Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Explaining Programme Goal, Outcomes, Outpus and Inputs

The Programme identification process

During the planning phase you had undergone a series of stakeholder meetings just trying to understand what really are the problems and how can these problems be solved. Ofcourse, all those days of hard work payed off because now you are actually on the verge of formulating your programme or project. As an organization with your various stakeholders within your midst, you should have by now been able to clearly identify your vision for the future and the theory of change. The theory of change basically give you a comprehensive roadmap on how your various goals and solutions will be achieved. Now, when you come up with a programme in a nut shell it should have Goal, Outcomes, Outputs and Inputs. But for a project it basically ends at the output - outcome stage really depending on your organizations priorities or design. However, lets get straight away in defining these various portions of a programme such as the Goal, Objective, Outcomes and Outputs. Remember these things actually help in Monitoring and Evaluation.

Creating the Goals, Outcomes, Outputs and Inputs

When you are in the process of defining the Goals to the inputs it is always important to be sure what the programme is designed to achieve.Lets get just a bit deeper shall we,

1) Goal; The Goal is basically what you would call the impact of your programme. The developmental change that the programme is likely to bring in the long term lets say in 5 years time. Key questions you want to be sure to ask yourself is, what developmental benefit will the target group have after 5 years of implementation?

2) Outcomes; These are basically the change that occurs as a result of the intervention. These are usually results occurring in a time frame from intermediate to mid term. Key questions that must be asked when formulating outcomes for a programme is 'what must the programme deliver in order to achieve the Goals?' All brainstorming should involve the relevent stakeholders including the Monitoring and Evaluation Officer.

3) Outputs; Outputs are the direct tangible products and services that the programme will deliver as a result of the activities. When coming up with the outputs there is need to directly relate the activities to the outputs at all costs.

4) Inputs; These are basically the resources that will spearhead the various activities to be undertaken including Monitoring and Evaluation activities. It is highly recommended that inputs are adequate and are defined clearly in terms of quality and quantity.

Example of Monitoring and Evaluation activities

The Monitoring and Evaluation activities that should always be included in the programme or project are quit plenty but in a nut shell, they need to add value to the programme or project that you are implementing. When you are planning for the right kind of Monitoring and Evaluation activities to be undertaken you will have to clearly attach the adequate amount of resources to them. Lets look at some of the common Monitoring and Evaluation activities that most organizations will include in their programmes.

Monitoring and Evaluation Activities
  • Quarterly/Semi-Annually Data Collection
  • Quarterly/Semi-Annually Analysis
  • Semi-Annual Report Writing
  • Quarterly Backstopping in various areas
  • Quarterly Monitoring of Implementation
  • Development of field office Monitoring and Evaluation System
  • Baseline Survey
  • Mid-Term Evaluation of Programme
  • End of Programme Evaluation
  • Monitoring and Evaluation Trainings
Monitoring and Evaluation Inputs
  • Money to cater for fuel costs
  • Money to cater for staff daily costs in Monitoring and Evaluation in the field
  • Money to cater for salary of Monitoring and Evaluation staff
  • Stationary and computer equipment
  • Money to cater for consultant to conduct the Mid-term and End of Programme Evaluation 
  • Money for Monitoring and Evaluation workshop trainings
Monitoring and Evaluation Outputs 
  • Monitoring and Evaluation reports produced
  • Mid-term and End of Programme Evaluation Report produced
  • Fully operational Monitoring and Evaluation System in place in the field
  • Trained field staff in Monitoring and Evaluation.
This is all for now folks, remember to take Monitoring and Evaluation to a whole different level. Don't be shy.


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