Museum Organisational Health Check


The Organisational Health Check (previously known as the ‘Museum MOT’) is a self-assessment tool to help museums benchmark activity, identify what they are doing well, and define areas that need improvement.

The programme has been created in partnership with our museum development colleagues across England (MDUK).

Since launching in 2018, 41 museums in the south east have completed the programme, using it to inform business planning and workforce development.

Participants can also apply for a £2,000 grant to action a development need identified during the process.

How to apply

We are looking to recruit 10 museums from the south east of England to complete the Organisational Health Check with us in 2021/22.

To register your interest, please contact your local Museum Development Officer and complete an Expression of Interest form.

We will assess Expressions of Interest on a rolling basis and award support grants by 1 March 2022.

How it works

At its heart, the Organisational Health Check is a self-assessment tool.

Participating museums will complete an online self-assessment survey about their organisation.

To prepare, museums are asked to form a small sub-team to discuss the survey questions, facilitated by one of our Museum Development Officers.  Once the scoring is agreed, one person from the museum enters the agreed scores into an online survey.

We recommended that your sub-team is comprised of at least three people – one senior manager/Trustee; one Front of House worker (staff or volunteer) and one other team member (e.g., curator, education officer, retail manager, volunteer coordinator, etc).

Once the online questionnaire is submitted, your Museum Development Officer will write an Advisory Report pulling out key development priorities and signposting to helpful resources and support.  This report is yours to keep. It can be used for benchmarking, forward planning, workforce development, and as support evidence in grant applications (i.e., demonstrating need).

Grant support

Museums who complete the Organisational Health Check in 2021/22 are eligible to apply for a £2,000 grant from South East Museum Development to action one of the key development priorities identified in their Advisory Report.  You will have 12 months to complete the funded activity.

One year on, we will catch up with participating museums to complete a follow up report so see what progress has been made, and the impact the Organisational Health Check and support grant has had on your museum.

Grant application deadline is 1 February 2022

The grant is only open to museums that have completed the Organisational Health Check with us in 2021/22.  Please consult with your local Museum Development Officer before submitting the grant application.

Who can take part?

The Organisational Health Check is open to:

  • museums in the south east of England (Sussex, Surrey, Kent, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Isle of Wight)
  • museums that are Accredited or formally Working Towards Accreditation
  • non-Accredited museums, nationals and NPOs can take part in the process, but they won’t be eligible to apply for the grant.
  • we will prioritise museums that have not yet completed an Organisational Health Check.

The Organisational Health Check is particularly useful for museums that:

  • are undergoing significant change
  • have outstanding Accreditation Areas for Improvement
  • require support to develop their Business/Forward Plans

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