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Introduction

During expenditure reviews, and as a normal business process, agencies are expected to demonstrate efficient management and effective intervention. In practice, this means reporting the delivery and outcomes of major interventions to external stakeholders.

Measurement informs ministers, boards and managers, and protects consumers. Graphs and tables in this paper show how Crown agencies reported on performance.

Major interventions 'well managed and working well'.

Major interventions warrant careful design, delivery, analysis, and monitoring. Results are assessed first and foremost to inform leaders and drive decisions. Under the Public Finance Act and other legislation, major results must be reported externally.

Focussing on results helps leaders to look critically at major elements of baseline spending, protect interventions that work, and change or exit poor interventions sooner. Every major intervention embodies a theory that activity and spending breeds results. Monitoring shows whether results occurred as predicted, and when change is needed.

“Evidence trumps opinion every time”

Objective measures help Ministers affirm or reshape major interventions and budgets. This paper outlines a ‘logic’ approach to demonstrating performance from interventions, and clarifying the value of baseline spending. In applying this approach, you should:

  • Start by looking at 1-3 interventions that dominate the budget, strategy and SoI.
  • Over time, apply and adapt the framework to manage all major interventions.
  • Show major interventions are relevant, economical and effective (or change them).
  • Show relevance by establishing ongoing need or opportunity, establish the gains expected from major outputs, and measure those gains.
  • Do not assess everything. Focus on 3-5 major results, and reducing uncertainty.
  • Build management systems to inform decision making, particularly where limited information is now available to demonstrate performance and improvement is feasible.

Leaders ensure concise, summary reports get delivered as decisions get made.

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