Supporting Rapid Rehousing in Austin
Public Sector Solutions, Homelessness & Housing
2,000Residents experiencing homelessness who are receiving services through Austin Public Health
After officials in Austin, Texas commissioned a report calling for a results-oriented approach to end homelessness in the city, Social Finance collaborated with Austin Public Health (APH) to integrate an outcomes-based funding approach into its rapid rehousing (RRH) program, which funds homelessness service providers to serve an estimated 2,000 Austin residents experiencing homelessness per year. The project, which involved a year of design work, launched in October 2021, with providers serving clients under the new outcomes-based funding approach starting in October 2022.
- Improve outcomes for people experiencing homelessness by incentivizing outcomes with payment.
- Make meaningful progress in addressing racial inequities in services and outcomes.
- Align funding and decision making with performance data.
- Improve system-level reporting and metric consistency.
- Solicitation process realignment: Enhanced APH’s service provider solicitation process to better evaluate proposed service alignment with RRH program goals. Designed a flexible contract structure to make performance-based payments to providers that meaningfully incentivize high-quality outcomes and optimize available funding.
- Scorecard development: Developed an outcomes scorecard to pilot performance-based contracting. This included:
- Identifying outcome metrics that align with RRH best practices, offer a holistic picture of service provider performance, and enhance data quality.
- Creating a scoring approach that incentivizes service providers to achieve successful and expedient outcomes for Austin residents experiencing homelessness.
- Establishing a racial equity metric to address significant and long-standing racial and ethnic disparities for people experiencing homelessness by assessing racial equity across all scorecard metrics.
- Performance payment: Developed process to calculate and distribute performance payments, which providers receive annually based on performance scores.
- Performance management: Providers receive performance scorecard results and meet with APH and Social Finance quarterly to discuss strategies for building on service delivery successes and improving overall performance.
- Developed a scorecard that measures and scores impact to Austin residents served from the time they are referred to the RRH program, through obtaining housing, and ultimately finding a permanent place to call home.
- Implemented a holistic performance management process, built on the foundation of outcomes-based contract management, that enhances alignment and collaboration among APH’s RRH program, its service providers, and its other partners addressing homelessness in Austin. The program will serve an estimated 2,000 people in its first year through a network of eight local community-based organizations.
Partners and Supporters
- Austin Public Health supported scorecard design and funded services through a network of community-based organizations.
- Austin Homelessness Strategy Division served as a working group member throughout the design and implementation of the project.
- Ending Homelessness in Austin and Travis County (ECHO) facilitated data sharing and thought partnership valuable to metric design and performance management.
- Social Finance developed the design and financial structuring of the project.