St. Vincent de Paul Society, NSW Australia


An increasingly complex operational environment and changing internal and external environment spurred the St. Vincent de Paul Society to update its 20 year old strategic plan. The new plan needed to provide guidance to manage a decreasing membership base and increasing need for accountability and evidence-based services. The Society needed a strategic plan which was ‘owned’ by its members, volunteers and staff, so stakeholder engagement was critical to determine their aspirations and needs.


In developing the strategic plan, Noetic developed a discussion paper outlining key internal and external challenges. Noetic undertook an extensive stakeholder engagement process to ensure strategies were evidence-based. Widespread consultation included 32 groups, ranging from Society conferences and staff through to external stakeholders such as clients, donors and government. A stakeholder consultation summary and strategic plan briefing paper outlined the research findings. Noetic then worked with key stakeholders to refine the draft strategies and produce a final strategic plan. The plan contained six strategic goals for strengthening the Society’s spirituality, service, internal systems, membership, partnerships and advocacy activities. Noetic also developed a supporting action plan providing the Society with a roadmap to implement the strategic plan. The action plan detailed key tasks to implement the strategic plan, including who would manage each task, the timeframes for completion, critical dependencies and priorities.


The Society’s strategic plan facilitated its ability to provide sustainable and effective support to the community’s most vulnerable people. As the plan was developed after extensive research and stakeholder consultation, it was able to respond to an increasingly complex external environment, while providing a roadmap to achieve the goals as identified by the members, staff and clients of the Society.

The strategic plan is available online and can be accessed here