5. Assessment planning and preparation

Rapid but adequate planning and preparation before deploying the field assessment team will help to make the assessment more effective. The effectiveness of assessment will be reduced, and assessment teams will lose time if prior planning is not carried out.

In particular, CARE team must have a clearly articulated Analysis Plan, based on the format below (from Annex 4.21; the MIRA guidelines – 2015):

CARE assessment team should design such analysis plan detailing what data to collect, where to access the information (secondary and/or primary data), and what type of analyses and comparisons it will be required to interpret it (i.e. geographical or group comparisons, trends over time).

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The analysis plan must be developed before designing the data collection tools to ensure that only useful and necessary information is collected. This also helps to assess the feasibility of the assessment. When all information needs and available resources have been considered, it is possible to decide whether or not the assessment can be undertaken as initially planned.

The checklist in section 5.1 will help with planning.

Checklist

Analysis Plan
  • Does the assessment team have a framework providing details of the information that needs to be collected from primary and secondary sources? Reminder: one common problem is that too much data is collected!
Clear objectives
  • Are the objectives of the mission clear, included in the terms of reference, and understood and agreed by all team members and key stakeholders?
Appropriate team composition
  • Has the Assessment Team Leader been identified?
  • Has the team got the right mix of technical and functional skills to achieve the objectives of the assessment?
  • Does the team include women and men, and people with local language and cultural skills?
  • Are other agencies and/or the affected community represented on the assessment team?
Logistical support
  • Has adequate logistics and administrative planning been done to ensure the team can get the job done effectively and safely?
Information requirements
  • Has the team planned and identified the priority information needs to focus on during the assessment?
  • What information is required to meet the objectives and to conduct the analysis required?
  • What information is needed to ensure that cross-cutting issues can be understood? (for example, gender, protection)
Involving disaster affected people in the assessment
  • How will the team involve disaster-affected women and men in the assessment process?
  • Has the community been informed of the planned visit?
Information sources
  • Who is the team going to talk to?
  • What are the available sources of information?
Data collection methods
  • What mix of data collection methods will the team use? What skills or tools are required to use these methods?
Guidelines and tools
  • What guidelines and tools will the team use in the field to help with information gathering and analysis?
Analysis frameworks
  • How will the data be analysed?
  • What contextual analysis is necessary to make appropriate recommendations?
  • What information and tools can help with the analysis?
Recommendations
  • What types of decision-making recommendations are expected of the team?
  • Who are the recommendations for?
Reporting
  • When will the team deliver a preliminary report? Final report?
  • What format will the team use for the report?
  • Will an internal version and a public version of the report be released?
Proposals and other outputs
  • What other outputs will the team prepare?
  • What is the expectation for proposals, operational plans and communications outputs?