Recommendations should be anchored in the conclusions of an evaluation report, with proper cross-referencing. Recommendations are actionable proposals on how to resolve concrete problems affecting the project or the sustainability of its results. They should be feasible to implement within the time-frame and resources available (including local capacities), specific in terms of who would do what and when, and set a measurable performance target. In some cases, it might be useful to propose options, and briefly analyse the pros and cons of each option.
Recommendations should be SMART - Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Result-oriented and Time-bound. Recommendations should pay due regard to Human Rights and Gender Equality aspects.
Within two weeks from receiving the final Evaluation Report, the Evaluation Office converts the evaluation recommendations into a draft Recommendation Implementation Plan and forwards it to the Project Manager for completion. For each recommendation, the implementation plan should specify the following information:
- How the recommendation will be implemented;
- Who is responsible for its implementation;
- Expected completion date and;
- What actions have already been taken (if any).
In cases where a recommendation is found not to be feasible, has been overtaken by events or is contested, an explanation must be provided as to why the recommendation cannot be implemented, and where appropriate, an alternative course of action should be specified.
The Evaluation Office uses a compliance procedure to track the progress of recommendation implementation compliance at six month intervals for a maximum period of 18 months. The Evaluation Office makes biannual compliance status reports to the Deputy Executive Director and these are routinely discussed with Division Directors and Senior Management Team. Aggregate compliance data are included in the biennial Evaluation Synthesis Report.
Compliance status of recommendations at the close of the 2016-17 biennium
After a maximum of 18 months, the recommendation is automatically 'closed' and the compliance status at that time is permanently recorded as follows:
- Fully implemented (compliant);
- Partially implemented (partially compliant);
- Not implemented (not compliant) and;
- No further action required (if events overtake what is planned).
Recommendations are kept ‘open’ until they are deemed to be ‘compliant’ or until three assessment points have been completed (whichever the sooner) at which point they are formally ‘closed’ and the recommendation implementation status (‘compliant’, ‘partially compliant’ or ‘not compliant’) will be permanently recorded with no further changes to the status allowed.
The total number of recommendations issued has increased over the years, due to the higher number of evaluations being completed per annum. In addition, the proportion of recommendations that are closed as either ‘not compliant’ or ‘partially compliant’ have steadily declined over the period.