Effects of technology on the performance of monitoring and evaluation system in projects undertaken by non-governmental organizations’ projects in Ghana

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The demands for greater accountability and real results have increased, there is an attendant need for enhanced results-based monitoring and evaluation (M&E) of policies, programs, and projects. A functional M&E systems as a results-based management tools involves careful collection of realistic proof to determine the degree to which expected outcomes are achieved. In gathering this M&E data, most of the developing countries and local NGOs still largely depend on paper-based data collection and reporting of information, an approach with inherent problems related to poor infrastructure, timeliness, quality and accurate data flow. These challenge affect the effective performance of M&E system which rely on quality data. This study seek to assess the effects of technology on the performance of M&E system in Non-Governmental Organization in Ghana. The study adopted quantitative research approach to collect data for better understanding of M&E system, how technology affect data collection and quality and M&E system challenges in the NGOs. A structured questionnaire was employed to capture data from 53 sampled NGOs in the Northern region. A response rate of 96 percent was recorded. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistical method, frequency and percentages, mean score ranking and Relative Importance Index raking (RII) and presented in tables. The study revealed that, management of local NGOs have seen the need for effective M&E system in measuring performance and impacts of interventions and have therefore set up M&E systems in their organizations. The use of technological tools had positive effects on the performance of M&E system through its effect on data collection and quality. The greatest effect was on timeliness and integrity of data that influence management decision making and impact evaluation even though there were some challenges that face M&E system and the use of technology like limited network and security risk among others. The study concludes that, the use of technology in M&E data collection, analysis and quality have a positiveiv relationship M&E system and therefore need to be integrated in all stages of project life cycle. The study therefore recommend that, Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) should be developed and enforce to ensure proper integration of technology into M&E system as M&E system is integrated in all stages of project life cycle. Also, modern technology for M&E data analysis and storage like online databases (servers, dropbox, clouds etc.) should be integrated in organizational M&E system. Human, financial and material resource allocation with the support of SOPs would help address the challenges of M&E system.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Construction Technology and Management, College of Art and Built Environment in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the Degree of Master of Science
Technology, Monitoring and evaluation, Data quality and non-governmental organization, Performance of monitoring and evaluation system