ASSESS THE ROLE OF PROJECT PLANNING ON THE PERFOMANCE OF EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM: CASE STUDY NYAMATA CELL. Benimana Kevine, Masters student, University of Kigali-Rwanda.
Abstract: The purpose of this study is to assess the relationship between project planning and project performance of the early childhood development program, The researcher used three specific objectives in order to achieve the purpose of the study. Those objectives are: to assess the relationship between the project team and the performance of the ECD program, to examine the relationship between the stakeholders planning and the ECD performance, to assess the relationship between the scope planning and the ECD performance.
The researcher report will provide recommendations to the government agency in charge of the program, to other scholars that would like to learn more about the project planning influence on the performance of that project and it will attract more curiosity of other researchers to do more researches on this. The researcher will conduct a survey on a targeted sample population of 133 people and will use both simple random sampling and purposive sampling as methods of sampling.The study findings showed that the project team had no statistical significant effect on performance of ECD program with correlation coefficient of β=-.005 for project performance in terms of effective planned work performed and β= -.003 for project performance in terms of efficiency of the selected project team,reffering to the collected data,the results showed that they do not agree that the project team planning can affect the project performance.
Therefore, I have failed to reject the null hypothesis. The study findings indicated that planning stakeholders had a statisticallysignificant effect on performance of the project with a planning project stakeholder’s correlation coefficient of β=.611 for effective cost work performed and β=.743 for efficiency budget cost of work performed. The statistically significant positive correlations also compared well with the findings of Meckling (1976), who established that managers use planning techniques to outline what the various parts of the organization must do for the organization to be successful at some point one year or less into the future hence use of plans in a business environment allowed a manager to choose the best tactics or methods for each situation that arises, rather than following a particular standard procedure.
The study findings showed that review of project activities had a statistically significant effect on performance of the project with review of project scope planning correlation coefficient of β=-.203 for performance of the project in terms of effective planned work performed and β= -.233 for performance of the project in terms of efficiency of project activities, therefore I reject the null hypothesis. The projects are a key economic pillar for economic development as much as Rwanda Vision 2050 is concerned. A healthy nation would provide a vibrant working for projects and so it’s functioning on effective project performance and efficiency of work performed are key performance concerns of the projects. Considering this, the study sought to establish the role of project planning on the performance of early childhood development program in nyamata. The study thus concludes that putting proper project planning would increase performance of projects in terms of effective achievement of work performed.
Keywords: Project planning, Project performance, Stakeholders' participation and team bulding
Early Childhood development is defined as a comprehensive approach to policies and programmes for children from birth to eight years of age, their parents and caregivers aimed at protecting the child’s rights to develop his or her full cognitive ,emotional and physical potential(UNICEF,2011)
Globally, the early childhood program started with countries like Russia as part of their socialist system to help their population and it was included in the educational program; later other countries especially capitalist countries in Europe and the USA applied the same programme but with the aim of facilitating the parents tone have basics in parenting ( as for them the programme was and is still being used to prepare the parents before the birth of their child in nursing teachings & parenting coaching) secondly for the parents to be able to work knowing that their children are safe (through kindergarten schools) (Wikepedia,2015)
However many efforts have been done in several countries even if it started very late compared to the rest of the world and started also with a misunderstanding on the purpose of the programme through the African Early Childhood Network that was established in 2015, every country has tried to put on several projects that aims at sensitizing the communities on the necessity of taking care of their children since their birth by fighting malnutrition, educating the children and coaching parents. (UNICEF,2016).
In Rwanda, the early childhood programme necessity was felt early as the country was rebuilding itself from the genocide perpetrated against the Tutsis in 1994,where all sectors of the country needed to be reconstructed, the wellbeing of the citizen were at the center of all established policies and strategies, children as the future were not forgotten, they were instead focused on as the nation wanted to build a healthy and strong (physically and mentally ) community. (MIGEPROF, 2011).
The NECDA has the role of taking lead in the development of strategic policies process of the early childhood development programme, mobilizing the requested resources for the attainment of the elaborated policies of the early childhood development programme , ensuring the proper implementation of the elaborated policies with the collaboration of other involved sectors in the programme, ensure the alignment by all stakeholders to the national early childhood development strategic plan as well as its monitoring and evaluation plan , ensuring that all stakeholders that are involved in the implementation are meeting the required standards as settled. (NECDA, 2020)
The rationale for this cause was to enable children to have a safe environment that will facilitate them to attend their full development potential and also the programme intends the increase of community awareness to the obligations and responsibilities they have in fighting for children’s rights and fight against any violence they might face.(Save the children, 2013).
Food and Nutrition; The NECDA elaborated measures and initiatives that had the intention in helping the community starting from families the concept of malnutrition this started in explaining the concept itself (as some parents could have kids with malnutrition because of ignorance) after raising the awareness together with stakeholders NECDA allocated resources and strategies to enable long term solutions to the issue. Referring to the strategies, policies, measures and initiatives taken by the national early childhood development agency so much have been done ,however was all the issues solved is the implementation impact all the beneficiaries equally or is there a way to go. (MIGEPROF,2019).
ASSESSING THE ROLE OF PROJECT PLANNING ON THE PERFOMANCE OF ECD
1.2 Theoretical Review
II. REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Sutinen and Kuperan (1999) propounded the socio economic theory of compliance by integrating economic theory with psychology and sociology theories to account moral obligation and social influence as determinants of individuals’ decisions on compliance. According to Lisa (2010) psychological perspectives provide a basis for the successes or failure of organizational compliance. Wilmshurst and Frost (2000) also add that legitimacy theory postulates that the organization is responsible to disclose its practices to the stakeholders, especially to the public and justify its experience within the boundaries of society. From this theory, we can understand that project performance is an outcome of how people involved in the project implementation (the team and the stakeholders) behave psychologically and socially.
Dialectical theory begins with the Hegelian assumption that the organizational entity exists in a pluralistic world of colliding events, forces or contradictory values that compete with each other for domination and control(poole,1995), these oppositions may be internal to an organizational entity which may have several conflicting goals or interest groups competing for priority. But oppositions may also be external to the organizational entity use dialectical theory to explain change in organizations as occurring when the opposing values, forces or events gain sufficient power to confront and engage the status. These opposing forces are termed thesis and antithesis, thesis being the status quo or the ruling way of “doing things”. In such situation a new Synthesis” is developed which at a later stage becomes the status quo and again may be confronted by an opposing force, it must be added that the new situation or “way of things”, the synthesis is not necessarily progress to a better state.
This shows that a project is initiated and implemented by people, in a society people can have contradictions in ideas, in their way of understanding too this if not well managed it can be a hinder to the performance of a project but it can also be a way of involving everybody in the better performance of the project.
2.1 Emperical Review
As stated by ADB(Asian Development Bank , (2005),A good project management capacity is necessary for the success of project, for this the ADB has used special units to manage the project implementation depending on the nature of the assigned tasks and the capacity holded by implementers to facilitate the usual staff to have time to accomplish their usual duties hence the assigned units will much be focused on the new assigned tasks and will provide the requested results.(ADB,2005)
Teams are the basic structure of how project activities and tasks are being organized and managed within companies and organizations. Therefore, the success or the failure of a project depends largely on the overall performance of the teams assigned to the project. This increased attention towards teams has forced many organizations to focus on improving the overall performance of the global nature of businesses and projects.( Okoronkwo,2017)
Stakeholders deeply influence project success, especially for projects where heterogeneous stakeholders are involved; this study argues that it is the organization, its behavior, and management issues such as stakeholder's management which plays a very key role in the improvement of the situation. engaging stakeholders during and especially at the beginning of your project will help reduce and uncover risks and increase their buy-in. When stakeholders are adequately engaged, their influence spreads far and wide. (Schoenland, 2017)
To achieve a project’s objective, many tasks are often accomplished as separate work packages and then integrated into the final product. To deliver a quality product, on time and on budget that meets beneficiaries’ expectations, getting back to the basics and define, communicate, and get agreement on a clear vision for the product is required. To establish this vision, spending the time at the beginning of the project accomplishing and getting agreement on critical activities before writing requirements and beginning product development is essential. These activities before writing requirements and beginning product development are essential. These activities include clearly defining the project and product scope, goals, constraints, assumptions, operational concepts, external interfaces, feasibility and risk assessments .(Mirza,2003).
From the findings, analysis and presentation will be done through frequency tables, regression and percentages aided by Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) (Version 23) computer software. Thereafter will be a brief description of the findings guided by the objectives of the research from the analysis of the data.
Regression Analysis was conducted to investigate the statistical data on effective performance of the early childhood development in nyamata. From tables 4.7, R -square is the models goodness of it. In this case R-square is .789. This means that 79 % of variation ineffective performance of the project can be explained by model used in project planning with only 21% of the variation in effective performance of the project being explained by the error-term orother variables other than project planning. Therefore, from theanalysis, the regression line of the model was strongly fitted to thedata.
The results in the coefficient tables 4.7.3 thus shows that there was a significant effect of project planning on effective performance of the early childhood development since p<.001 which is less thanp>0.05 at a 95% confidence interval. There was also a positive unstandardized beta coefficient of 1.779 as indicated by the coefficient to the planning. This implies there was a positive correlation between project planning and ECD performance in nyamata.
The computed F statistic (3, 116) = 144.228 and the p-value for the overall regression relationship was (p = 0.001), which was also less than the level of significance of 0.05. This indicates that there was a statistically significant effect of planning on effective performance of the project, (F=144.228, R² = 0.789, P-value =0.000 at α=0.05). The probability of the t-statistic (4.842) for the b coefficient is p>0.117 which is greater than the level of significance of 0.05. The regression model further demonstrates thata unit change in project planning will increase effective performance by 1.777 units of projects in ECD. This finding is in line with the finding by Musa (2004), who established that project planning of social activities on performance in terms of repetitive information outputs and reports. This would eventually enhance the organization performance as is brought out by this study.
ASSESSING THE ROLE OF PROJECT PLANNING ON THE PERFOMANCE OF ECD
CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
Projects are a key economic pillar for economic development as much as Rwanda Vision 2050 is concerned. A healthy nation would provide a vibrant working for projects and so it’s functioning on effective project performance and efficiency of work performed are key performance concerns of the projects. Considering this, the study sought to establish the role of project planning on the performance of early childhood development program in nyamata. The study thus concludes that putting proper project planning would increase performance of projects in terms of effective achievement of work performed and better impact on the beneficiaries.
The researcher suggested the following recommendations; projects management staff should acquire current and up to date techniquesof project management, they should also be encouraged to raise their experience level in order to perform the required functions and improve the life of the children that are being raised in the ECD centers. Project management should also involve stakeholders that are able to participate and improve the project in the benefit of the community. The project management should also work on elaborating activities basing on the level of very community, for instance the ECD centers are all over the country and work hand in hands with the parents but parents do not have the same level therefore the project managers should consider that and elaborate activities considering those different levels of beneficiaries.
Suggestion for Further Research
Researcher suggest that the next study should analyzed the effect of integrated project cost control on performance of projects in Rwanda. The study should be done across many projects in order to come up with comparative analysis conclusive findings. Researcher further recomends that study should be conducted on accounting information system on projects performance of the projects in Rwanda.
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