Haigh, Chief Executive Officer, Newcastle Building Society

Peter Hunt, Managing Partner, Mutuo

Kate Creagh, Public Affairs Manager, Building Societies Association (Chair)

This panel session introduced delegates to the Mutual Value Measurement (MVM) Framework, a tool developed in Australia, designed to help mutuals refresh their purpose and vision.

Melina Morrison, CEO of the Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals (BCCM) in Australia, outlined the purpose of the MVM: To enable co-operative and mutual organisations to measure their total value creation (mutual value) through a set of common dimensions and shared language.

The BCCM worked with the Monash Business School, Monash University to develop the MVM Framework.

Professor Paul Thambar, from the Monash Business School, took to the stage to explain more. Paul spoke about three simple questions used to develop the Framework:

  1. What value do you create?

  2. How do you create it? 

  3. How do you measure it?

The Business School worked with 13 mutual and co-operative organisations across sectors to ensure that the Framework could suit any type of co-op and mutual and be generic and adaptable - it is designed to be generic and allows for all sizes of organisations utilise it.

The Framework starts with the purpose – why do you do what you do? Six dimensions were identified through which unique mutual value is created. Each of these dimensions is then measured, both quantitatively and qualitatively, to gauge their overall impact beyond financial metrics.

The Framework has a structured process for adoption and use and since launch has been adopted by co-operatives and mutuals in Australia, the UK and the US.

Peter Hunt, CEO of Mutuo, worked closely with BCCM to bring the Framework to the UK. He and Andrew Haigh, Newcastle Building Society, outlined the process the Society undertook to adopt the Framework. Newcastle Building Society is the first UK building society to adopt it.

With a strong culture and clear purpose, the Newcastle Building Society wanted to be able to bring their good work together, to be able to measure and assess exactly how much of what they were doing was actually driving the loyalty of their customers. The five pillars which underpin the Society's purpose within the region and communities were distilled into the model producing a simplified model of purpose and a blueprint with a five year plan.

Andrew highlighted the positive impacts of adopting the framework and how it has completely changed their approach to member engagement – the Society is connected by the purpose of supporting and listening to members. 

The session moved onto the Q&A. A delegate asked how, with UK Banks putting so much into their ESG strategies, can we be sure that the mutual sector can differentiate what we do in comparison to them?

Andrew responded by outlining how the MVM Framework made the process of trying to map ESG much easier, and enabled them to evidence how the Social and Governance are embedded in the Society.

The final point was made by Paul, who said that the act of measuring value helps to develop the language to be able to talk about the good work that you to, a consistent voice on how you fulfil your purpose.

You can find out more about the MVM Framework here