Evaluation planning checklist - detailed version

Planning is a crucial part of the evaluation process. The following checklist has been designed to help with the process of carefully planning your evaluation, outlining the key steps going forward.

Identify Questions to ask
Study type 1. Is this an evaluation or research?
Evaluation Governance
2. Who will take responsibility for getting the evaluation off the ground and oversee its delivery?
3. Who will write the evaluation plan, identify the required resources and engage stakeholders?
4. Do you need an advisory or steering group?
Evaluation resources
5. What resources are available to support this evaluation? What resources do you think you might need for people and equipment? How much might it cost? Who might fund the evaluation?
6. What level or type of evaluation do you need?
Support for the evaluation: All Stakeholders 7. Who are your key stakeholders?
8. Who needs to be informed and kept informed? How often?
9. Who do you need to involve in the evaluation planning, delivery?
10. Who will want to know the evaluation findings?
11. Who has skills, experience and expertise to support you with your evaluation? i.e. Patient and public involvement, equalities, communications and engagement, evaluation leads in your own or partner organisations
Support for the evaluation: Service User Involvement
12. How will you involve users of the service or innovation, patients, carers and the public in your evaluation? Consider this in terms of the design, delivery (data collection) and dissemination (communicating your findings).
Context: Evidence Base
13. What is the evidence base for the new service, service change, innovation, pilot?
14. How have similar services been evaluated in the past?
Context: Understanding the Service
15. Is it clear who the new service or innovation is for? (population group, needs and characteristics)
16. Is it clear what the desired intermediate and long term outcomes are and how the activities of the service or innovation will lead to these?
Scope of the evaluation
17. Have you agreed with your stakeholders the purpose of the evaluation? There may be more than one.
18. Are you clear what the evaluation will focus on?
19. Is it clear why you are conducting an evaluation?
Aims and Objectives of the evaluation
20. Have you engaged your stakeholders to help you identify your evaluations aims (why you are doing this evaluation) and objectives (what you are trying to achieve)?
21. Are your aims and objectives SMART?
Evaluation approach
22. What evaluation approach or method are you planning to take? Eg: quantitate, qualitative, formative, summative?
23. Do you need to commission an external evaluation or will an in-house one meet your needs?
Data requirements
24. What information and data do you already have available to support your evaluation?
25. What additional data collection do you need to undertake to be able to answer the aims and objectives of your evaluation?
Data Collection, Analysis and Reporting
26. Will your data collection tools work? Are there any validated tools that can help? Who will collect the data?
27. How will you analyse the data?
28. How and who will write up the findings?
29. Have you identified any training needs to support these activities?
Timescales, responsibilities and resources 30. What are the timescales for the evaluation the data collection, the data analysis and writing the final report?
31. Who will be responsible for each of these?
32. Do you need any additional resources or funding for any of these?
Information Governance
33. Have you reviewed your organisational policies on Information Governance including data protection, storage and use to ensure that your evaluation plan complies or sought advice from your information governance lead?
34. Have you sought relevant permissions to undertake the evaluation? Who will give this?
Ethical implications
35. Have you considered the impact of your evaluation on the participants and the service?
36. Have you put adequate safeguards in place to protect the participants in your study, including gaining consent and feeding back findings?
Recommendations and action planning
37. Once you have your evaluation findings, have you agreed your recommendations and how you are going to implement them?
38. Have you developed your action plan?
Sharing the findings
39. How are you going to share the findings from your evaluation with your stakeholders?
40. Have you developed a communication plan to share your findings and recommendations?
Are you still doing an evaluation?
41. Once you have planned your evaluation, check whether you are doing an evaluation or research to ensure that you have the appropriate permissions and approvals for starting the work.

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