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
|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|