Planning, managing and evaluating your project

Planning, managing and evaluating your project

Service design works alongside a variety of other approaches, including quality improvement and project management methodologies. 

Planning and managing

Tips for managing a design-led project:

  • Allow for some flexibility in your plan. The design approach means that you will not know the outcome from the beginning and your plan will develop as you deliver it. 
  • Be sure to allow enough time in the early stages of Creating the Conditions and Discover-Define. It is important to understand the problem thoroughly before moving on to solutions. 
  • Bring in specialist knowledge and expertise where necessary – this might include service design, ethics, user and staff engagement and information governance. 


Hints and Tips

There were three reasons why projects did not progress as quickly as they would have liked in the TLS (Transforming Local Systems) programme: 

  • Delays (or underestimating the time needed) to recruit to project posts;
  • Delays (or underestimating the time needed) to gain ethical approval;
  • Difficulties accessing data for primary and secondary research.

Project plans should make realistic and closely monitored provision for these activities. 



It is important to build in an evaluation process at the outset of your work. Use the ways that local organisations will already monitor change and improvement over time to:

  • Help to track the impact of what you are doing 
  • Ensure consistency
  • Ensure a high profile for your work 

Hints and Tips

  • Consider how you might measure changes in knowledge, relationships and ways of working as well as any products or services you deliver.
  • Use your research findings to inform your measurement systems and indicators. 
  • Quality improvement evaluation methodologies can help to evaluate whether and how a change leads to better services or outcomes. 


Resources to support planning, managing and evaluating your project

Resource Source

What is it and what is it for?

Quality Improvement Tools NHS Education for Scotland Requires TURAS Login: A suite of tools and templates to support project planning and management. 
Better Evaluation Better Evaluation A comprehensive resource which covers different types of evaluation.  
Evaluation Support Scotland Evaluation Support Scotland Evaluation Support Scotland works with third sector organisations so that they can measure and explain their impact. They have a library of tools and resources. 
Last Updated: 13 December 2023