A SIMPLE GUIDE TO WRITING A WORK PROGRAMME
This briefing note is an abridged version of a document that needs to be completed by all
applicants requesting funding of £5,001 and above to Ealing Council’s annual grant
programme. We thought it would be useful to revise the document as it outlines a number
of basic methods and techniques that voluntary and community groups can use in the
planning of their activities.
This brief guide should be read in conjunction with some of our other simple guides,
namely: “Business Planning”, “Developing Performance Indicators” and “Planning,
Running, Monitoring and Evaluating Activities” which you will find elsewhere on this site.
There are four basic components to writing a work programme: objectives, key tasks,
targets and evaluation.
An objective is a statement of what you want to achieve over a period of time based on
meeting the organisation's overall aim.
e.g. “To increase transport provision to and from the centre for children with disabilities
from two to three days a week within six months".
"To provide leisure time activities on three evenings a week for the over 50s by the
end of the year".
Objectives should be SMART, i.e.
Specific - there should be no doubt as to what is to be achieved;
Measurable - you must be able to measure progress towards achievement;
Agreed - the people involved in achieving the objectives must agree them;
Realistic - they must be achievable; and
Time based - they must have a time for completion
Each objective should have a number of key tasks that need to be undertaken in order to
meet that objective.
A Key Task is an action or activity that must be carried out to achieve an objective. The
items listed must be non-routine and crucial without which the objective could be met.
e.g. "Recruit additional volunteer drivers".
"Raise funds to buy games, craft equipment, etc."
There should also be a number of targets or standards that you hope to reach for each key
A Target is the level of achievement of a task or a date for its completion.
e.g. "3 drivers to be recruited by end of September"
"Aim to raise £5,000 pounds by December"
Whether or not you reach your target is a measure of your organisation's performance.
At periodic intervals, you should attempt some form of evaluation of your objectives and
services. You will need to look at the targets and performance indicators against each key
task and assess your success in meeting the targets and completing each task.
The evaluation should include your observations e.g. on why something worked particularly
well; why some targets have not been met; what might be done differently in the future; or
how you might meet additional or changing needs.
As well as being a management tool for your organisation, evaluation of the performance of
the organisation will form the basis of your reports to your funders.