In the context of the reform of the Council of Europe, the introduction of a new, more strategic Programme and Budget, a move to a biennial cycle, a need for focused, precise and measurable objectives and robust follow-up have become all the more important.
The Committee of Ministers has highlighted the need for a common methodology and a common language within the Council of Europe for introducing clear reporting and evaluation, in order to make results more visible and to effectively identify strategic choices for the future Council of Europe Programme and Budget.
From this perspective, it is important to devise SMART - Specific objectives that are Measurable, Attainable at an acceptable cost, Relevant to the objective concerned, and verifiable within a reasonable period of Time - expected results attached to clear objectives. In order to measure whether SMART expected results and, ultimately, objectives are achieved, having relevant indicators is very paramount since they form part of the Results Based Budgeting process and allow assessing the implementation of the Programme and Budget inter alia through the Council of Europe Progress Review Report.
Setting clear objectives, SMART expected results and relevant performance indicators also allows for timely adjustments to programmes and re-allocation of resources to priority areas, and ensures the effective use of human and financial resources of the Organisation, allowing for more strategic planning, evaluation and resource mobilisation. This is even more important in the context of the increasing use of extrabudgetary resources by the Organisation.Programme