Once you have created and agreed upon your outcome maps and you have defined pathways, the next step in your outcome evaluation journey is to think about how success will be assessed and begin to collate sources of evidence against success criteria. This article provides guidance on creating robust success criteria.
Success criteria should include a description of what we want to know is happening, how we will know this is happening and the analysis and ambitions of successful criteria. Below is an example where the aim is to engage practitioners with the programme:
Success criteria should also be tied to the project's risk and assumptions, ensuring that they have been reflected upon when assessing success. For example, the above success criteria could be tied to a risk of non-engagement.
Below are further guidelines for ensuring your success criteria is robust:
- Clearly state what you want to find out
- Show how you will know (number/description/self-report etc)
- Refer to your analysis process
- Reflect the ambition of your activity
- Pull on key risks and assumptions
- Make it easily collectable (you already have the source or can easily create it)
Tip: to have a 'good enough' assessment, focus firstly on having one or more success criteria for each stepping stone that will give you confidence in your data. Make sure the criteria is appropriate to the ambitions and environment of your activities.
For more information on evidence standards, click here.