How do we choose the most suitable M&E tools and approaches based on the initiative purpose, capacity and plans?
Before designing the relevant indicators and tools for a project you will need to review the capacity of the project in the context of the implementation environment. It is important that all M&E efforts are ‘fit for purpose’. The M&E Capacity Checklist can be used to guide the project review process. This is a dipstick assessment to determine the best approach to the next stages and which tools to use. This checklist is not used to determine how ‘good’ or ‘bad’ your project M&E is.
Each of the proposed tools and indicators to follow on this website have been rated based on the level of M&E capacity and the level of commitment/importance of M&E in the context of the project – determined using the checklist.
It is important to note that there is no ‘One-size-fits-all’ M&E approach for your projects. This checklist can be useful to better understand what M&E tools and approach are most suitable for your project.
Project M&E Capacity Categories:
0-2: Project has limited dedicated resources for M&E, minimal to no additional reporting requirements and scope for substantive M&E tools is limited. Basic support to project to be provided and focus on building project M&E capacity and introducing basic tools for data collection, and project will be covered in our organisational reporting processes.
3-5: Project has some level of dedicated M&E capacity (human and financial) and M&E/learning forms part of project approach. Some adaptation and less advanced M&E approaches should be used.
6-10: Project is well resourced in terms of mature/advanced level of M&E (dedicated project budget, prioritised by stakeholders and embedded in project approach). Current approaches must be reviewed. Only introduce new approaches where there are gaps in measurement. Focus support on refining and advancing current M&E practices.
Note: It is important to note that this checklist is meant to help categorise your project to identify the most suitable M&E approach and tools based on the project size, duration, capacity etc. More points does not equal a better project! So, ensure you realistically score your project so that the tools that are recommended are manageable for implementation and fit for purpose.
M&E Capacity Checklist Excel Template
Use this Excel template to assess the M&E capacity of your project / initiative / campaign and to choose the most suitable tools to continue this M&E journey.