Evaluation of UNDP inter-agency operational services

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2018-2021, Independent Evaluation Office
Evaluation Type:
Thematic
Planned End Date:
09/2018
Completion Date:
08/2018
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
140,000

Share

Document Type Language Size Status Downloads
Download document ToR Interagency services.pdf tor English 945.21 KB Posted 193
Download document Annexes Interagency services.pdf related-document English 1309.55 KB Posted 800
Download document Eval_Interagency_Operations-2018.pdf report English 1918.51 KB Posted 762
Download document EB_Paper_Interagency_Operations-2018.pdf related-document English 180.47 KB Posted 417
Download document Brief Inter-agency operational services evaluation.pdf summary English 936.94 KB Posted 457
Title Evaluation of UNDP inter-agency operational services
Atlas Project Number:
Evaluation Plan: 2018-2021, Independent Evaluation Office
Evaluation Type: Thematic
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 08/2018
Planned End Date: 09/2018
Management Response: Yes
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Organisational Output 2.2 Cost-sharing agreements and projects ensure full cost recovery
  • 2. Organisational Output 2.3 Quality and efficient management services to support programme delivery
Evaluation Budget(US $): 140,000
Source of Funding:
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 85,000
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Aline Briseno Verdade
Christine Heyting
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: GLOBAL
Lessons
Findings
1.

3.1 FINANCIAL FLOWS AND OPERATIONAL TRENDS

All trends presented below will be explained further in findings ahead.

Finding 1. UN entities receiving services. UNDP has the largest geographical footprint of operational services among all UN agencies. It currently provides services to over 80 UN entities, including specialized agencies, missions, UN funds and programmes in over 170 countries. An increase in the number of client UN entities of 9 percent is observed from 2010 to 2017.


Tag: Operational Efficiency Service delivery Shared Services UN Agencies

2.

Finding 2. Cost recovery trends. UNDP has only partially recovered the cost of providing agencies services – a total of $427 million between 2010 and 2017, an average of about $53 million per year, which is less than 10 percent of the total amount UNDP recovers for implementing its own development projects. A decrease of 11.4 percent in recovered costs from agencies services was observed in 2017, following an 18 percent increase in 2016.


Tag: Efficiency Service delivery Shared Services

3.

Finding 3. Payroll and benefit services trends. UNDP provides global payroll, benefits and entitlements for almost as many staff members from other UN entities as from UNDP. The amount of services has remained relatively stable over the years. The organization is one of the few agencies able to make payments in local currencies, with existing banking and customary arrangements.


Tag: Efficiency Human and Financial resources Service delivery Operational Services

4.

Finding 4. Procurement trends. UNDP has procured $1.966 billion for other UN entities between 2010 and 2017. An increase of about 20 percent is observed since 2015. UNDP remains competitive even though other agencies are increasingly able to provide comparable procurement options and services.


Tag: Efficiency Procurement Service delivery Shared Services

5.

Finding 5. Transactions and investment trends. UNDP has managed a total of $1.6 billion in financial transactions and $7 billion in investments for UN entities, including UNDP, between 2010 and 2017. The organization has a solid banking network and is the only agency in most countries able to receive contributions and make payments in local currencies.


Tag: Efficiency Service delivery Shared Services

6.

3.2 EFFECTIVENESS AND EFFICIENCY OF UNDP OPERATIONAL SERVICES

Across its operational services globally, wide variations can be discerned in UNDP efficiency and effectiveness. This is hardly surprising across operations in 170 countries and the varying scope and roles for UN agencies across these countries. Below are some generalized findings to the extent that data gathered made possible, considering the context.

Finding 6. Effectiveness and areas of success. The effectiveness of UNDP in providing operational services to other UN entities has varied across different services and locations. UN entities expressed being more satisfied with services provided by UNDP specialized units, and less so with services provided at the country level that display greater variation and often require follow-up. The organization has been most successful providing Junior Professional Officers services, global payroll, benefits and entitlements and treasury services.  


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Service delivery Shared Services

7.

Finding 7. Efficiency and areas for improvement. There is room for improvement in the efficiency of UNDP operational services provision and the organization indicates commitment to such improvements in the promises of the recently approved 2018-2021 Strategic Plan to “make the organization more nimble, innovative and enterprising to better serve as catalyst and facilitator of support to the UNS; and to accelerate efficiencies gains through BOS, mutual recognition and broader operational harmonization.”


Tag: Efficiency Operational Efficiency Service delivery Shared Services UN Agencies Operational Services

8.

Finding 8. Client orientation and staff capacities. Overall, where clients were unsatisfied, UNDP lacked client orientation, linked to varying degrees of adequate staffing capacities to provide timely quality services and transparency in billing and cost recovery, which is worse at the country level.


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Change Management Human and Financial resources Service delivery Operational Services

9.

Finding 9. Harmonization and mutual recognition. Mutual recognition is not yet widely accepted by UN entities and the lack of harmonization of policies, procedures and systems throughout the UN system challenges integration of provision of services.


Tag: Coherence Communication Harmonization Service delivery Operational Services

10.

Finding 10. Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). UNDP does not make consistent use of SLAs and KPIs. There are SLAs developed at the corporate level, but at the country level, for the most part, these are not in place, nor does the organization or agencies have prioritized consistently tracking and monitoring them. 


Tag: Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Policies & Procedures Service delivery Operational Services

11.

Finding 11. Appraisal systems and feedback channels. UNDP lacks adequate appraisal systems for quality and satisfaction it provides to agencies, and there are no automated feedback channels for real-time adaptive management.


Tag: Operational Efficiency Service delivery

12.

Finding 12. Transparency of costs and value for money. The lack of transparency about the pricing of UNDP services and poor communication on the subject drives agencies to question value for money, despite recognizing that UNDP’s services are often much cheaper than having their own entities provide them.


Tag: Anti-corruption Communication Operational Efficiency Service delivery Shared Services Country Government Operational Services

13.

Finding 13. Under-investment in information technology. Investments in ICT saw a spike from $2.6 million in 2016 to $8.5 million in 2017 to adjust to the UNDP restructuring of offices and functions, and as a result ICT under-investment of the period 2013-2016. However, the organization is still challenged by outdated systems, inadequate tools and a limited number of IT staff to address needs and demands adequately.


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Change Management Harmonization Human and Financial resources Policies & Procedures Service delivery Shared Services Technology

14.

Finding 14. Clustering. Full clustering of agencies non-location dependent services could have been delivering greater efficiencies, savings and economies of scale. However, UNDP lacks a clear vision for clustering with the adequate resources, tools, processes and implementation plans.


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Business Model Communication Country Support Platform Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Policies & Procedures Procurement Quality Assurance Service delivery Shared Services

15.

Finding 15. Advantages of integrated service models. Integrated service models at the country level are not necessarily more efficient and cost-effective but they have provided UNCTs with more ownership over operational services strategies and higher satisfaction levels. Models studied in Brazil, Cape Verde, Viet Nam and Copenhagen displayed more neutral, less-biased and shared governance mechanisms, improved client orientation and more open space to build on the professionalization of operations staff.


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Government Cost-sharing Integration Operational Efficiency Ownership Service delivery Shared Services UN Country Team Operational Services

16.

Finding 16. Challenges of the integrated models. Integration of operational services arrangements at the country level is still challenged in terms of buy-in by United Nations entities, financial sustainability and dependence on UNDP as the legal entity, a role with inherent costs, risks and liabilities. 


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Sustainability Integration Operational Efficiency Policies & Procedures Risk Management Service delivery Shared Services Country Government UN Agencies Operational Services

17.

3.3 VALUE ADDED FOR UN ENTITIES TO HAVE UNDP AS A SERVICE PROVIDER

Finding 17. Value added for UN entities. Cost savings and value for money are key initial values added, but cost efficiencies are not enough to achieve and maintain UN entities’ satisfaction. Agencies expect improved processes, quality and timeliness of services, responsiveness, and risk reductions.


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Gender Equality Gender Mainstreaming Gender Parity Women's Empowerment Human and Financial resources Joint UN Programme Policies & Procedures Programme Synergy Risk Management Strategic Positioning Agenda 2030

18.

3.4 VALUE ADDED FOR UNDP TO PROVIDE OPERATIONAL SERVICES TO OTHER UN ENTITIES

Finding 18. Value added for UNDP. Economies of scale are the most tangible value-added UNDP benefits from providing services to other UN entities. Other benefits are more intangible and include opportunities to position UNDP as a leader in the UN system; synergies built among UN entities; enhanced UN coordination; and greater visibility. To a limited extent, UNDP also benefits from generated innovations and improvements to address other agencies’ needs. Advantages UNDP is not benefiting from are full cost recovery for its services and efficiencies at the country level from further offshoring of agencies services and integration of back office support services.


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Donor relations Knowledge management Policies & Procedures Procurement Service delivery Shared Services Strategic Positioning Country Government Operational Services

19.

3.5 UNDP CHALLENGES IN PROVIDING OPERATIONAL SERVICES TO OTHER UN ENTITIES

Finding 19. Challenges for UNDP. UNDP faces challenges in providing services to other UN entities due to the lack of financial and human resources; inadequate managerial tools and systems; and its inability to properly price and fully recover cost for agencies services. This is to some extent negatively affecting UNDP’s reputation and attention to its development mandate and partners.


Tag: Challenges Effectiveness Efficiency Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Partnership Policies & Procedures Service delivery Shared Services Operational Services

20.

Finding 20. Lack of incentives and a vision with boundaries. The absence of incentives, such as performance assessments to serve other UN entities, and the absence of a vision with boundaries has often led to lack of buy-in and demotivates UNDP staff to provide quality services to other UN entities.


Tag: Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Service delivery Shared Services Operational Services

Recommendations
1

UNDP should develop a clear vision refining its role vis-à-vis the UNDS reform to serve United Nations entities with improved customer orientation and quality of services. In developing a clear vision, UNDP should strategically specify boundaries – what services are to its advantage to offer and how – and demonstrate that it wants the business of United Nations agencies with a plan to improve client orientation through proper incentives to improve quality of services. This includes developing SLAs with mandatory reporting of KPIs and establishing a real-time appraisal system with automated feedback channels incorporated into service delivery to ensure quality of services and timeliness of response.

2

The Bureau for Management Services should appropriately price and implement full cost recovery for all services to United Nations entities. It will thus be important to revise current cost-recovery methodologies, reconsider the universal price list and offer tools and capacity-building for country offices to customize costing methods that better capture the process chain behind each service line, including the cost of managing risks and liabilities absorbed by UNDP as a service provider. As it devises a more detailed costing strategy, UNDP should also identify where efficiency gains can be made in processes, compared to other agencies and include the cost of business sustainability enhancements.

3

UNDP should incrementally implement full clustering of non-location dependent services, for all regions and all country offices, on a mandatory basis at least for services to agencies. The Bureau for Management Services will thus need to assess the current capacities available at the GSSUs and develop a strategy to develop adequate structures and professionalize services, adapting locations as needed for languages and time zones. The role of leadership is pivotal to ensure that all regional bureaux adjust to this centralized model needed for further economies of scale and efficiencies. As the UNDS reform establishes new service hubs led by other United Nations agencies, these should be considered to absorb part of the services to be rendered to other United Nations entities, as appropriate.

4

UNDP should promote common shared integrated service arrangements at the country level for location dependent services. The Bureau for Management Services will need to conduct a more critical assessment of what are currently considered location dependent services and identify which services are absolutely necessary to be kept in country and cannot be provided by GSSUs. UNDP should then promote the idea that all location dependent services be provided by local common shared integrated services arrangements, by establishing a well-defined corporate structure to support an improved model for roll-out of United Nations business operations strategies to support these integrated arrangements. At the same time, to strategically position UNDP, the organization should make available tools, such as the business operations strategy automated cost-benefit analysis, to help UNCTs and UNDP country offices make more transparent and data-informed decisions around the cost and efficiencies of local shared integrated service arrangements.

5

UNDP should develop a phased approach to invest in ICT tools and systems improvements over the next five years and ensure that critical staff and an effective strategy are in place to harvest such investments. This includes investing in an upgrade of the ERP to improve its user interfaces and a realtime appraisal system with automated feedback channels to monitor and improve the quality of services. UNDP should also consider partnering with other agencies for e-commerce solutions and explore business partnership solutions to co-develop and pilot innovative and state-of-theart tools and systems, including eventually the replacement of the current ERP, better customized to the needs of all United Nations entities.

1. Recommendation:

UNDP should develop a clear vision refining its role vis-à-vis the UNDS reform to serve United Nations entities with improved customer orientation and quality of services. In developing a clear vision, UNDP should strategically specify boundaries – what services are to its advantage to offer and how – and demonstrate that it wants the business of United Nations agencies with a plan to improve client orientation through proper incentives to improve quality of services. This includes developing SLAs with mandatory reporting of KPIs and establishing a real-time appraisal system with automated feedback channels incorporated into service delivery to ensure quality of services and timeliness of response.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/08/15] [Last Updated: 2020/06/27]

UNDP management agrees with this recommendation and is working actively to ensure that its ability to provide management and operational support services plays a critical role in supporting the growth and positioning of UNDP as the backbone of the United Nations system, and achieves the vision and improved business model reflected in the Strategic Plan, 2018-2021. The completed corporate review of management services is supporting the development of this new corporate business model which focuses on areas where UNDP can deliver the best value to its partners.

UNDP is investing in digital platforms and is streamlining its business processes to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of its field operations. This will provide opportunities for the broader United Nations system to take advantage of these streamlined processes and systems to enhance their own delivery.

The UNDP Strategic Plan, 2018-2021 clearly defines the vision of UNDP for its role at the country level as:

(a) An integrator across policy, programme and organizational silos that delivers impact at scale and utilizes limited resources efficiently on the 2030 Agenda for Development;

(b) An operational backbone for United Nations and other partners whereby many United Nations agencies utilize the UNDP implementation capacity, including its information technology (IT), finance and human resources infrastructure, to enable them to operate effectively and cost efficiently in difficult and sometimes risky operational contexts.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1.4. Conduct a detailed baseline analysis on current service quality standards and client needs, including service costing and pricing analysis/review, leading to updated agreements with United Nations agencies on service provision and revised set of KPIs, baselines and targets for tracking continuous process improvement and client satisfaction for country offices.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2018/12/04]
Cross-organization implementation team 2019/12 Overdue-Initiated CO BOS working group established and tool to gather performance data designed. BMS Business Solutions unit is reviewing UN agency agreements. History
1.1. Review and update corporate service-level agreements (SLAs) with United Nations agencies.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2019/08/23]
Bureau for Management Services 2019/08 Completed SLAs have been reviewed; new SLA with UNDSS has been signed this year, and discussions of reciprocity of SLA for services to UNDP from UNDSS also initiated. Global SLA with UN Women under discussion to be finalized in 2019. Corporate SLA template has been reviewed and revised as part of the UNDP Service Excellence Project. New SLA template is to be ready and published to be used by the country offices by October 2019. With the actions taken and planned, implementation of this recommendation is considered completed. History
1.2. Develop a revised set of KPIs, baselines and targets for tracking continuous process improvement and client satisfaction from global shared service units.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2019/08/23]
Bureau for Management Services 2019/08 Completed A thorough review of the KPIs of Global Shared Service Unit has been done, and a number of new KPIs related to the clustered services have also been added. KPIs are being closely tracked and monitored by GSSU and reported. This action is therefore considered completed. History
1.3. Establish customer service enhancement structures, mechanisms and focal points at headquarters, regional and country office levels.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2019/08/23]
Cross-organization implementation team 2019/08 Completed UNDP’s Strategic Plan (2018-2021) sets a strong vision and a clear commitment of UNDP to UN Reform with UNDP taking on the critical role of an operational backbone for the UN and other partners at the country level. To achieve this, several robust steps have been implemented to strengthen UNDP’s client orientation. A Service Excellence Project was launched focusing on customer centricity, feedback mechanisms, streamlining services, and improving methodology as well as transparency of cost and charging for the services. The report of the Service Excellence Project is final and planning is underway to put the steps into practice. Additionally, in order to guide the service deliverers on management of customer expectations at the country office (CO) level, SMART KPIs have been designed to be embedded in CO level agreements and mechanisms to improve the governance of service monitoring have been proposed. Among the longer term actions recommended in the proposed report is design and establishment of a Customer Service Management Portal which simplifies and automates the service ordering/tracking process at two ends, and has a two-way feedback mechanism inter alia. A Customer Service Management Portal has been already developed for UNDP’s services to the UN Resident Coordinator Offices and experience with the portal will be utilized in the development of a similar portal for other agencies. In parallel, UNDP is contributing to the work of the Business Innovations Group to achieve the UNDS reform targets, as set out by the Secretary-General, and leads the efforts toward implementation of Business Operations Strategy. On the services to be provided to the other agencies, UNDP has participated in a marketplace survey and has identified all services it can offer to other agencies. Furthermore, more emphasis has been given to customer orientation through a recently revamped and synergized structure of a Client Business Solutions Team in BMS. Two new positions (Client Services Specialists) have been established within the team to focus on improving customers relationship management and coordination of timely and integrated solutions to meet clients’ expectations. The recruitment processes of the posts are expected to be completed by October 2019. With consideration of the above, implementation of the recommended action is considered completed. History
2. Recommendation:

The Bureau for Management Services should appropriately price and implement full cost recovery for all services to United Nations entities. It will thus be important to revise current cost-recovery methodologies, reconsider the universal price list and offer tools and capacity-building for country offices to customize costing methods that better capture the process chain behind each service line, including the cost of managing risks and liabilities absorbed by UNDP as a service provider. As it devises a more detailed costing strategy, UNDP should also identify where efficiency gains can be made in processes, compared to other agencies and include the cost of business sustainability enhancements.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/08/15] [Last Updated: 2020/06/27]

UNDP management agrees with this recommendation, recognizing the need for a change in cost pricing from partial to full cost recovery and is committed to improving the predictability of the cost structure to enable United Nations agencies to undertake their planning accordingly. UNDP is currently reviewing the cost recovery levels and agreements (SLAs) for organizational support services that it provides to United Nations agencies.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
2.1. Review cost-recovery levels for global services.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2019/08/23]
Bureau for Management Services 2019/12 Overdue-Initiated Cost recovery for global services has gone through a complete review, and the full cost recovery methodology has been applied in all recently completed or renewed SLA’s. History
2.2. Review (and update) corporate SLAs with United Nations agencies.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2019/08/23]
Bureau for Management Services 2019/11 Overdue-Initiated SLAs have been reviewed. Corporate SLA template is under revision as part of the UNDP Service Excellence Project. New SLA template is to be ready and published to be used by the COs by October 2019. Revised costing methodology will be implemented once they are final. History
2.3. Conduct a detailed costing and pricing analysis/review of country office services.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2018/12/04]
Cross-organization implementation team 2019/12 Overdue-Initiated BMS Working group established and tool being designed to gather performance data. The group is working with EXO and work is linked to BOS tool. Draft costing methodology has been developed for internal review. History
2.4. Review (and update) country office SLAs with United Nations agencies.
[Added: 2018/08/20] [Last Updated: 2018/09/18]
Cross-organization implementation team 2019/12 Overdue-Initiated Some SLAs have already been reviewed and renegotiated (e.g. UN Women: streamlined SLA regarding field services adding KPIs and flexibility to adjust locally). History
3. Recommendation:

UNDP should incrementally implement full clustering of non-location dependent services, for all regions and all country offices, on a mandatory basis at least for services to agencies. The Bureau for Management Services will thus need to assess the current capacities available at the GSSUs and develop a strategy to develop adequate structures and professionalize services, adapting locations as needed for languages and time zones. The role of leadership is pivotal to ensure that all regional bureaux adjust to this centralized model needed for further economies of scale and efficiencies. As the UNDS reform establishes new service hubs led by other United Nations agencies, these should be considered to absorb part of the services to be rendered to other United Nations entities, as appropriate.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/08/15] [Last Updated: 2020/06/27]

UNDP management agrees with this recommendation. As part of the management response to the recent OAI audit of the UNDP clustering process and the analysis conducted by the review of management services, UNDP has established an action plan that includes the review of the corporate design and principles of clustering. UNDP is committed to the full implementation of clustering of non-location dependent services for all regions and country offices on a mandatory basis. UNDP commits to efficiently provide services to United Nations entities and to actively explore ways to work together with other service providers of the United Nations system.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
3.1. Design and develop the high-level design of the process for clustering of non-location dependent services.
[Added: 2018/09/07] [Last Updated: 2019/04/02]
Cross-organization implementation team including Bureau for Management Services, regional bureaux, Executive Office 2018/12 Completed The team has been appointed and a very comprehensive proposal has been developed as part of a broader clustering business case including support from an external consulting firm taking into considerations the lessons learned from the RBAP pilot and the OAI audit, anchored in the GSSU. History
3.2. Business cases for clustering implementation of non-location dependent services established.
[Added: 2018/09/07] [Last Updated: 2019/04/02]
Cross-organization implementation team including Bureau for Management Services, regional bureaux, Executive Office 2018/12 Completed The team has been appointed and a very comprehensive proposal has been developed as part of a broader clustering business case including support from an external consulting firm taking into considerations the lessons learned from the RBAP pilot and the OAI audit, anchored in the GSSU. History
4. Recommendation:

UNDP should promote common shared integrated service arrangements at the country level for location dependent services. The Bureau for Management Services will need to conduct a more critical assessment of what are currently considered location dependent services and identify which services are absolutely necessary to be kept in country and cannot be provided by GSSUs. UNDP should then promote the idea that all location dependent services be provided by local common shared integrated services arrangements, by establishing a well-defined corporate structure to support an improved model for roll-out of United Nations business operations strategies to support these integrated arrangements. At the same time, to strategically position UNDP, the organization should make available tools, such as the business operations strategy automated cost-benefit analysis, to help UNCTs and UNDP country offices make more transparent and data-informed decisions around the cost and efficiencies of local shared integrated service arrangements.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/08/15] [Last Updated: 2020/06/27]

UNDP management agrees with this recommendation and in implementing its Strategic Plan and recommendations stemming from the analysis of management services, will continue to seek efficiencies in its operations as informed by performance metrics, business intelligence and other quantitative and qualitative measures, including value for money and the benefits delivered. As noted above, a key area of action emerging from the management services review focuses specifically on country office business operations. In addition, improving efficiency and streamlining compliance processes will be critical, taking into account factors such as risk management, accountability, empowerment and the need for differentiated country office capacities. Additionally, as part of the implementation of the management action plan for the recommendations of the OAI audit of the UNDP clustering process, UNDP management will assess those services that are currently provided in-country but have potential to be clustered.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
4.1. As part of the process of completing the business case on the design of the clustering of non-location dependent services, UNDP will propose principles and criteria for the assessment of clustered services.
[Added: 2018/09/07] [Last Updated: 2019/04/02]
Bureau for Management Services 2018/12 Completed The team has been appointed and a very comprehensive proposal has been developed as part of a broader clustering business case including support from an external consulting firm taking into considerations the lessons learned from the RBAP pilot and the OAI audit, anchored in the GSSU. History
4.2. Develop a support structure and tools to contribute to the roll-out of the United Nations business operations strategies.
[Added: 2018/09/07] [Last Updated: 2019/08/23]
Cross-organization implementation team including Bureau for Management Services, regional bureaux, Executive Office 2019/06 Completed Support structure for BOS has been established. A corporate focal point has been appointed as part of the Executive Office Surge Team and is working with BMS and the Regional Bureaus on testing the new BOS guideline and the system developed by UNDP. The action is completed; BOS support structure in UNDP is in place and UNDP will continue to work with DCO on global rollout of BOS. History
5. Recommendation:

UNDP should develop a phased approach to invest in ICT tools and systems improvements over the next five years and ensure that critical staff and an effective strategy are in place to harvest such investments. This includes investing in an upgrade of the ERP to improve its user interfaces and a realtime appraisal system with automated feedback channels to monitor and improve the quality of services. UNDP should also consider partnering with other agencies for e-commerce solutions and explore business partnership solutions to co-develop and pilot innovative and state-of-theart tools and systems, including eventually the replacement of the current ERP, better customized to the needs of all United Nations entities.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/08/15] [Last Updated: 2020/06/27]

UNDP management agrees with this recommendation and would like to highlight that it is working on a new digital transformation strategy that will focus on new technologies that can drive innovation and efficiency gains in operational service delivery, and more critically is establishing the proper enablers such as policy, processes and staff capacities that will allow such to occur. In addition, the current UNDP ICT governance structure is aligned to ISO 38500, which is the international standard for organizational IT governance and is considered a best practice globally.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
5.1. Develop a digital strategy outlining the vision for the UNDP IT capabilities, in line with the UNDP Strategic Plan, 2018-2021.
[Added: 2018/09/07] [Last Updated: 2019/04/02]
Cross-organization implementation team including Bureau for Management Services, regional bureaux, Executive Office 2018/12 Completed The digital strategy has been developed in cooperation with representatives of bureaux and business units of UNDP. It has been vetted with high external organisations such as MIT, NASA, European Space Agency and Airbus and has been shared for feedback with several member states. An external consultant has been recruited for additional quality control purposes including a review process with experts from within the organisation. History
5.2. Initiation of Atlas upgrade to version 9.2.
[Added: 2018/09/07] [Last Updated: 2019/04/02]
Bureau for Management Services 2018/12 Completed The ATLAS upgrade to the finance module has been approved by the OPG and has been initiaited by the responsible project team. History
5.3. Establishment of digital innovations platform.
[Added: 2018/09/07] [Last Updated: 2018/12/04]
Cross-organization implementation team including Bureau for Management Services, regional bureaux, Executive Office 2018/12 Completed The innovation platform was announced at the OIMT ICT workshop in Istanbul in October. The platform is on an Azure platform and is accessible by developers in COs, regional bureaux and developers across UNDP. The applications developed on the platform will be vetted for security and interoperability with UNDP's infrastructure and made available for use across UNDP. History

Latest Evaluations

Contact us

1 UN Plaza
DC1-20th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Tel. +1 646 781 4200
Fax. +1 646 781 4213
erc.support@undp.org