Developing a programme transition strategy
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There is a need to consider what the transition options are, what criteria will be used to evaluate the options and to develop a strategy for transition to guide the process.
When considering programme transition it is important that some key questions are considered by the national stakeholders, the donors and UNDP. These include:
- which national entities will take over management of the grants – government or civil society or both working together?
- what is the approval process?
- will all the functions transition?
- if not, which functions will transition and when?
- will the full programme transition or will the new grant manager take over activities in a gradual process?
Evaluating programme transition options
The criteria could include:
- legal context and requirements
- status of relevant national policies to support implementation, including social contracting
- capacity to reach beneficiaries and ensure continuity of care
- implementation models to address specific needs of key populations
- status and capabilities of NGOs to work effectively with and deliver services to key populations
- ensuring the sustainability of national responses
Developing a programme transition strategy
The programme transition strategy could include information on:
- the transition options selected together with the rationale for the decisions made
- an action plan for the transition process
- how the transition process will be monitored to deal with any bottlenecks and evaluated to assess if transition can take place
- support and technical assistance required during transition, together with the role of partners
The main elements of the programme transition strategy
The transition strategy should include information about key activities that will need to take place along with information on the timeline for the whole process. The timing of the transition will vary country by country. The new grant manager may be in a position to take over programme management and health information management relatively quickly. A longer period may be required for the handover of the procurement of health products including medicines and lab diagnostics.
The strategy should consider the following areas:
1. Start Up
- What are the options for the project management structure for the new organization?
- Do they need new staff, and do they have supporting HR policies and procedures?
- There will be a need to hold a staff orientation and training on the new programme being transitioned.
2. Capacity development and technical assistance coordination
- Where does capacity need to be developed to prepare for the transition of the role?
- Is there a need for ongoing organizational support for priority functions?
3. Grant transfer
- Will assets purchased under the grant be transferred to the new organization and how?
4. Organisational systems and governance
- Is there a legal framework in place to manage grants?
- Are there suitable budget management and reporting systems, standard operating procedures (SOPs) and guidance in place and operational?
- Are there implementation SOPs, guidance and templates in place?
- Are there financial management accounting and consolidated reporting systems, manual, SOPs, guidance and templates in place and operational?
- Are there monitoring and evaluation systems, indicator frameworks, databases, manual, SOPs, guidance and templates in place and operational?
- Systems, SOPs and guidance in place and operational for the recruitment and management of technical assistance (TA).
5. Procurement and supply chain management (PSM)
- What are the options for procurement taking into account value for money, procurement architecture needed (Long Term Agreements), the ability to conduct competitive processes, quality assurance, and the role of partners etc?
- Are there systems, SOPs and guidelines for national and international procurement by the new organization?
- What are the options for supply chain management and the preferred choice?
6. Management of implementing partners and onward granting of donor funds.
- Will the new grant and programme management organization(s) need to make onward grants to implementing partners, as well as sub-contracting service delivery organizations. Will the new grant and programme management organizations have the legal mechanisms, operating procedures and supervision in place to do this?
- Are there legal status, systems, processes and templates in place for the new organization to contract implementing partners, such as government contracting civil society groups?
- Are there processes in place to identify and select implementing partners and ensure value for money?
- Do they have capacity to assess the capacity of implementing partners and if required do capacity development and training of them?
- Are there processes to manage, monitor and report on the performance of implementing partners?