How to calculate the return on investment your activities deliver

The Cost Benefit Analysis model is used extensively by voluntary and community sector partners, as well as public and private sectors. The methodology can be applied to a wide range of activities relevant to community farms and gardens, including: employment and skills initiatives; health and social care and education.

The model helps demonstrate the value for money offered by different interventions which can be helpful for funding applications and referrals.


The aim of this guide is to provide an overview of how to use the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA) Excel tool to calculate the return on investment (ROI) your activities delivered for your local partners and the local community.

The guide is intended for senior management within an organisation. Calculating return on investment requires access to a range of datasets and engagement with other organisations.

The outputs from a CBA/ROI are often used by senior management to engage funders and statutory bodies.