Difference Between Monitoring &Evaluation and Project Management

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There is a big difference between Project Management and Monitoring & Evaluation.

Monitoring and evaluation. Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) is a process that helps improve performance and achieve results. Its goal is to improve current and future management of outputs, outcomes and impact.

Project management is the discipline of initiating, planning, executing, controlling, and closing the work of a team to achieve specific goals and meet specific success criteria.

From the two definitions, you will notice that project management professionals must be available when the project starts until completion. Monitoring and Evaluation on the other hand can happen the project has just started.

Project management is applicable in all areas of economy while Monitoring & Evaluation is applicable in limited areas, mostly in hospitals, NGOs, health sector and areas where statistics is involved.

Any professional can pursue Project Management –it’s relevant in any field.M&E is only limited to statisticians, health professionals, mathematicians, GIS specialists and people with mathematics and technical skills.

M&E is a tough course, tougher than Project Management, which is why professionals in the fields of PR, Marketing and other easy courses are advised against studying the course.

But before we continue, you should be aware that monitoring & Evaluation is a combination of two words. The difference between the two words is as explained below.

SUMMARY OF DIFFERENCES BETWEEN MONITORING AND EVALUATION

  Monitoring Evaluation
     
Timing Continuous throughout the project Periodic review at significant point in
    project progress – end of project, mid
    point of project, change of phase
     
Scope Day to day activities, outputs, indicators Assess overall delivery of outputs and
  of progress and change progress towards objectives and goal
     
Main Project staff, project users External evaluators / facilitators, project
participants   users, project staff, donors
     
Process Regular meetings, interviews, monthly, Extraordinary meetings, additional data
  quarterly reviews, etc. collection exercises etc.
     
Written outputs Regular reports and updates to project Written report with recommendations for
  users, management and donors changes to project – presented in
    workshops to different stakeholders
     

 

DIFFERENT LEVELS FOR MONITORING AND EVALUATION (Fowler 1997, 164)

Point of measurement What is measured Indicators
Outputs Effort Implementation of activities
Outcomes Effectiveness Use of outputs and sustained
    production of benefits
Impact Change Difference from the original problem
    situation

 

 

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