The strategic planning process needs a Project Owner to manage and oversee the process, facilitate the dialogue between different actors and stakeholders and to be a lynchpin to the completed assessment process and its implementation.
Stakeholder engagement is one of the most important factors for the future success of the strategic plan, including ensuring clear ownership at appropriate levels in the organisation. Although stakeholder engagement should ideally have taken place, this is a good time to review, update and re-energise the stakeholder communication plan.
With the Project Owner in place and stakeholders engaged, the next stage is to identify the goal(s) of the strategy. The goal(s) should:
- Clarify the benefit that is intended to result from the transformation.
- Be a priority for the government, sector or entity or contribute directly to such priorities.
- Be meaningful for the key stakeholders and reflect their concerns and priorities.
For example, the goal of the Public Procurement Reform Strategy in the Republic of Zambia is "to promote and institutionalise a transparent, accountable and efficient public procurement system in order to improve expenditure management" (source).
Each goal identified needs a vision, in other words, a description of what the situation will look like when the goal is achieved e.g. if the goal is to institutionalise a transparent procurement system - what will that transparent procurement system look like and how will you be able to recognise that it has been achieved?
Different stakeholders may have different expectations or ideas about this e.g. supplier or civil society representatives may have different expectations than government officials of how transparent a procurement system should be. Making the visioning a participatory process involving the key stakeholders, with input of key evidence including assessment findings, can help clarify differences and identify a common vision with appropriate ownership.
Indicators of success
Indicators should be developed for the goal(s) with indicative baselines and targets, though these may well need to be adjusted further on in the process. Goal indicators should be high level and few and measure the overall progress. At the national level for example, scoring against the MAPS tool could be used as an overall goal indicator.
Download the file "Methodology for Assessing Procurement Systems" to support your work.