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Preparing a draft capacity development plan

The development of a clear and practical plan, with a timeline, measurable indicators and a realistic budget, to address capacity needs identified through the assessment.

The capacity assessment report provides the basis for defining the draft plan. The plan should set out the capacity objectives, activities, and indicators; and the resources required to implement change and to measure progress.

UNDP's offer

UNDP provides templates for a wide variety of capacity development plans for CSOs, National AIDS Councils, for ministries of health and for programmes targeting specific key populations working in HIV.


1. Identify interventions

Describe the activities in detail, noting the capacity strengths and the weaknesses which have led to the proposed activity.

2. Define capacity development indicators

Each capacity development activity should have a clear indicator to measure progress. Indicators should be relevant and feasible to measure.

3. Outline capacity development objectives

The plan should outline the overall objectives of a groups of activities. For example, developing financial policies and procedures, followed by training staff in these procedures all contributes to strengthening Financial Management and reducing risk. Similarly investing in renovating storage facilities at health clinics and designing and implementing an electronic Logistics Management System both contribute to an improved supply of health products and reducing wastage.

4. Develop an estimated budget

Once the activities are agreed, the budget should be developed using standard costing.

Key Considerations

The following points should be considered when completing the capacity development plan.

Defining appropriate indicators

Defining indicators to measure changes in capacity is difficult, but they are key to measuring success. The number of indicators should be as few as possible, easily measurable, SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound), and should consider both qualitative and quantitative progress where possible.

Identifying short-term objectives

To build confidence, experience, and demonstrate results and value, it is important to schedule and plan for some short-term objectives in the capacity development plan (typically within one year). These objectives can help to guide follow-on interventions.

Additionally, aim to set long-term objectives

Capacity Development is a process of change, often involving multiple activities. There is a need for capacity development to be more explicitly woven into national programme management processes. In the long-term clear objectives and milestones should be embedded into national health programmes.

Coordinating with existing strategies and plans

Capacity development plans should not stand alone but should be integrated with existing national strategies and plans.

Key resources

Preparing a draft plan

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