4.1. Collecting the data

The manager of an internal or external evaluation team will need to ensure the collection of data follows the appropriate methodology and timeframes set out in section 5 of the work plan (see section 2.5. Evaluation methodology). It is the responsibility of the manager to respond to any issues that arise and communicate often and early with the team.[1]

The evaluation team should have expertise in data collection and be able to provide advice on issues including data quality. It is important to ensure data quality checking is undertaken when the data is collected, such as checking datasets for completeness, spot checking survey responses, and random checks for online systems.[2]

Collecting baseline data will allow for meaningful comparisons. Ideally, baseline data will be collected prior to program implementation. For programs that have already commenced, baseline data will need to be collected retrospectively. In the absence of available baseline data, it may be appropriate to use benchmarking against best practice research or similar existing programs.

[1] BetterEvaluation: Manager's guide to evaluation – 7. Manage implementation of the evaluation

[2] NSW Department of Premier & Cabinet: Evaluation toolkit – 6. Manage implementation of the workplan, including production of report(s)

Last updated: 14 December 2020

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