Commitment 4.3:
We invest in quality assessment of our work.

Compliance Indicators

Compliance with the Commitments will be assessed against the following Compliance Indicators. All of the applicable Compliance Indicators must be met by every ACFID Member to be considered compliant with the Code. Each of the Compliance Indicators has one or more compliance Verifiers. Verifiers are the description of evidence that is required to substantiate compliance with each Compliance Indicator. Guidance is also provided.

4.3.1 Members assess the quality of their strategies, designs and plans.

Appraisal/selection process that requires designs and plans to be critically assessed against a set of criteria or equivalent. 

Guidance

Using a documented appraisal/selection process with clear criteria or principles increases the shared understanding amongst staff and partners of the range of expectations your organisation may have in regards to the nature and quality of initiatives and it enhances transparency, accountability and rigour. The process could be undertaken by staff or a committee with external specialists. You can download an example of an initiative appraisal/selection tool in the Resources Section below.

Download and read ACFID’s PMEL Guidance tool from the resources section below for further guidance on developing planning, monitoring, evaluation and learning frameworks and tools that meet this requirement. 

4.3.2 Members monitor, evaluate and learn from their work.

  • Policy, statement or guidance document committing the Member to monitoring, evaluation and learning across the whole organisation.
  • Monitoring and evaluation framework, tools, templates or approaches that consistently show evidence of monitoring and evaluation in practice

Guidance

Your policy, statement or guidance document could include: an outline of the principles underpinning your organisation’s approaches to monitoring, evaluation and learning; and an outline of the procedures or practices required to achieve this.

Your approaches could include: scheduled reporting processes with associated report templates or guidance to enable consistency and rigour; scheduled field visits with associated report templates; guidance on evaluation terms of reference and methodologies to enable consistent approaches, quality and rigour; and scheduled and resourced events to share learnings amongst staff and partners.

Your monitoring and evaluation framework, tools and templates could include: an articulation of expected outputs and outcomes, associated methods for measuring this (indicators, targets or equivalent), how this information will be collected and by whom and these processes should be adequately resourced with time, people and funds.

Download and read ACFID’s PMEL Guidance tool from the resources section below for further guidance on developing planning, monitoring, evaluation and learning frameworks and tools that meet this requirement.

Good Practice Indicators

The following Good Practice Indicators describe a higher standard of practice than that set out in the Compliance Indicators. While Members do not need to meet the Good Practice Indicators to be considered compliant with the Code, they will self-assess against these indicators once every three years. This provides a clear pathway for Members to strengthen and improve practice over time.

  • Specialised monitoring and evaluation staff are in place.
  • External specialists undertake reviews and evaluations using a range of data collection methods and tools. 
  • Monitoring and evaluation training is provided to key personnel, partners and relevant primary stakeholders. 
  • The results of reviews and evaluations  are published on organisation website, and made available through other mediums to partners and primary stakeholders.
  • Monitoring and evaluation systems include the participation and leadership of partners, community members and primary stakeholders.

Good Practice Guidance

Here are some practical suggestions for your organisation to further deepen and improve practice over time.

Organisational

  • Develop operational plans including activity schedules, monitoring and evaluation plans, budgets and risk management plans to guide the implementation of the development activity. These documents ensure shared understanding between you and your partners and provide an objective basis to monitor, measure and report progress.
  • Focus on the impact or long term outcome of an activity – this will encourage the analysis and articulation of how the changes will likely occur and who the main actors or change agents are in this process.
  • Undertake this analysis and planning with the full participation of partners, community members and other important stakeholders
  • Jointly define with your partners and other stakeholders what success or progress will look like and how it will be assessed and measured. This could involve defining indicators and targets or could be done in a more open-ended manner.
  • Establish monitoring and evaluation systems that regularly and systematically include the participation and leadership of partners, community members and other critical stakeholders
  • Use a range of data collection methods and tools, both qualitative and quantitative, for monitoring and evaluation processes
  • Present findings and seek feedback in an accessible and appropriate way to your stakeholders
  • Demonstrate a commitment to mutual accountability through sharing results, good practices and lessons learned with stakeholders
  • Make program review reports available throughout your organisation, to partners and other stakeholders and on your website.
  • Organise events or opportunities for stakeholders and staff to reflect on lessons learned and explicitly incorporate them into forward planning
  • Use data to inform decision-making, to adjust approaches where necessary and to continually improve performance.
  • Through your appraisal processes, link project funding and approval to organisational strategies, priorities and mission.
  • Plan and budget for your monitoring and evaluation at the project design stage.
  • Use the finding of evaluations to inform future programming and provide learning within the organisation as well as feedback and accountability to implementing partners or projects.
  • Appoint staff or use consultants with expertise in monitoring and evaluation methods. 

ACFID Resources

ACFID’s PMEL Guidance Tool

Developing an Effectiveness Framework- A toolkit for small and medium sized NGOs

The purpose of this Toolkit is to provide small and medium sized Australian NGOs with some guiding principles and ...

Planning, Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Guidance Note

This guidance note outlines the key principles that underpin the disciplines of planning, monitoring, evaluation ...

Other Resources

Collecting & using data on disability to inform inclusive development

This Practice Note contributes to a conversation on how data on disability can be collected and used within ...

Communications monitoring, evaluation and learning toolkit

This toolkit provides a framework to think about communications monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL), and ...

Communications Policy – Australian Himalayan Foundation

AHF shares its Communications Policy as an example of their organizational requirements when collecting and using ...

Evaluating Humanitarian Action Guide

The Evaluating Humanitarian Action Guide supports evaluation specialists and non-specialists in every stage of an ...

Feminist Research Framework – IWDA

This Framework sets out IWDA’s approach to feminist research and provides guidance for designing ethical, feminist ...

From evidence to impact

Development contributions of Australian aid funded research - a study of the Australian Development Research ...

Handbook on Planning, Monitoring and Evaluating for Development Results

A Handbook on Planning, Monitoring and Evaluating for Development Results.

How to Partner for Development Research

Recognising that effective partnerships require intentional management, this practical guide offers tools, tips ...

Monitoring and Evaluation Toolkit

How to set up a monitoring and evaluation system in an organisation

Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning: our Collective Conscience

In this blog, Katie Chalk, from World Vision Australia and co-chair of ACFID’s MEL Community of Practice, reflects ...

Principles and Guidelines for Ethical Research and Evaluation in Development

Essential guidance tool for research conducted with human participants in developing country contexts.

Video – Spotlight on the Code: Australian Himalayan Foundation

As part of Spotlight on Quality Principle 4, we speak with Tshering Lama O’Gorman, previous Head of Programs at ...

About

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Annual Report 2022-23

Reporting on ACFID’s activities to ensure transparency and accountability

ACFID

ACFID is the peak body for Australian NGOs involved in international development and humanitarian action.

Our PARTNERSHIPS

ACFID works and engages with a range of strategic partners in addition to our members.

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ACFID is governed by its Board, ACFID Council, and various expert and governance committees.

Members

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Meet our Members

The ACFID membership is comprised of Australian NGOs that actively work in the international aid and development sector.

Become a member

Joining ACFID means joining an experienced and powerful mix of like-minded organisations committed to good international development practice.

Membership types & fees

ACFID has two types of organisational membership: Full Membership and Affiliate Membership.

State of the Sector

The State of the Sector Report provides a comprehensive and robust analysis of the state of the Australian aid and development sector.

NGO Aid Map

ACFID’s NGO Aid Map allows the Australian public and stakeholders to explore the work of ACFID Members around the world.

Development Practice Committee

The DPC is an expert advisory group of development practitioners leading good practice within the sector.

Our Focus

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Federal Budget 23-24 Analysis

Facts and figures on how aid is presented in this year’s annual budget

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ACFID prioritises a robust response to climate change and pressure on civil society in developing countries, as well as other key priorities.

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ACFID Members provide vital life-saving assistance in the immediate aftermath of an emergency.

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Action on climate change is one of ACFID’s highest priorities, as it is an existential threat to humanity and our development.

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Civil societies are a cornerstone of regional stability and ensure that the voices of the marginalised are heard.

Supporting NGOS

Supporting NGOs as Valuable Partners.

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Walking the talk on inclusive development.

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Taking humanitarian action for those in greatest need.

Elevating Development

Elevating Development to the Heart of Australia’s International Engagement.

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Code of Conduct

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2022-23 ACFID Code of Conduct Review

The ACFID Code of Conduct is periodically reviewed to ensure it continues to reflect good practice and the needs of ACFID and its members.

Code of Conduct

The Code is a voluntary, self-regulatory industry code of good practice.

About the Code

Find out more about the Code of Conduct and how it operates.

Good Practice Toolkit

Overview and practical resources, and examples to support the implementation of the Code.

Spotlight on the Code

Provides a thematic ‘deep dive’ into each of the nine Quality Principles in the Code

Compliance

This section outlines the responsibility to be taken by each Member to ensure compliance with the Code.

Complaints Handling

How to make a complaint and information on the Code’s independent mechanism to address concerns relating to an ACFID Members’ conduct.

Other Standards

Mapping the Code with other professional standards and principles in the humanitarian and aid sector in Australia and internationally

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