Analysis really matters....ALOT!!If you are a Monitoring and Evaluation Officer working for a prestigeous organization out there you have to ask yourself these important questions...1) Are the Monitoring and Evaluation Findings making sense? 2) Are the Monitoring and Evaluation Findings answering the various questions which stakeholders really want to hear and 3) Are the Monitoring and Evaluation brining out the information in a constructive way? You see when you go out there to monitor activities, inputs or outputs all you are collecting is data. Data in its raw form doesn't really make sense but when you carry out a constructive analysis can you begin to bring out the information that people really want to see. Lets begin the Monitoring and Evaluation process shall we?
Definition of Data Analysis and Measuring ChangeAnalysis is basically the process of simplifying the data that you collected in the field into a form that people can really understand. There are many ways to perform an analysis but one way which most researchers including Monitoring and Evaluation specialists want to keep an eye on is computer software's partically designed for statistics. There are statistical packages like SPSS or STATA, however even Excel can do a very good job in bringing out the information to the audience you are communicating your Monitoring and Evaluation findings to. Analysis of qualitative data in Monitoring and Evaluation involves detailed descriptions in response to open ended questions and observations from the target group. While at the same time, analysis of quantitative data is basically similar bur can be done using simple statistics like averages, percentages, forecasts and so on and so forth.
When it comes to measuring change in Monitoring and Evaluation, you want use analysis to the best way possible. Some of the notable points you should be sure to include in communicating your Monitoring and Evaluations findings and consequently communicating the change of the programme are the following namely;
- A general statistical description of your target group
- A general statistical analysis of the progress made in the different indicators. When communicating the progress in the various indicators try to show how progress has been achieved over the years or quarters of the implementation. You can make good use of percentage increases or decreases compared to the baseline value.
- Graphical representation of the trends in results over the years since the beginning of the implementation of the programme.
Monitoring and Evaluation Fora'sIn Monitoring and Evaluation Foras you can make good use to communicate your findings to the various audeinces you have invited who are usually the stakeholders.Now how do you structure your presentation so that when your begin presenting your Monitoring and Evaluation findings it actually ROCKS!!!
1) Start by Presenting the Monitoring and Evaluation findings that you got from the field
2) Afterwards make a Presentation of your personal Monitoring and Evaluation experiences in the field
3) Afterwards make a Presentation of your feelings as to whether any progress has been made and if not why?
4) Finally, offer recommendations to the audiences as to how best the programme implementation can be improved.
Be sure to always welcome the audience to provide their input on the presentation and findings collected. You can make this happen, all you have to do is try. Take Monitoring and Evaluation to a whole different level!