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PROJECTS-ON-TRACK DATA PROCESSING at Save the Children United Kingdom

Save the Children is the leading independent organization for children in need, with programs in over 120 countries. We save children’s lives. We fight for their rights. We help them fulfil their potential. Save the Children is working in Nigeria because one in five children in Nigeria dies before their fifth birthday. About 40% of children miss out on school and have to work to survive while nearly 2 million children have lost one or both parents to an AIDS-related disease.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: PROJECTS-ON-TRACK DATA PROCESSING

Location: London, United Kingdom
Employee Status: Fixed Term Contract / Full Time
Department: MONITORING, EVALUATION, ACCOUNTABILITY AND LEARNING

Projects-on-track
Data Processing

Terms of Reference for Internships, March ‘22

Introduction on Projects-on-track

In a results-driven organization, we aim to use data that enables timely and actionable results-based management. The greatest value-add of using projects-on-track data is in management decision making for results for children. By identifying and highlighting projects that are most off-track against either outputs and/ or outcomes, the data spurs probing, management decision making and actions in line with a learning organization culture.

It provides an actionable view of whether we are doing what we promised (outputs) and whether that is effectively achieving results for children (outcomes). As the metrics are standardised across all projects/ awards, the data can be analysed from multiple perspectives – by country, region, theme, SC member/donor, etc., making it useful for different management levels.

With projects-on-track data, we have information on both implementation progress and effectiveness of our projects that will prompt questioning, learning and adaptive management. Using the projects-on-track indicators routinely in management meetings can support informed decision-making and timely adaptations to projects – be it improving implementation, course corrections, changing targets, or other changes needed.

The two Projects-on-track indicators are

1. Outputs on track: Average % achieved of project planned outputs, and based on agreed thresholds (see below) for a given country or portfolio, the # and % of projects on track to achieve their outputs.
è Measuring achievement of project outputs vs targets, i.e. “are we doing what we said we would do?”

2. Outcomes on track: Average % achieved of project targeted outcomes, and based on agreed thresholds (see below) for a given country or portfolio, the # and % of projects on track for their outcomes.
è Measuring achievement of project outcomes vs targets: i.e. “are we effective, making a difference to children’s lives as expected?”

This allows us to immediately see which projects are on-track or off-track, no matter what the approach or intended results are. More details on the background and Projects-on-track indicators is in annex.

While we will have project indicator monitoring in a management information system called PRIME for countries going live over the course of 2022-2024, there is value in exploring manual data entry for tracking progress and effectiveness of our projects for management decision-making. This Terms of Reference provides ideas on how the manual data entry could be done using the project / donor reports stored in our Awards Management System (AMS).

Data Processing Task Description

MANUAL DATA ENTRY AND ANALYSIS

As many countries don’t yet have their indicator data our new management information system, we have developed a user-friendly data entry form to enter just the topline data needed for Projects-on-track. It is a Power Apps Dynamics 365 form that can adapt to the number of outputs/outcomes in various projects. Using the app, the data processing tasks are as follows:

  • Source project results documentation for projects from Save the Children’s Awards Management System (AMS)
  • Log whether the relevant data (such as targets by time period for outputs and outcomes, and results data for outputs and outcomes) was available for each project. The best data source to use to enter indicator data is the projects’ IPTT (Indicator Performance Tracking Table) and related (narrative) reporting in project and donor reports that have indicator values vs targets
  • Where data was available, log it on the Projects on Track app:
  • Keeping the data fields to a minimum, it includes entering both generic project information fields that are used in the management dashboards to slice the data as well as the data on the actual projects-on-track indicators.
  • These are, specifically, the achievements vs corresponding targets for each of the projects’ output and outcome indicators for the reporting period. This period can be set, and is otherwise defaulting to the day of the data entry.
  • The field Indicator name/label is optional as it could be useful to check the data later, but it is not used in the analysis.
  • Support the compilation of a final report covering (a) findings from the Projects on Track data and (b) learning around the availability or otherwise and quality of data

SCOPE AND DELIVERABLES

For any given project, output and/or outcome indicator achieved vs target data would need to be entered using the app as specified above. Because countries are also voluntarily entering live project data, the workflow will also include checking in analytics which projects are already being monitored using the Projects-on-track toolkit by countries.

In terms of scope, for our global organization to be able to use analytics based on Projects-on-track data, we would aim to manually input the data for our ~500 largest projects by financial value[1].

LENGTH OF ASSIGNMENT

Based on the above and adding some spare time to engage on analysis, this assignment would take around 4 months for one person. However, both because of timing and to support one another and cross-learning, 2 months for 2 interns to work in parallel, tentatively from mid-June to mid-August ‘22.

LIMITATIONS: OUTPUT AND OUTCOME DATA AVAILABILITY AND QUALITY

It is worth noting that we have anecdotal evidence that there is a lack of monitoring of outputs/outcomes vs targets data in some projects at the moment, which would prevent reporting on whether those projects are on track. While we are further emphasizing the importance of results monitoring, this exercise will also provide valuable data on how big the lack of output/outcome data is and will support identifying gaps in our current project monitoring data reporting (e.g. by finding out if it is due to things like (1) many reports being quarterly having only output process reporting, (2) outcomes reported but more on qualitative statements, (3) outcomes reported but without clear target for the period, (4) lack of SMART indicators in project logframes, etc.). This will inform improvements and future guidance.

 

QUALIFICATIONS AND SKILLS REQUIRED

  • Commitment to the mission, vision and values of Save the Children
  • Data quick entering and processing skills
  • High attention to detail
  • Ability to effectively manage a high volume of qualitative and quantitative data and information
  • Highly organized and strong task management
  • Can-do attitude and problem solving skills
  • Flexible approach and able to deal with ambiguity
  • Proficient in Excel
  • Data analysis skills
  • Knowledge of Power Apps or Power BI is a plus
  • A second language like French, Spanish or Arabic would be useful
  • Creativity to develop and encourage innovative solutions is a bonus

Application Closing Date
15th May, 2022.

How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply online

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