Feedback Commons is an inexpensive, easy to operate, all-in-one tool for continuing real-time engagement, learning and improving. It turns constituent experience into data that brings issues to the surface so they can hold authentic, problem-solving conversations in which constituent groups learn and improve together. The Commons enables people with no specialist experience to collect feedback data through micro-surveys, manage their data in one place, analyze and share results in clear, comparative charts that almost anyone can understand. 

Fast Facts

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Electronic micro-surveys, Paper micro-surveys

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Tech Requirements

High tech: Smart phone/tablet apps, requires internet
No tech: Pen/paper

Dialogue options: face-to-face, email, forums and blogs, social media groups

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Global, United States

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English, Multiple Languages


“How do we know if the people are better off, whether they gain or lose from our projects? The answer is to ask them. They are the experts on their own condition.”

Robert Chambers

“If private markets can produce the iPhone, why can’t aid organizations create and implement development initiatives that are equally innovative and sought after by people around the world? The key difference is feedback loops.”

Dennis Whittle

“Through this report you proved that you do appreciate the ideas and comments of your funders, clients, and partners. Your request and insistence on comments clarifies and proves your caring and attention for your partners, whether they are closely or lightly related to you.“

Past Client

Feedback Commons can help you in the following stages of your feedback journey:

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We work with clients to design a custom private account that includes a customized learning loop planner, micro-survey builder tool, a survey manager, a data explorer tool, and an insight an action tracker to manage and document the dialogue process. Good design in the beginning means that operating the feedback system is very simple. Almost any NGO staff member or manager can do everything needed to operate vibrant real-time learning loops with constituent groups.

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Each user account has a customized micro-survey builder with pre-selected standard questions (to enable benchmarking of responses) as well as the ability to add custom questions that can be added to the standard question set over time. Users can choose to collect data through email, direct links shared via social media, kiosk links for smartphone/tablet, or paper. A survey manager tool keeps all surveys in one place and enables users to explore specific surveys, combine multiple surveys, and to do time series comparisons.

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Specific survey results are automatically benchmarked against average scores for the respective question. Upon request, Feedback Commons can provide anonymous external benchmarks for standard questions from Keystone’s database of over 170 INGOs and Foundations. All charts can be filtered to compare feedback from different groups of respondents, and it’s easy to create a time series comparison of responses to repeated questions. Net Promoter charts display linked open-text responses to explain the score. And with a single click, you can download any chart for easy sharing. 

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A simple Dialogue Event tool allows organizations to select from a pool of completed surveys to describe the format of the event, who attended the dialogue session, and notes about the conversation and takeaways from the survey results. All charts can be saved as images for easy importing and raw survey results can also be downloaded at the Data Explorer menu to integrate into other data management tools. Localized reports can be created for community dialogue and problem-solving and data can be aggregated to reveal wider patterns of feedback.

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A dialogue planning tool and an ‘Insight and Action Tracker’ is all that you need to manage and document the insights and actions that emerge from the feedback dialogues, and track your improvement journey.

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Keystone offers a range of generic and customized guidelines to using the FC for each stage of the feedback cycle.

The Details

What makes this tool so unique is that it is an all-in-one, easy-to-use DIY application designed to foster continuing two-way communication and collaborative action. Default data analysis options make it simple yet powerful and built-in benchmarks and time series comparison are the best way to understand what ‘good’ is, and incentivise action to improve. Learn more.

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Method and Tech Requirements

With a custom-built account, the Feedback Commons is a DIY tool that enables almost any staff to do anything they need to operate vibrant real-time learning loops. The Feedback Commons also offers a range of free ‘sectoral’ survey options that allow users to create surveys from a mix of standard and custom questions relevant to their sector. They have access to the full range of analysis and sharing tools.

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A custom neighbourhood requires upfront investments of $2,000-10,000 depending on the number of separate organization sub-accounts and relationship focus areas required. . Annual subscriptions for custom neighborhoods, which include basic remote support, start at about $2,000 for most mid-sized organizations. Subscription fees increase by survey numbers and the level of remote support.

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Feedback Commons’ services and tools can be used anywhere and at any time by any authorized user.

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The Feedback Commons is currently available in English. Within a custom account, the surveys can be built, and charts created in any language provided by the user.

Learn more

Case Studies

Read about the impact of listening and feedback through Feedback Commons in these short case-studies:


The tools in Keystone’s Feedback Management System are based on over 15 years’ experience working with over 200 organizations. Over this time, we have learned a few tricks that are easy and really work. They are built into the tools and guides in this toolkit.

Featured on the Feedback Labs site


Ready to work with Feedback Commons? 

Contact Keystone for a conversation and access to a dummy site where you can play with all the tools.

Check out their site here or contact Keystone Accountability here.