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What Makes a Good Performance Management Plan? A new tool for managers

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Led by Tory M. Taylor, a monitoring and evaluation specialist with MEASURE Evaluation from Tulane University.

The webinar introduced a tool to assist project managers in conducting effective Performance Management Plan (PMP) reviews. The tool provides feedback to implementing partners and is a brief, comprehensive checklist that covers the essential elements of a comprehensive PMP.

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What Makes a Good Performance Management Plan? A new tool for managers

  1. 1. What Makes a GoodPerformance Management Plan? ___ A new tool for project managers
  2. 2. Background In July 2012, OPRH requested technical support for developing a brief PMP guidance document ADS and TIPS guidance is oriented towards country or regional Missions drafting and implementing their own PMPs The new document zeroes in on what makes a “good” PMP, and was primarily designed for managers reviewing project-level plans
  3. 3. Quality is Universal Although the scope and scale of PRH projects can differ substantially, quality standards for performance management generally do not. A good PMP is easy to follow, with:  a clear, comprehensive results framework  indicators reflecting the project’s major objectives  practical, realistic plans for obtaining high-quality data
  4. 4. 1. Is the PMP clear and well-organized? A clear, easy to follow PMP is more likely to be implemented correctly Though no standard format exists, examples abound. Basic templates usually have the same core elements (project description, results framework, indicator table, etc.) Length will vary by size and complexity of project
  5. 5. 2. Are anticipated costs for implementingthe PMP included? Project budgets may fall short if resources for performance management are not defined and communicated upfront Expenditures for PMP development should be budgeted ahead of implementation costs Implementation costs ideally include all costs associated with obtaining, aggregating, checking and reporting data
  6. 6. 3. Does the PMP deal mostly with resultsand indicators, not strategy or operations? A good PMP is centered on the results and indicators themselves. It is not a strategy document. Indicators and indicator benchmarks should be obvious; advantages and weaknesses of indicators should be clear
  7. 7. 4. Is there a results framework showingcausal relationships between outcomes? A results framework should drive the PMP Models the expected relationship between project outputs, outcomes and impacts Shows what the project is trying to accomplish, and how
  8. 8. Sample Results Framework
  9. 9. 5. Are key outputs, outcomes and impactreflected in the results framework? It is a good practice to review the framework and ensure that it reflects results at every level Priority services and/or activities with large relative investments should be a major focus The collection of impact indicators may be dependent on timeline or scope of project
  10. 10. 6. Is the information on data flow andreporting responsibilities complete? Flow of information should be clearly defined, so that everyone involved understands how and by whom results will be collected, aggregated, recorded, and submitted for review
  11. 11. 7. Is there an indicator table, with baselineestimates and targets where relevant? The indicator table is the heart of the PMP Include one or more indicators organized by result, with a short, precise definition Full definitions and additional details can be recorded elsewhere (indicator reference sheets) Baseline estimates and annual or other targets should be included. Target-setting may sometimes require external technical assistance.
  12. 12. 8. Do the indicators seem closely alignedwith project activities and objectives? The best indicators reflect outcomes that are central to a project’s work Majority of indicators should be activity-specific Indicators that are impervious to the changes a project is trying to effect over the reporting period should generally be avoided
  13. 13. 9. Are the indicators clearly andcomprehensively defined? Indicator reference sheets are optional Should include technical details about each indicator, such as source, disaggregation factors, potential limitations, calculation methods, etc. Templates can be modified to meet individual needs Costs are often approximated; detailed estimates may be needed for primary data collection
  14. 14. 10. Is there enough information in the PMPto judge the quality of the indicators? Basic info about source and data collection methods is required Include information that enables the reader to judge the reliability and validity of indicators It’s not enough to choose good indicators – you have to be able to produce good estimates, too
  15. 15. 11. Do the indicators reliably measure what isintended, and is their collection and use feasible? For nearly every type of activity, there are established indicators in common use A good PMP will have an indicator list free from obvious sources of measurement error ADS offers criteria for determining what should be measured and how to ensure high data quality
  16. 16. 12. Is the number of indicators adequate to reflect project results, but still manageable? Too many indicators can overwhelm ability to see the “big picture” Total number should be based on needs and resources of the project A mix of indicators reflecting reach, coverage and the effects of projects is usually ideal
  17. 17. 13. Are indicators sufficiently disaggregatedto meet project information needs? Disaggregation is not the same as defining a population of interest Person-level indicators should often be disaggregated by sex and age Consider if other sub-groups are crucial to assessing your program’s performance: parity, ethnicity, area, facility or provider type
  18. 18. 14. Have opportunities for evaluation beenidentified and developed? PMPs should:  document the reasons for evaluation  note that source of data is project evaluation, not routine monitoring  describe study design, proposed question content, sampling plan and assessment of limitations  plan to collect and report comparable data from other sources if available, to compare with results
  19. 19. Conclusions Standards for PMPs are universally applicable “A good PMP is easy to follow, with a clear, comprehensive results framework, indicators that reflect the project’s major objectives, and practical, realistic plans for obtaining high-quality data” Any size project will benefit from initial investment in developing a strong PMP to help guide management decision-making
  20. 20. Checklist available on the MEASURE Evaluation website:
  21. 21. THANK YOU! _______________MEASURE Evaluation PRH is a MEASURE project funded by the United States Agency for International Development(USAID) through Cooperative Agreement GHA-A-00-08-00003- 00 and is implemented by the Carolina Population Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partnership with Futures Group International, Management Sciences for Health, and Tulane University. Views expressed in thispresentation do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the U.S. Government. MEASURE Evaluation PRH supports improvements in monitoring and evaluation in population, health and nutrition worldwide.