This brief – the fourth of seven toolkit resources from the Urban Institute’s formative evaluation of the VictimConnect Resource Center – describes the goals of Urban’s proposed implementation evaluation of VictimConnect, a nationwide crime victims’ helpline.
An implementation evaluation, sometimes called a process evaluation, describes a program or service’s delivery and determines whether that delivery of services is being done in accordance with the components of the program’s design. In describing the goals of Urban’s proposed implementation evaluation of VictimConnect, this brief clarifies the relevant research questions and how VictimConnect’s implementation activities will be examined. According to the Center for Victim Research, implementation evaluations of victim services program similar to VictimConnect commonly intend to obtain information on types of services provided; the frequency, duration, and scope of service delivery; characteristics of clients and staff; the degree of fidelity to the program model; and client satisfaction. Using this understanding of implementation evaluation, Urban’s research team developed the research plan described in this brief. The goals of the implementation evaluation of VictimConnect are 1) to document the functions that the program performs and whether they meet the expectations of the program’s logic model; 2) to determine whether the program is reaching its target population and providing intended services; and 3) to assess visitor and staff satisfaction with the technology-based mechanisms through which the program’s services are provided. It is anticipated that findings from the implementation evaluation will provide guidance in improving VictimConnect’s operations and inform the victim-services field by improving efforts by the federal Office for Victims of Crime and other agencies to improve responses to victims via technology. 17 references and an appended table of an “Implementation Evaluation Roadmap"