It's easy to get started with Lighthouse. Just create an account, and if you're a member of Locality, you can take the Lighthouse assessment as often as you like for free. If you're not a member of Locality, you will pay a one-off fee of £75+VAT for one Lighthouse assessment.
Did you know? Locality membership costs from just £100+VAT and entitles you to free unlimited Lighthouse assessments, discounted expert support, as well as a raft of additional benefits.
Start your assessment
You can start your assessment by going to your dashboard.
Who should be involved?
We strongly recommend that your Lighthouse assessment is completed by a mix of Board and staff members together. It is a valuable opportunity to share information and compare views on a range of issues relating to your organisation. There is real value in the discussion.
If your Board and staff are unable to have a discussion together, please answer as best you can.
When should you take the assessment?
There is no specific time that you should take the assessment, but it is better to take the assessment sooner rather than later to help you understand if there any potential risks for your organisation's future.
We recommend using Lighthouse annually – ideally in preparation for your strategic review. Lighthouse can provide data to inform that review and will highlight issues which need to be tackled in the short, medium and long term.
What documents do you need for the assessment?
You will need some financial information to carry out the assessment:
- Your last set of annual accounts
- Your most recent set of management accounts
- Your financial projections for the next four years
It is fine to complete the Finance Section in advance as long as the figures are shared with everyone participating in the Lighthouse assessment.
If you do not have four years financial projections, see the FAQs for guidance.
How should you answer the questions?
Apart from the initial page which requires some information about your organisation, the questions fall into three categories:
- Yes or No
- Financial questions where you need to enter figures
- Questions with a slider
Where a question is answered with a slider, look through the potential answers and use the slide bar to the position that most closely meets the current situation for your organisation. That may be between two statements.
If, as we strongly advise, you complete the Lighthouse assessment as a group, you may find that opinions differ between those involved about the answers to some questions. Try to reach a consensus in order to complete the Lighthouse assessment, but keep a note of areas where there was a difference of opinion so that this can be explored in more depth at a later date.
How long does it take?
There are six sections of the assessment, with up to 15 questions in each section. It is up to you how long you would like to spend on each question, but if you are answering as a group, try to keep your discussions structured and timed so that you don't spend too long on each question.
Using your Lighthouse report
Your Lighthouse report will be made up of two sections. One will show you a summary of how well your organisation is performing, and the second will show you in more detail areas where you are strongest, and areas which could need improvement to make sure your organisation is resilient and sustainable.
If your report shows some areas that need some improvement, Locality's team of expert advisors can help. Locality offers a range of packages that you can choose from to help you get your organisation on track.