Our M&E Services
Manto Management offers a basket of Monitoring and Evaluation services. The services range from conducting an M&E audit, designing a Monitoring and Evaluation system, implementation of the M&E system and providing technical support. Departments can select one of the services from the basket or all of the services depending on the individual requirements of your department or organisation.
Throughout the implementation of any of the services we will conduct a phased Project Management approach, Change Management and skills transfer. The M&E audit focuses on the analysis of the current situation within the department. A review of best practice in the context that it represents a proven and tested method or application that has resulted in significant improvements in performance, and, may be applied across a wide spectrum of similar organisations.
The M&E system design involves the development of an M&E framework. Refinement of the indicator schedule and the development of an M&E policy guideline based on the findings with regard to the current status, the benchmarking exercise and the input from strategic stakeholders. Monitoring and Evaluation forms an integral part of any programme and project delivery initiative. In order for M&E to add value to the delivery process, it must be carried out parallel to the service delivery value chain and it must have the power to influence the delivery process at key points. This will ensure that new knowledge and information is fed back into the delivery process in order for learning to take place. This creates an environment of continuous improvement and speedy delivery.
The implementation of the Monitoring and Evaluation system is the piloting and implementation of the previously designed M&E system in the organisation. The M&E system is piloted in a safe environment that does not have any negative impact on the organisation.
Training as a separate service is concerned with the development of training material, skills transfer and Capacity Building of members in the M&E unit. Although training and support is a separate service provided, Manto Management will also ensure that skills transfer, support and handover takes place during and at the end of each of the different service offerings.
Monitoring & Evaluation Audit
The M&E audit is conducted to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the department in terms of Monitoring and Evaluation. The audit gives a clear understanding of the current situation and where Monitoring and Evaluation gaps can be identified. The audit is done in a phased approach, reviewing departmental documents and identifying the compliance reporting of the department. This is also done through stakeholder consultation and benchmarking.
The current M&E unit will be reviewed and job descriptions in your department will be compared to what is happening in similar international organisations and in other government departments. A report of the findings will illustrate the gaps in the department as well as recommendations of what can be done in terms of improving monitoring and evaluation.
M&E System Design
M&E system design consists of different elements in the design process. The M&E design process consist of stakeholder consultation, and review of what the department has in place in terms of Monitoring and Evaluation. The M&E framework provides a breakdown of how the M&E processes create and add value in the context of planning, delivery, reporting and decision-making.
There are specific drivers that provide the impetus for Monitoring and Evaluation. The planning process sets the basis on which the actual M&E takes place. Based on the planning requirements, it is envisaged that the capabilities of the department have to be adjusted in order to allow for an effective and efficient implementation of the plan. The operational side of the framework involves the actual Monitoring and Evaluation, which are used as a basis for the generation of reports. This is essentially how learning and accountability occur across the M&E value chain. Information that is generated through this process is then also utilised to evaluate the overall process, as well as, inform Strategic Planning processes and decision- making within the department or organisation.
Planning within government departments is usually driven by compliance demands, especially those set by National Treasury, which translates into reporting for outputs (essentially qualitative). However, the focus on outcomes and impacts is present through studies conducted. Although, it is not consistently implemented and this occurs outside a framework of norms and standards, that can be compared over time and region.
M&E planning involves the setting of parameters within which M&E needs to take place over a particular period of time. This involves the formulation of measures or Key Performance Indicators that will be used in Monitoring and Evaluating. This will also include the development of an indicator schedule that will include:
The definition of the indicators including its purpose and level (nature) i.e. input, process, output, outcome or impact indicator.
The definition of data that needs to be collected in order to determine level of performance or achievement.
The development of a data plan i.e. the frequency for data collection, data analysis, data management and reporting thereof.
The capabilities of the system are determined by a number of prevalent factors, which are predominantly termed the drivers of Operations and Change. This involves a deliberate focus on the institution’s internal business processes and mechanisms, which enable it to deliver against the M&E plan. It is a considered opinion that these enabling factors are revised based on the M&E plan that has been developed in order to ensure that value is created.
Structures: This essentially looks at the different stakeholders that are involved in any particular delivery or M&E process i.e. who does what?
Processes: This outlines the processes that the institution has to engage in to ensure that value is created in relation to M&E i.e. what must be done and how should this be done?
Systems & Tools: These are essentially the mechanisms that can be utilised in order to deliver on key requirements as per the M&E plan i.e. what tools, instruments & mechanisms do we use to get the envisaged results?
Culture: The organisational culture is a key determinant of the manner in which people within the organisation engage with the M&E system in general i.e. what is the requisite organisational character that reflects how things are done around here formally and informally?
Resources & Skills: This aspect considers the resource and skills requirements of the institution in order to deliver on key requirements of the M&E plan i.e. do we have the right skills and all the necessary resources to get the right results at the right time?
The purpose of establishing an effective Monitoring and Evaluation system is to ensure that there is accountability for resources spent and to ensure that learning occurs within the organisation. An effective M&E system will be able to generate key lessons that have been learnt based on studies that are conducted in relation to the monitoring, evaluation and impact assessment requirements.
These factors can be used to report on key achievements as well as to determine improvement requirements for the system and for the delivery processes. The reporting and feedback processes should allow the department to determine:
Whether targets set in relation to delivery are being met.
Accountability: to the people engaged in the intervention through to funders.
Progress: impact on the priority issues.
Improvement: information for strategic and fine-tuning programme decisions.
Motivation: a sense of achievement is crucial for all involved.
Credibility: enhance the acknowledged credibility of the work.
Training: M&E Capacity Building
One of the critical components of the development and implementation process is building of internal capacity to design and implement the system. Training material will cover aspects such as definition of Monitoring and Evaluation, difference between Monitoring and Evaluation, translating strategy and policy into a measurement framework, how to conduct monitoring and evaluation accurately and effective reporting.
The Capacity Building process will involve formal and structured working sessions as well as skills transfer as and when individual needs are identified. This will also involve the documenting of the detailed project process and approach utilised in implementation in order to ensure that the knowledge stays with the department.
The skills transfer process will be conducted over the period of the project. The skills transfer will coincide with a coaching (handholding) over this period. As the skills levels increase, the contact sessions will decrease. Skills transfer will be aimed at developing members of the unit to take ownership of the system.