Monitoring and Evaluating Progress

Monitoring and Evaluation is about asking questions, gathering evidence, analysing it and then being prepared to act on the results.

Having systems in place that will enable your group to monitor and evaluate its progress, are crucial to effective management. It is inevitable that your plans (either an overall business plan or a specific project plan) may need to be modified as you go along.  Checking and assessing whether things are working as you had planned will also enable you to  identify what works (and what does not) for the future.  


Monitoring is required to ensure your group is working to plan, it also allows you to review how your business or project plan could be modified to incorporate changes or when you might have arrived at a new stage in development. 

Monitoring needs to be done regularly and at specific times (daily, monthly, quarterly, annually).  It is important that your group collects information in a planned, organised and routine way.  This means collecting information as you go along, about your activities, how they are used, the number of times they are accessed etc and it also means taking into account factors which affect your organisation or project from outside.

By monitoring progress you remain in control of the project and will be able to:-

  • compare progress to the specific measures or outputs you identified before starting and determine how well you are doing
  • report back to funders and supporters of the project in a meaningful way providing key information  
  • chart the impact of any modifications you have made to your original proposal, looking at the difference you are making
  • improve your knowledge of the impact of your project


Evaluation should be a practical process that helps you plan, reflect, learn and improve:-

  • how do you know what you are doing is working
  • what could make it better
  • what difference does your project make
  • what is being achieved by your project and how
  • what needs to be changed and how
  • what do people think about you

Monitoring and Evaluation will enable your group to review your:-

  • mission statement  - every two to three years
  • strategic aims - annually
  • objectives - every six months
  • accounts and balance sheet - annually
  • income and expenditure - monthly 

Other Community Toolkit Topics to look at:

Further sources of information

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Last Updated 05/02/2013 11:09