Differentiating between Project Cycle Management (PCM) and Results Based Management (RBM) is quite important because of the current uptake of the last. It is our perception that although RBM is in full congruence with the PCM (and LFA) concepts, tools and techniques, it is even more emphasizing on the monitoring the quality aspect of service delivery.
RBM particularly focuses on reporting and corrective action established by assessing Actual Results versus Planned Results. A regular and institutionalized Monitoring and Evaluation system will need to gather information about achievement of Results at any level in the Logical Framework Matrix (Outputs, Ourcomes, Purpose & Overall Objectives). This relationship is referred to as the Results Chain.
Interestingly though the approach does ignore or at least does not mention the monitoring of ASSUMPTIONS or RISKS which in our perception may even be more important to monitor then the Intervention Logic (Risk Management). RBM further interlinks this M&E system with regular Feedback and Adjustment system, something not well developed in the PCM approach. In fact, PCM emphasizes to enhance programming and proposal design, while RBM seems to focus on institutional accountability, effectiveness and efficacy.
These approaches seem to be strongly complementary to each other.
As a result RBM introduces the internal work planning as a management tool to facilitate the sustainability of the Results Based Management system in the organization. This tool resembles the SUPPORT matrix as developed by us, aiming at strengthening the own organization.
RBM is a comprehensive management approach introduced by the UN institutions and has been adopted by several bi-lateral organizations including the European Commission. Introducing a results-oriented approach … aims at improving management effectiveness and accountability by defining realistic expected results, monitoring progress toward the achievement of expected results, integrating lessons learned into management decisions and reporting on performance.
Results Based Management provides a coherent framework for strategic planning and management based on learning and accountability in a decentralized environment. It appears first to be a management system and second, a performance reporting system.
The question however is how administrators (and financial control) will make the mental shift from thinking, following , talking about ‘activities’ towards ‘results’? Is anyone having experience with introducing this shift in paradigm?
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