upReach Year One Case Study



upReach believe in equal access to top jobs, regardless of social background, and aims to improve social mobility in the UK. They run a peer-led employability programme where upReach Associates are supported with online workshops, work placements and mentoring during their time at university.

The Median upReach Graduate salary is £5,500 higher than the media graduate salary for England, and 87% of Associates in upReach’s pilot phase secured top jobs at leading employers after graduating. 

CAN were delighted to invite upReach to join the CAN³ programme to develop an impact-led strategy for growth and enabling them to maximize their impact with the associates they support.

upReachs achievements since joining CAN cubed

What upReach needed support with (first 12 months):

CAN³ provides support in the five key areas that we feel are crucial to developing an impact-led strategy for growth. CAN Invest and upReach agreed that support in year one would focus on:

What upReach were already able to do:

upReach had bold plans for increasing income (and impact) and it was mutually agreed that they did not need support in sales and developing partnerships.

support provided in CAN cubed

Support provided in CAN³

upReach received 15 days of support, to develop the following:

  An Impact Audit, highlighting key areas to develop in CAN³.

 A review of Impact Report, to categorise different types of outcomes and activities.

 A Theory of Change, to help upReach to communicate the change they make to associates, partner employers and society.

A refined impact measurement framework, giving upReach a more robust and systematic approach to collecting impact data.

 A refined risk register incorporating impact risk, indicators and mitigating actions.

 A quality framework, to enable upReach to understand the key ‘active ingredients’ within their activities and to adapt their delivery to increase their impact.

“We've developed massively as an organisation over the last 6-8 months and a large part of that is due to the CAN Invest interventions we've received. We're very much readying for a fast growth stage and to scale our delivery work, increase the quality of our services and to diversify our impact.  CAN³ have added an immense amount of value. The frequent and quality support has allowed us already to grow and track our impact with more rigour. We feel that one of the most valuable things we've gained, is that our senior team now equipped with the tools to embed impact into our strategy for growth.”

Laura Harrisson, Programme Manager

Results after 12 months in CAN³

Results after 12 months in CAN³

Income- £337,100 (21% increase on the previous year).

Impact- 760 associates supported (69% increase on previous year).

Desk- 12 desks (increased from 8 desks in the previous year).


Summary against CAN³ objectives

Deeper impact: the growth of upReach means they are supporting more Associates. The support from CAN³ in understanding their impact better and improving quality of activities will enable upReach to increase the level of impact per associate.

Embedded impact strategy: upReach's senior team have embedded impact within their strategy for growth.

Improved systems to manage impact: upReach now have robust monitoring tools to underpin fast growth.


upReach are scheduled to remain in the CAN³ accelerator for at least a further six months. The mutually agreed plan will include work on the following:

End of first year summary

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How upreach have grown through their first year in bespoke consultancy programme CAN cubed