Public Sector Client

Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (OEC)



The Challenge

Since 2017, Social Finance has collaborated with OEC, a state agency that supports children from birth to grade school in Connecticut, to create and maintain an outcomes rate card (ORC). An ORC is a performance-based partnership between a government, or similar agency, and an external service provider, or a network of providers, that enables governments to pay service providers varied amounts based on whether they achieve one or more predefined performance metrics. The objectives of the OEC ORC include:

  • Shifting the agency toward a performance-based approach.
  • Improving data integration among OEC and its service providers.
  • Supporting multigenerational outcome improvements for families who qualify as low income.

“The partnership with Social Finance has provided OEC the opportunity to implement multiple iterations of the outcomes rate card and realign and renew the agency's vision for the evidence-based home visiting program.”

— Ashley McAuliffe, Family Support Division Director, Connecticut OEC

The Work

Social Finance developed and implemented strategies to achieve these goals through:

  • Service identification. Worked with OEC to identify which of its services would benefit from an ORC, in which service providers would receive bonus payments, on top of their fee-for-service contract amounts, for achieving predefined metrics. Selected the home visiting portfolio as the most promising fit because of its flexible funding sources, including state and federal dollars; evidence-based models; procurement opportunities; and policy goals.
  • Provider engagement. Helped plan and lead 10 community listening sessions to inform the home visiting system’s overall priorities, one of which was collecting feedback on rate cards.
  • Metric selection. Reviewed OEC home visiting benchmarks, policy priorities, and historical data to identify payment-linked outcomes. Metrics included in OEC’s first home visiting rate card included full-term birth and reduction in child maltreatment. In the most recent rate card, metrics include key population enrollment; prenatal enrollment; caregiver education, training, or employment; and prenatal and postpartum care.
  • Payment system analysis. Used historical OEC data to understand OEC’s baseline performance and establish payment terms. Providers receive payments twice per year based on outcomes achieved.
  • Performance management. Receive ongoing rate card performance data to track program and system performance and inform recommendations to providers for increasing metric achievement.

The Results

  • Following the successful launch of the initial ORC in 2018, Social Finance and OEC launched five additional ORCs over subsequent funding cycles.
  • OEC incorporated ORCs into all home visiting service provider contracts, which account for $20 million in spending and provide services for nearly 3,000 caregivers each year.

Contact Us

If you are interested in learning more about our advisory work, contact Managing Director Jeff Shumway or Vice President Jake Segal.