How well are we helping others?
This question is at the essence of our aid & development work. And to answer it, we must rely on information and feed-back.
There are hundreds of books and WEB sites on Monitoring & Evaluation but few provide a practical path to creating an efficient information and feedback system.
The costs of and time for establishing monitoring systems can be staggering! As a rule of thumb, they are being estimated at about 4% of a project’s budget!
I pretend that monitoring and evaluation can be done in a cost-effective way if... we remember a few essential ‘golden rules’.
- Think of your Monitoring & Information system as ‘Democracy at Work’.
- “Let the ‘People Speak’ for Themselves!”
- Keep your intended audiences (project stakeholders) in mind at all times.
- Provide a variety of regular, easy to use and specially targeted feedback reports.
- Use commonly agreed indicators to measure success and impact.
- Make data collection user-friendly.
- Decentralize information gathering to the village or end-user level.
- Involve all participants (financers & end-users of the results) in the project’s planning and impact assessment processes.
- Make the information in your system Trustworthy and Credible.
- Present information that is simple to understand, transparent and convincing.
- Collect data that is both comprehensive and easy to gather & verify.
- Slim down data banks of ‘fields’ and ‘indicators’ that regularly are left blank.
- Regular reporting should be short and to the point.
My eBook can help you keep these ‘golden rules’ in mind. Download my e-book: management Information Systems - Monitoring and Evaluation Feedback Methods
Some more Tools
Here are some tips for a more effective and participatory information gathering. Download these notes: