Social sector programs are expected to deliver results in complex and challenging environments. They need to orchestrate work among a large number of stakeholders, fine tune their strategies in line with changing circumstances, collect high quality data, and constantly learn to improve results.
The TCS Aid360TM Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) software module streamlines this vital part of the project lifecycle.
The Planning and M&E modules help in results-based planning of programs, capturing field level program progress by utilizing multi-channels. Dashboards and reports are generated for program management and disclosures.
Planning: Program creation involves stakeholder profiling and program contouring along theme, geography, and global standards such as SDGs. Guided program planning takes place using log frames, including creation of a fully-linked results chain, work breakdown structures, modelling risks and assumptions, budgeting, and attribution of budgets to funding sources and results. Hierarchies can be created to link related programs with pre-defined rules for aggregation. Access rights help establish clarity on ownership and accountability within and across programs.
This planning process is highly intuitive and can be done easily by program teams without any external help. Even though there are in-built workflows for plan review and approval, program plans can be extracted into Excel to enable offline planning or consultation with other stakeholders.
M&E: Aid360 allows users to report progress on costs, activities, and indicators. Users can also upload supporting evidence and qualitative descriptions through a workflow for independent verification.
Multi-channel progress updates can be recorded on the mobile app or web browser with role-based access. An Excel template can also be downloaded to enable offline update of progress in areas with no connectivity.
Real-time dashboards, charts, and reports can show program performance for management purposes or disclosures at click of a button. They also enable causal drill downs on program performance, benchmarking of relative efficiency and effectiveness, budget compliance, indicator trend analysis, and various pre-defined reports.
Product administration: The solution includes a library of industry standard and custom indicators. It also incorporates a results dimension manager, hierarchy maps, and nomenclature definer. It allows message and alerts configuration, with user account and access management.
The Planning and M&E modules of TCS Aid360TM offer the following benefits:
- Planning for results: Log frame or results based management (RBM) plans, coupled with hierarchies, allow planners to design effective strategies and set realistic goals.
- Single version of the truth: Cloud-hosted plans enable stakeholders to collaborate and be updated on recent changes, with clear visibility of their role and responsibility.
- Improved data quality: Reliable field data is substantiated with evidence collected through multiple channels (mobile, web, and offline) and aggregated seamlessly up the hierarchy.
- Improved decision making and learning: Organizations can understand what works better through aggregation of indicators, drill downs, and analysis of qualitative inputs from the field.
The TCS Advantage
TCS Aid360TM ensures that the planning and M&E process keeps the focus on results throughout the project lifecycle. It incorporates the best practices of results-based management (logical framework or theory of change) philosophy. As a consequence, it allows program teams to understand not only the expenditure incurred but also the results achieved for each unit of cost.