Strategy Evaluation Process: Comprehensive Guide + Examples

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The process of strategy evaluation is often overlooked in the overall strategic management process. After the flurry of activity in the initial planning stages, followed by the reality check of executing your strategy alongside business-as-usual, strategy evaluation is often neglected.

When this occurs, strategies quickly become outdated and out-of-sync with the changing face of the organization. As we found out in the state of strategy report , the process of getting your plan in the hands of your people is the hardest and most important thing you can do for your strategy - and your company’s success.

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What Is Strategy Evaluation?

Strategy evaluation is the process of analyzing a strategy to assess how well it's been implemented and executed. A strategy evaluation is an internal analysis tool and should be used as part of a broader strategic analysis for the organization when making decisions about your strategy.  

Typically, the strategy evaluation process involves answering questions such as:

  • How much progress have we made towards our Vision?
  • Are our Strategic Focus Areas still relevant?
  • Which of our Objectives have we completed?
  • Which Objectives are no longer needed?
  • Do we have sufficient Projects to deliver incomplete Objectives?
  • Are our KPIs still effective for measuring progress towards our Objectives?
  • Where we fell short of our targets, why did this happen?

At the very least, you need to evaluate your strategy twice a year - or better yet, every quarter. Even if you feel as though your existing strategy is 'too far gone' and needs a fresh start, you'll want to perform a thorough strategy evaluation of what went wrong last time around.

The mistake that people often make when it comes to strategy execution , is thinking of their strategy as a linear set of steps. I'm sure you've all seen those PowerPoint slides with the strategy running from left to right on the page?

In reality, strategy is a circular process of constant iteration and evolution. A good strategy should never really 'end'. Rather, it should morph into something more ambitious and sophisticated as goals are met.

Strategy Evaluation Process

Step 1- evaluation starts at the start.

It may sound counter-intuitive but ideally, you'll be kicking off your strategy evaluation process back in the planning stage. Strategy evaluation is essentially the process of figuring out:

  • What did we do well?
  • How can we improve upon what we did well?
  • What did we learn about ourselves and the environment along the way?

One of the best ways to answer these questions is by setting effective KPIs in your planning stage. We'll look at an example:

Let's say that your vision is "to become the number one provider of strategy software in the world."

Then let's say that you have a focus area which is "Becoming the primary source of strategic knowledge on the internet".

To be able to effectively evaluate progress, you're going to need a KPI of some kind. So you might set a KPI of "Achieve a top 5 Google search ranking for 80% of the most common strategy search terms."

Right away when you kick-off your strategic planning process, you'll be able to assess:

  • Did we meet our KPI?
  • Why did we fall short?
  • Was this even the right KPI?

That last point is critical - but more on that a little later.

Step 2- Implement consistent processes and tools

Not to sound too much like a broken record, but effective strategy evaluation requires planning that goes beyond the setting of good KPIs. You'll also need to plan out your 'strategy rhythm' - things like:

  • How often will I measure progress against my goals?
  • What standardized set of reports will be used throughout my business?
  • What level of detail shall we capture in our written commentary of progress against the plan?

This is of course where a platform like Cascade can really shine through in terms of value. Even if you're going old-school with your strategy evaluations, you'll want to determine these types of things upfront.

Then, implement a regime of meetings and reports throughout the organization to match. We like to call this process your ' strategy rhythm '. As it should form the backbone of your organization's activities, and be maintained regularly and consistently throughout the year.

Step 3- Empower teams to evaluate their own strategies

Empowerment plays a critical role in strategy execution regardless. However, it's especially important as part of the strategy evaluation process. Rather than have the leadership team alone participate in your strategy evaluation, invite a team from each functional area.

Each team should prepare their own evaluation of how they think their area performed against the strategy. There are a number of benefits of doing so:

  • You'll have the opportunity to assess your team's understanding of the strategy. Does it match your own?
  • Your team will realize how seriously you take the process of strategy and value it more as part of their day-to-day roles.
  • You'll gain additional insights that you wouldn't have thought of yourself.

You'll want to provide them with a basic framework to perform the analysis, and have them answer the key questions we posed above:

  • Did we meet our goals?
  • What was it that helped us to succeed?
  • What challenges made us fall short?
  • Were our goals well set, and have they brought us closer to achieving our overall vision?

Ideally, you'll have your team present using the tools you gave them as part of step 2. This includes any strategic dashboards or standardized reports that you set up in the planning stage.

Step 4- Take corrective action

Steps 4 and 5 (below) are somewhat intertwined and should be performed largely in conjunction with each other. If you find that you're not meeting one of your goals, you'll want to do two things:

  • Start by figuring out if the goal is still the right one (see below).
  • If it is, take corrective action to address any shortcomings.

Assuming you're still convinced the goal you've set is the right one, you need to implement an action plan to get yourself back on track.

There are many reasons why you might be struggling to hit your goals, ranging from relatively simple issues such as:

  • A lack of resourcing (human or financial)
  • Conflicting priorities
  • Ineffective tracking of targets
  • Misalignment or understanding of the goal

Or your challenges may be more complex and relate to:

  • Increased competition
  • A significant capital shortfall
  • Regulatory pressures
  • A lack of internal innovation

Whatever the case, the sooner you can identify these issues, the sooner you can start to take corrective action. This once again highlights the importance of a robust strategy evaluation process.

Step 5- Iterate your plan

There are two scenarios where you'll want to iterate your plan as part of your strategy evaluation - one being significantly more positive than the other:

Strategy evaluation example 1: You've achieved your goals

In an ideal world, you'll be iterating because you met some or all of your strategic goals. Remember, your plan is a living, breathing entity and may evolve in irregular and unexpected ways.

Specifically, you'll find yourself hitting some goals far earlier than you expected and you'll need to replace those goals with new ones,  without waiting for all elements of the plan to be completed.

It's actually not that hard to do this, as long as you have a robust strategy evaluation routine:

You've achieved all your goals. Great - have you therefore achieved your focus area? No? Then you need more goals within that focus area.

You've achieved all your focus areas. Great - have you therefore achieved your vision? No? Then you need new focus areas.

The best strategies are the ones that never truly end, but are instead agile to the needs of the business with the focus areas constantly changing, whilst always being guided by the overall vision.

Strategy evaluation example 2: You've failed to meet some of your goals

This is where we continue directly from the start of step 4 above. Just because you failed to meet a goal, don't actually assume that the right thing to do is to take corrective action.

One of the most common outcomes of effective strategy evaluations is the redefinition of KPIs.

Cast your mind back to our example at the top of this article. Let's say that you did in fact meet your KPI around Google search rankings, and yet despite that, found no significant uptick in the number of people starting free trials of your software.

In that case, it's likely that the KPI you set was incorrect. But you wouldn't have known that without either the KPI in the first place or the process of strategic evaluation.

You need to find a balance between not being afraid to redefine your goals, versus constantly changing them without ever really achieving anything. Failure to find this balance is one of the main reasons why so many strategies fail.

Step 6- Celebrate successes

We've saved the most fun part of the strategy evaluation process for last - celebrating success. We're written previously on the importance of celebrating success to drive engagement in your strategy. The strategy evaluation process is the time to implement those celebrations.

Given that your strategy will never ‘finish’ – it’s important to celebrate the successes along the way. The first time you achieve a KPI or even focus areas - enjoy it!

Don't do so privately, but rather share that success with the entire organization. Whether it’s a simple email of thanks or a full-blown party, the fact that you’re so notably celebrating the success of a strategic goal is not only great for morale, but it also sends a strong message that the execution of the plan  really really matters .

Strategy Evaluation Framework Example

To help you get started with your own strategy evaluation process, take a look at how our Customer Success team here at Cascade handled it for an example strategic marketing plan.

First, they looked back on the strategy for the year and updated each of the goals to show which ones were completed and which weren't...

The Focus Areas they evaluated were: Performance, Cyber Risk, and Digital. With this in mind, they then proposed a survey be conducted within the team to ask how each person thought they performed against these Focus Areas...

Finally, once they'd finished the strategic evaluation, they started work on the new strategic plan...

what is strategy evaluation

Don't Be Afraid of Strategy Evaluation

What is the central purpose of strategic evaluation? So often organizations shy away from the process of evaluating their strategy because they're scared of uncovering the depth of their 'failure'. But strategy is hard - and you're not meant to ever deliver against it 100%.

Business strategy is not that different from life. It's not so much about success or failure - rather it's about continual improvement and self-awareness. That's why strategy evaluation is so important to your continued growth as an organization.

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Home » Evaluations » Thematic Evaluations » Evaluation of UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021

Evaluation of UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021

This evaluation provides an assessment of UNDP’s vision set out in the Strategic Plan 2018-2021, and the extent to which the enablers and changes introduced to operationalize it are helping to improve UNDP’s support for fulfilment of the Sustainable Development Goals and helping the organization to adapt and respond to changes in context.

The evaluation comes at a time when UNDP is also having to significantly adapt its efforts to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the challenging context, UNDP has made relevant contributions to development results within three broad development settings; was swift to adapt its capabilities to support UN development system reform and signature solutions stipulated in the Strategic Plan; and sustained a stable influx of resources with agile mobilization and repurposing of funds to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. UNDP has made concerted efforts to promote collaborative partnerships to support and finance the Goals; to more systemically integrate approaches for more balanced consideration of economic, social and environmental dimensions; and to mainstream the ‘leave no one behind’ principle. UNDP has made good progress improving its management and operations and showing determination to be a more client-oriented operational services provider with commitment to improving people management, learning and development; streamlining processes and procedures; and expanding investments in digital and technological innovation.

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Program evaluations should be planned strategically, rather than on an ad hoc basis. Strategic evaluation planning means that the evaluation activity first considers what evidence is needed to inform decision making, and what questions need to be answered to help the organization obtain the evidence to improve the way it does business.

Focusing on evidence needed, questions to be answered, and decisions to be made is an important first step toward strategically planning evaluations.

One way to have useful and cost-effective evaluations is to strategically plan evaluation activity so it supports management activity cycles for planning, budgeting, analysis, program implementation, and benefits reporting and communication.

In this way, evaluations generate information to feed into critical decision processes and continuous improvement. Planning evaluations strategically allows the program to phase in a full range of evaluation activities over a period of years, and to spread out the cost of evaluation over multiple years.

A Strategic Evaluation Plan (also referred to as a Learning Agenda or Evidence-Building Plan) is seen as a living document that can be modified as the program evolves and changes over time.

  • Program evaluation information
  • Performance monitoring and analysis findings
  • Foundational fact-finding information (e.g., indicators, descriptive statistics). 

Taking a strategic view of evaluation means that you need to do the following:

  • First, consider for your office or program what information is needed to provide evidence to support decision making (see  Informed Decisions ), and
  • Develop an overall strategy and lay out a plan for collecting and analyzing data that will generate the information needed.

First, Consider Your Program's Decision Information Needs and Questions

Since the idea is to have all evaluative information working together, you might start by taking stock of your decision needs and questions that need to be addressed to obtain information necessary to support those decisions.

The illustrative table below is one way to begin to take stock of these considerations. Complete the second and third columns and decide what program areas require management attention and need to be evaluated (third column).

For your program, fill in the cells (with details on known decision points, timing needs, expected key audiences, type of evaluation, etc.) for the program areas for which you will need evaluation information to inform critical decisions.

Second, Develop an Overall Evaluation Strategy that Includes Use of Results

Ideally, an EERE Office should have an overall evaluation strategy and supporting multi-year evaluation plan that addresses each critical program area, including a schedule for the planned evaluation activities and the resources set aside for them.

A mix of  evaluation types  may be necessary. For instance, the decision information needs for R&D programs might require several different types of evaluation be performed over a multi-year period, going beyond peer reviews alone.

A Learning Agenda approach (illustrated below) could guide the effort to develop an evaluation plan that would be prepared strategically. 

Diagram of a Learning Agenda Framework, which involves identifying prioritized questions, formulating metrics that answer questions, developing methods and data collection, evaluation studies, producing results, and using results.

(1) Formulate Prioritized Questions

After you have clarified the decisions to be informed and generally understand the evidence needed to inform the decisions, establish your program's prioritized questions that when answered will help inform the decisions.

Developing program logic models can be especially useful here. These help capture goals in a concise way and show how these goals will be achieved, thus highlighting key evaluation questions, as well as performance metrics.

The questions developed can be prioritized based on the organization/ office strategic goals and priorities. In this way, the questions will be aligned with organizational mission and operational priorities. As evaluation funding resources may be limited, you might have to focus on the top prioritized questions.

(2) Define and Execute Evaluation Activities

Try to identify the information/evidence gaps. Formulate a set of prioritized questions that must be answered to provide the evidence to inform decisions.

  • Concentrate evaluation activities on areas in your program strategy where there are gaps in information/evidence needed to inform decisions.
  • Surveys of probability sample populations
  • Measurement and evaluation (M&V)
  • Semi-structured interviews
  • Expert elicitation
  • Database mining
  • Use of administrative data
  • Evaluation research designs (e.g., Randomized Control Trials, Quasi-experimental, counterfactual analysis techniques)
  • Statistical analysis
  • Text analytics
  • Regression discontinuity analysis
  • Cluster analysis
  • Discounted cash flow valuation method to estimate the economic value of an investment
  • Mixed method analysis techniques
  • Case study approach

(3) Produce and Disseminate the Results of the Evaluations Activity(ies)

Disseminating results/ findings from an evaluation activity could include publishing reports and making them publicly available; giving briefings to key stakeholders; preparing Infographics, and so on. Whatever the form of the communication, it must be tailored to stakeholders at the level of detail suitable to them to ensure that the communication would be consumed.

(4) Use the Results to Fill Evidence Gaps and Inform Decision Making

Results/findings should then be used to help inform decisions , such as:

  • Decisions to make program improvements (e.g., modifications, redesign)
  • Decisions to revise program goals and strategy
  • Resource allocation decisions
  • Decisions to communicate program strategy and value
  • Operational decisions

Here is a simplified example of the Learning Agenda process, as it applies to an illustrative question:

Tips for Successful Strategically Planned Evaluations

  • Plan for high quality, cost-effective evaluations
  • Evaluation studies often take six months or more to complete and a schedule helps ensure that all program elements are assessed on a time scale that will provide information timely for decision points.
  • Avoid the trap of unnecessarily limiting or constraining the scope of an evaluation study to meet a compressed time schedule. For example, in some cases, results from an evaluation may have to become available every other budget cycle if an in-depth scope of investigation is called for.
  • Put in place standard procedures for gathering and validating as much data as possible as a routine part of program record-keeping.
  • Combine efforts where you can. For example, do customer satisfaction surveys for all program customers at one time.
  • Set aside budget resources for evaluation, including an amount for studies that cannot be predicted. In many Federal government agencies, evaluation activity typically comprises 1% to 10% of a program's budget.
  • Establish a procedure to ensure the independence of the evaluation process.
  • Have a quality assurance process in place that calls for external review of the study evaluation plan and the draft report and ensures data quality and consistency (especially when evaluation data comes from multiple sources).

The importance of knowing how to evaluate a strategic plan

sample strategic plan evaluation report

Now that you know more precisely what strategic planning is and what it is for – with the help of Peter Drucker’s ideas – let’s take a look at some strategic planning objectives.

3 main objectives of strategic planning

Below are the main objectives and benefits of monitoring your organization’s strategic plan:

1- Ensuring that activities are being performed within the defined parameters

During the development of strategic planning, for each activity planned for the organization, necessary parameters for their accomplishment are considered.

Costs, execution time, financial, material and human resources needed, among others.

Now, while the plan is being put in place, the manager must make sure that all activities are being carried out within the proper parameters.

Rather than assessing, the manager must look at whether a change of course is required, and whether the parameters for any activity need to be rethought.

Ensuring activity progress helps set performance standards that indicate progress towards long-term goals, assesses people’s performance, and provides input for feedback.

2- Ensuring activities are consistent with company DNA

The soul of the organization is closely linked to its vision, mission and values.

Monitoring strategic planning is also a way to ensure that activities are being developed in accordance with the values that guide the organization and its organizational culture.

Since they are directly related to the organizational climate and the corporate image of the company.

Check out this unique Siteware infographic that shows the consequences of a misaligned organizational culture of strategic planning:

info iceberg The importance of knowing how to evaluate a strategic plan

3- Assessing ability to achieve goals and identify problems

Analyzing both the internal and external workforce and the exchange of ideas is also important in measuring how well a company is able to achieve what was set for the period.

By comparing performance data with established standards, it is possible to visualize or anticipate possible bottlenecks in corporate daily life.

Why is monitoring strategic planning important?

When a company monitors its strategic planning closely, it ensures that its teams are doing a good job, committed to maintaining progress, and with proper records so they can be evaluated.

Here is another quote from a master, Ram Charan , to illustrate how monitoring strategic planning is critical.

“ 70% of strategies fail due to ineffectiveness. They rarely fail due to lack of intelligence or vision.”

That is, at the time of executing the plan, it is crucial to carry out strategic monitoring and evaluation of the planning systematically and constantly.

After all, if 70% of planning activities fail in execution, only strategic planning control and evaluation – with metrics – will allow errors to be detected and adjustments made.

The metrics a company uses to measure also indicate the quality of the year or period the company is in.

If necessary, from what is evaluated, it is possible to correct the current path, make investments, hire staff, seek technological tools, build partnerships, among many other solutions.

Monitoring is part of the strategic planning system primarily to keep track of what is happening.

And this is usually done through an analysis of regular operational and financial reports on a company’s activities.

The results of a strategic planning follow-up are:

  • Incentive for continuous improvement;
  • Provision of data on the impact of activities;
  • Information for decision making.

The monitoring of strategic planning should be carried out based on the same indicators used when preparing strategic planning.

This also allows for process review as the company realizes that activities, internal and external relationships, customer approaches, etc. need to be modified.

Is it clear to you how important strategic planning and the control of action plans and activities are?

Examples of strategic planning indicators

You have seen that there is no way to monitor strategic planning without the use of indicators.

There are actually three types of indicators to consider in a company:

  • Strategic Indicators:  They point to the future, the path the company is expected to follow, and are linked to the mission and vision of the business. They will be reached in the long term, between 3 and 5 years. After an analysis of internal and external scenarios and company differentials, with the help of SWOT analysis, strategic indicators are usually defined.
  • Tactical Indicators:  are related to the actions of each area of the company. They make up an action plan that is effective in a shorter period than the strategic objectives, but should contribute to it. If tactical indicators are being met, there is a good chance that strategic objectives will also be met successfully.
  • Operational Indicators:  short term. They are directly linked to the day-to-day operations in a company and the progress of the processes. Operational indicators are assigned to each employee to achieve the desired performance level that will make it possible to achieve tactical and strategic goals.

How do you define strategic planning indicators, anyway?

We have seen in the paragraphs above that strategic indicators have the following characteristics:

  • Point to the future
  • Achieved in the long term
  • Linked to a company’s mission and vision
  • Based on competitive differences

So, for example, it would make no sense to define strategic indicators like the following:

  • Improve the efficiency of our production line by 15% next year.
  • Increase sales by 10% by the end of June
  • Hire new talent to fill 6 positions on the board by year’s end

These are typical examples of tactical indicators.

To get examples of strategic planning indicators, one must think of changes more linked to the company’s DNA, its mission to society.

Here is a short list of examples of strategic planning indicators:

  • Launch 3 new product lines each year over the next 4 years to gain 35% more Share in Market X.
  • Create a corporate university that meets our needs within a maximum of 2 years and institute university study support plans to enable our employees to have 85% of the workforce with a college degree and 50% with a postgraduate degree. 5 years.
  • Deactivate business units with less than 20% profitability and use the proceeds from the sale of these assets to start an international expansion project by opening 1 unit in countries X, Y and Z and 3 units in country W within 4 years.

Challenges of following strategic planning

Now that it’s clear to you how to evaluate a strategic plan, let’s look at the challenges inherent in doing it.

If we consider that strategic planning is the consolidation of ideas, it is in the implementation of these ideas that the organization will obtain its results, as Charan pointed out.

That’s why it needs to be constantly reevaluated and rethought as corporate progresses.

The biggest challenge of strategic management is related to the ability to move the organization and keep it connected with what was proposed by the strategic plan, with the adaptability that this process requires.

Like every management function, this presupposes a permanent dynamic of planning, execution, monitoring, evaluation, adjustments and readjustments.

And if you want to know how to evaluate a strategic plan even more quickly and assertively, check out STRATWs One strategic planning software.

It enables a friendly view of your strategy map, making it easy to track indicators and goals and creating action plans for each one.

It makes it much easier to understand how to evaluate a strategic plan and monitor internal activities.

Revolutionize the management of your company with STRATWs One

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Evaluation and Assessment

Michigan Creative, Diane Tochman

To ensure accountability and transparency and to support evidence-based decision making, the U-M Five-Year DEI Strategic Plan calls for systems to track metrics assessing progress towards stated strategic objectives.

These strategic objectives reflect campuswide efforts to increase diversity in myriad forms, offer equity for all, and ensure a vibrant culture of inclusiveness. The qualitative and quantitative data yielded year over year will be used as a basis for decisions on programming and resource allocation to achieve and sustain desired outcomes.

Progress is communicated regularly across campus through multiple channels, with opportunities to engage in discussion and continued planning to build on our efforts over time.

Tracking and reporting occurs at university, school, college and unit levels. Progress on plan-related action steps such as implementation and participation in programs, utilization of services, and awareness of DEI are tracked on an annual basis.

Longer-term measures being tracked over time include the demographic composition of our campus, shifts in climate and indicators of equity across populations.

The U-M Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI) leads and provides primary support for evaluation and assessment of the U-M DEI Strategic Plan implementation.

ODEI leads DEI data development efforts for our large, decentralized campus. As a central entity on campus, ODEI is developing an institutional domain to conduct DEI evaluation and assessment and to archive this data for reference and re-use.

Our work in evaluation and assessment of our DEI Strategic Plan implementation is guided by the following goals:

  • Evidence: Strengthen evidence base for informed decision-making, not only for what we want to hear, but what we don’t know and what we are missing, and for what our community thinks and feels. Evidence will garner influence to create action.
  • Influence: Translate and disseminate policy-relevant and decision-relevant research and data to key groups and decision-makers to inform and guide the infusion of DEI into the fabric of our institution.
  • Action: Design and implement best research practices to achieve impact and goals.
  • Transparency: Communicate about what we are doing and how we are doing it in a transparent way, so that others trust that we are being objective and accurate with the way that data is collected, prepared and shared. This supports accountability for the work we are doing.

Audience and Collaborators

All U-M students, staff and faculty and all campus units stand to benefit from the DEI evaluation and assessment work that results from and drives our DEI Strategic Planning and Implementation process.

DEI Leads in participating campus units are a specific audience in terms of the central reporting process and for unit-based metrics and climate survey reports produced centrally.

At the Unit level, evaluation and assessment is essential for data-driven decision making. Executive Officers, Deans and Directors are another key audience in terms of their need to access and use relevant data and reports in the context of their work both internal and external to the institution.

To effectively conduct evaluation and assessment related to the DEI Strategic Plan implementation, the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI) collaborates with multiple campus offices, including the Office of Budget & Planning, the Institute for Social Research (ISR), U-M Human Resources (UMHR), and Information Technology Services (ITS).

For example, to conduct a campus climate survey, we consulted with ISR and coordinated with OBP, UMHR and ITS on specific aspects of the project. Meanwhile, we partnered with an external survey research vendor to conduct our campus climate survey, providing an additional layer of assurance for the confidentiality of survey responses and data handling.

As you plan for evaluation and assessment of your campus DEI efforts, then, determine key audiences and stakeholders who will help gather or provide feedback and data, who will have a vested interest in seeing progress documented in different areas, and who will utilize the results to inform decisions and future plans.

In addition, take stock of your organizational structure, resources, and goals. Identify different entities on campus involved with data, evaluation and assessment, data systems, reporting and research administration to determine your points of contact and collaboration.

Planning and Implementation

The year prior to the 2016 launch of the DEI Strategic Plan began with an assessment and community engagement phase.

During this time, students, staff and faculty across the campus participated in more than 200 community engagement events, including campuswide activities and many events hosted by schools, colleges and units.

Participants contributed ideas and feedback, which were used along with other existing diversity, equity and inclusion-related data to inform the unit plans.

At the conclusion of the 2015-16 academic year, participating campus units had articulated their DEI Strategic Plans, and building on these plans, the central level plan was established as well.

This initial assessment and planning period is essential in that it involves many people – not just a few high-level administrators – in evaluating needs and priorities.

As part of the central campus plan, we confirmed the following set of metrics to help build accountability against goals for diversity, equity and inclusion.

These metrics will be tracked and will be assessed at the end of the five-year implementation period. We anticipate continued tracking and effort on these and other metrics beyond the current strategic planning window.

Initial Categories of Metrics for Continued Tracking:

Progress on plan action steps and initiatives:.

  • Activity toward implementing initiatives
  • Participation rates
  • Action-specific outcomes (e.g . learning outcomes f rom training, etc.) 

Demographic diversity:

  • Undergraduate students —Demographic composition (e.g., race/ethnicity, sex), enrollment status (class level, entry status), 4- and 6-year graduation rates
  • Graduate students — Demographic composition (e.g., race/ethnicity, sex), degree level (masters, doctoral, professional)
  • Faculty — Demographic composition (e.g., race/ethnicity, sex, age), tenure status or job family 
  • Staff — Demographic composition (e.g., race/ ethnicity, sex, age)

Climate indicators: 

  • Student, faculty and staff 12-month satisfaction with the overall campus or school/ college or unit climate/environment, depending on constituency 
  • Student, faculty and staff assessment of aspects of the general climate and DEI climate of overall campus or school/college or unit, depending on constituency
  • Student, faculty and staff assessment of institutional commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion 
  • Student, faculty and staff feelings of sense of affirmation and academic or professional growth, depending on constituency 
  • Student, faculty and staff feelings of discrimination in the prior 12 months

To plan and implement our DEI Strategic Plan evaluation and assessment efforts, the U-M Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI) involves multiple professional staff members and collaborates with key campus offices.

Essential to this work is a dedicated, full-time research analyst, whose primary responsibilities include providing services in collecting, discovering, cataloging, manipulating, and transforming data as well as consulting on the proper use of data.

Other responsibilities include developing reports, making presentations and providing training on the use, cataloging, and manipulation of data to University staff and other constituents, as needed.

The core activities we have engaged as part of our program of evaluation and assessment include:

Campuswide climate surveys:.

As our process of implementation began, we conducted a comprehensive evaluation of each unit, aggregated campuswide, with respect to:

  • How diverse unit/campus is as a community
  • The degree to which individuals experience the unit/University as inclusive
  • Whether individuals have equitable opportunities to be successful

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) Metrics Reports and Dashboard:

Reports are generated from this dashboard and provided annually to campus units.

As the DEI Strategic Plan implementation unfolded, a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Metrics (DEI Metrics) Dashboard was developed through a collaborative effort between the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Office of Budget and Planning, and Information and Technology Services.

DEI Metrics will track and report on shifts up or down, trends, and other indicators representing progress and outcomes that enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion on campus (see list of metrics being tracked in the planning segment of this guide). At regular intervals, the campus community will be updated on DEI Metrics results at the university as well as the School, College, and unit levels. 

Reporting and Assessment of Annual Progress:

We work to demonstrate accountability in terms of progress toward unit and campuswide goals, while identifying new opportunities and challenges to provide a basis for informed decision-making. Essential steps in an annual progress and reporting process include: 

  • Gather data on progress towards unit DEI Plan goals and actions to enhance diversity, equity and inclusion along with the specified timetables for execution
  • Include unit-level DEI assessment data as part of unit plan among implementation domains (as applicable): retention, recruitment, and development; inclusive climate; education and innovative scholarship; research or scholarly activity; and service or community engagement.
  • Provide a memorandum to each unit involved including a progress assessment that provides feedback, identifies strengths and suggests areas for further attention.
  • Issue overall campuswide progress report. This could be a formal report, an interactive website, a set of infographics, or other formats and approaches. At U-M, we use all three of these approaches to help communicate our DEI Progress, as well as video-based stories of progress and impact, and access to a searchable dataset of DEI actions and completion status across all unit DEI Strategic Plans.

Revising DEI Plans Based on Reporting and Feedback Efforts:

Each year we engage our DEI Leads across all units to review and update DEI Strategic Plans and in doing so, to reflect, examine, and learn from the outcomes of research and assessment efforts (i.e., climate survey reports, DEI metrics reports, annual reporting assessment memorandum).

Data Development, Stewardship, and Support of Institutional Research:

We have developed and continue to maintain relationships, partnerships, and collaborations with key stakeholders, improve our workflow with data, documentation and communication, and continue to design and implement best research practices.

Education, Training, and Oversight:

We uphold high standards for research and data sharing. This involves participation in research oversight administered by the campus IRB (Institutional Review Board) to protect human subjects, and as appropriate, to prompt participation in the campus P rogram for Education and Evaluation in Responsible Research and Scholarship (PEERS), the university’s online resource providing regulatory and responsible conduct of research (RCR) training courses for employees and students.

Evaluation and Impact

Even our evaluation and assessment process needs to be evaluated! Our collaborative approach led to many inputs from multiple groups – including faculty, staff and students – regarding decisions about climate surveys, key metrics and annual progress reporting.

ODEI continues to seek feedback makes adjustments in the content and process of our DEI evaluation and assessment efforts. We continue to strive for transparency and accountability with our work to document and communicate progress in our DEI Strategic Plan implementation.

Here are just a few of the many ways we have used feedback to inform decisions and changes in our evaluation and assessment work:

  • Input from DEI Leads informs annual updates to the DEI Strategic Plan Progress reporting tool and process which has made reporting more efficient and effective.
  • Community input led to a decision to use a third-party vendor to conduct our campuswide climate survey for additional assurance of confidentiality.
  • Feedback from students led us to create a set of infographics as well as an interactive digital progress update to better communicate about progress in key areas and initiatives.

Expert Advice

  • Include planning for evaluation and assessment as you develop your DEI Strategic Plan; this is a critical function that is essential to the process and outcomes of your efforts.
  • Engage multiple stakeholders, experts and constituents in your planning and decision-making with regards to evaluation and assessment.
  • Build evaluation and assessment into your budget, including – and especially – for experienced, professional staffing that will enable you to conduct strong, effective, and sound practices with regards to evaluation and assessment.
  • Ensure that you are following best practices in the collection, reporting, storage, sharing, and re-use of data; again it is key to involve data experts to guide this work.
  • Ensure that your process complies with federal, state and local law and/or university policies or agreements that require the university to implement specific privacy and security safeguards (i.e., ITAR, EAR, HIPAA, FISMA).
  • Communicate with your campus about how you are conducting evaluation and assessment as well as about the results of your evaluation and assessment.
  • Be willing to share about areas that are not progressing as planned or that need additional attention; this transparency is important in terms of building trust and being authentic in this work.

Additional Resources

  • UM Campus Climate Survey (Campuswide and Sampling Surveys)
  • ICPSR 2016 U-M Campus Climate Survey Archive Data
  • U-M DEI Progress Reports
  • Database of Campuswide DEI Actions and Completion Status

Return to DEI Strategic Planning Toolkit Homepage

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  • Office of DEI
  • Feedback Form
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  • DEI E-Mail List Sign Up
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Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Ruthven Building 1109 Geddes Avenue, Suite 4300 Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1340

© 2023 The Regents of the University of Michigan

How to Write a Strategy Report? A Step-By-Step Guide for Marketers

sample strategic plan evaluation report

A blank page can look terrifying.

You make yourself a cup of nice, hot coffee, sit in your comfy chair, and open a new document, but… Your strategy report won’t write itself.

And when you have no idea where to start or how to make your report look professional, neat, and above all, compelling, minutes may go by without you writing a single word.

But what if we told you things didn’t need to be that hard? That you could write exceptional strategy reports by following a simple guide encompassing both the report’s structure and contents?

That’s exactly what we’re about to share with you! Without further ado, let’s get started.

What Is a Strategy Report?

What does a strategic report contain, how do you structure a strategy report, how to write a strategy report in 8 steps.


Writing a strategic report can be crucial for your business growth.

In this type of report, you look at your strategy (either overall business strategy or by department – marketing, financial, etc.) and analyze its performance over a specific time period – usually monthly or annually.

When writing a marketing strategy report, you typically take a look at the results of different activities and plans you’ve implemented, and compare your current status to the goals you’ve set before a specific time period. You may also compare your current results to the last year’s figures, so you can see where you stand and evaluate your progress, or the overall business goals of the company.

A strategy report also presents possible action plans for the future, based on the performance analysis.

Based on your strategy report, you can determine what changes you want to introduce, what elements of the strategy you want to keep and replicate, and what activities turned out to be unsuccessful.

Some experts separate the contents of their strategy reports into three categories that answer the three primary questions about their business, or in this case, marketing strategy:

  • Where are we at the moment?
  • Where do we want to go?
  • How can we get there?

These questions are actually a good illustration of any strategy. You have a starting point, at which you want to revisit your goals, mission, and vision of the business you want to have in the future. If there have been any changes to these, you should redefine them in the strategy report.

While looking at your current situation, it’s also a good idea to perform a SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) and bear them in mind while writing the report.

You also have a set of goals you want to achieve. To get there, you need to have a strategy. It’s a well-defined plan with clear, actionable steps that you can take (and measure in the process) to get to your marketing goal. It’s essential that the activities you complete can be measured because that’s how you track your progress and improve your strategy over time.

While building your path towards your goals, you should be aware of your competition, as well. Do you have a sustainable advantage that helps you stand out from your competitors? In what ways can you make it even better, or at least maintain it? Your unique selling point is something you should nurture to stay competitive.

Don’t neglect your short-term goals, either. Every great goal can be broken down into smaller objectives and everyday completions of these smaller goals eventually lead to bigger progress towards the greater business goals. Where you see yourself tomorrow is just as important as where you see yourself in ten years.

PRO TIP: How Well Are Your Marketing KPIs Performing?

Like most marketers and marketing managers, you want to know how your efforts are translating into results each month. How is your website performing? How well are you converting traffic into leads and customers? Which marketing channels are performing best? How does organic search compare to paid campaigns and to previous months? You might have to scramble to put all of this together in a single report, but now you can have it all at your fingertips in a single Databox dashboard.

Our Monthly Marketing Performance Dashboard includes data from Google Analytics 4 and HubSpot Marketing with key performance metrics like:

  • Website sessions, new users, and new leads. Basic engagement data from your website. How much traffic? How many new visitors? How many lead conversions?
  • Lead generation vs goal. Did you reach your goal for lead conversion for the month, quarter, or year? If not, by how much did you miss?  
  • Overall marketing performance . A summary list of the main KPIs for your website: sessions, contacts, leads, customers, bounce rate, avg. session duration, pages/session, and pageviews.
  • Email response . Overall, how effective were your email campaigns, measured by email opens?
  • Blog post traffic . How much traffic did your blog attract during a certain period?
  • New contacts by source. Which sources drove the highest number of new contacts 
  • Visits and contacts by source. How did your sources compare by both sessions and new contacts in a certain period of time?

Now you can benefit from the experience of our Google Analytics and HubSpot Marketing experts, who have put together a plug-and-play Databox template that contains all the essential metrics for monitoring and analyzing your website traffic and its sources, lead generation, and more. It’s simple to implement and start using as a standalone dashboard or in marketing reports, and best of all, it’s free!


You can easily set it up in just a few clicks – no coding required.

To set up the dashboard, follow these 3 simple steps:

Step 1: Get the template 

Step 2: Connect your HubSpot and Google Analytics 4 accounts with Databox. 

Step 3: Watch your dashboard populate in seconds.

A good strategy report usually covers the following primary areas:


Defining any strategy starts with defining your goals. You don’t know what to do until you know what you want to achieve. That’s why a strategic report needs to include strategic objectives – your long-term marketing goals that help you accomplish your vision.

To determine your goals, you should think about what your mission is and how it connects to your vision. How will your marketing strategy help you achieve your vision and carry out your mission? The goals you set should be aligned with your overall business objectives.

You can only measure your progress towards your goals if you determine what your KPIs are going to be. Look at the list of your goals and think about how you’re going to measure your success. For example, if your goal is to provide an exceptional customer experience, you may want to track your customer retention rate or repeated purchases.

Including your KPIs in the strategy report will help you evaluate the success of the strategy and determine which areas were the strongest, and which ones didn’t meet the expectations.

A marketing strategy report should also highlight the issues that you may have encountered while executing it. Maybe you had wrong assumptions about your target audience, or your ads didn’t perform as well as you’d expected.

Obstacles and issues are not something that should be excluded from the report just because it doesn’t feel pleasant to talk about them. They’re actually a great opportunity to learn and work on the strategy to improve it – identify its weak points so you can fix them in the future.

Just looking back on your performance doesn’t have much use if you don’t act on the data you’ve collected. Some hiccups in your strategy will have a solution, and your report is a good place for you to give your recommendations.

Devote a section of the report to your suggestions on how you could tackle the issues that may have appeared in the strategy performance analysis.

With these sections in mind, you could structure your strategy report the following way:

  • Present the current state of your marketing department (the “Where are we at the moment?” question) – in this section, you will discuss where you stand with your mission, strengths and weaknesses, competitors, etc.
  • Describe the desired future state (the “Where do we want to go?” question) – in this section, you include your vision statement and strategic objectives, high-level goals, etc.
  • Discuss your marketing strategy (the “How do we get there?” question) – in this section, analyze briefly the performance of your current strategy and discuss your progress towards your goals, explain issues, define priorities, etc.
  • Give recommendations and create an actionable plan that will help you bridge the gap between where you are now and where you’re aspiring to be.

There are many strategy report models out there. Make sure the one you choose is flexible, scalable, and effective without being too complicated. Sometimes, you’ll need to adjust your strategic plan as you go. Here’s a simple marketing strategy report model you can easily follow.

  • Write a Title and Introduction
  • Include Your Mission Statement and Core Values
  • Analyze the Market: Your Industry and Main Competitors
  • Define Your SMART Goals
  • Define Your Strategic Priorities
  • Determine Your KPIs
  • Determine What You Need to Do to Achieve the Goals
  • Include an Executive Summary

1. Write a Title and Introduction

Start with a proper title. A strategic report may be a more serious document than a blog post, but it doesn’t mean that it can’t have an engaging title. (After all, you’re a marketer, aren’t you?) It can be longer than a few words, so you can try to encompass your goals or results with it.

The introductory part of the report should identify the subject of the report in a brief paragraph, explain its purpose, and what methodology and tools you used to compile the report.

2. Include Your Mission Statement and Core Values

Your mission should be stated at the beginning of the report. Through presenting the core values of your business and your “why”, you’ll be able to tell a story about your brand, which makes the report more readable.

Also, you’re giving the reader a background of your business before you introduce the strategy part and making a connection between the whole picture of your business and the marketing department and strategy.

Don’t forget to state your vision, as well. It’s important because you’ll also talk about your strategic goals later on in the report.

3. Analyze the Market: Your Industry and Main Competitors

A part of your report should cover market analysis and an overview of your main competition. You can include the SWOT analysis here as you’re defining your unique selling point and comparing yourself to your competitors. Review your strengths and weaknesses, skills, and areas of improvement, and consider different internal and external factors that may affect your strategy and its success.

This analysis helps you understand where you stand now and what you’ve achieved so far. Then, you can proceed to outline a plan on how you’re going to get to where you see your company in the future.

4. Define Your SMART Goals

Tracing your steps back from your goals helps you learn exactly what you need to do to reach your objectives.

Use the SMART goals technique at this point to define your goals as clearly as possible. This acronym stands for specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely. It means you need to set precisely defined goals that you really can achieve within a certain time period and that you have a way to measure if you were successful. SMART goals can enhance your actionable strategic plan and help you stay on the right track while implementing it.  

5. Define Your Strategic Priorities

Some goals will be more important than others. Use your strategy report to describe your main projects, the ones that reflect your strategic goals . Include the following: what their goals are, how you’re going to achieve them, what tools and resources you need, what outcome you’re hoping for, etc. By determining what your priorities are, you enable yourself to choose and define the right KPIs to measure, too.

6. Determine Your KPIs

Many companies have a problem with defining business KPIs that are aligned with their strategic priorities and truly measure their progress towards the goals they’ve set. Each business should have primary and secondary KPIs that they’ll track on a company level and for each department. Only include the most relevant KPIs in your report – otherwise, it’ll look confusing and the reader won’t know which ones really matter.

7. Determine What You Need to Do to Achieve the Goals

Not acting on your goals and the data you’ve collected by tracking your KPIs is one of the biggest mistakes companies make . That’s why this section of your strategy report is particularly important. After you’ve reviewed your current position and defined your goals for the future, it’s time to develop an actionable step-by-step plan on how you’re going to progress. This plan consists of your projects, that also need to be defined clearly by answering these:

  • Who is participating (project manager and other assignees)?
  • What is the deadline?
  • What is the project goal?
  • What resources do you need?
  • What methodology will you use?
  • How and where will you communicate with supervisors/clients?
  • How will you deliver the project? (etc.)

8. Include an Executive Summary

Finally, write a one-page executive summary of your report. It’s recommended to write this section at the end, although it’s typically included at the beginning of the report. However, only when you finish the report will you be able to see the whole picture and write an effective summary that will encompass all the relevant sections and takeaways from the report.

Create Convincing Strategy Reports with Databox

Does writing a marketing strategy report sound like a time-consuming task?

Well, despite its importance, we can’t deny that it takes time to write a good one. You may not always have enough time to focus on writing a quality strategic report that will amaze your clients or managers. But you don’t want to throw something together in five minutes either, because you know it’ll affect the way people perceive your plan.

So, is there a way to create a visually beautiful report without spending hours putting it together? To save your time so you can focus on the core aspects of your job?

Thanks to Databox, there is.

In fact, it only takes 24 hours to get a customized dashboard that’s ideal for your marketing strategy. This dashboard allows you to analyze your strategy performance and learn exactly what you can do to improve it. Moreover, we help you identify the right KPIs to track and visualize them in an effective way that makes them actionable and accessible. You get valuable tips and guidance until you’re ready to finalize your report.

Can you imagine that? It’s like we build a house for you AND advise you on how to decorate it perfectly.


We bet it sounds like something your business could use. If you agree, don’t waste any more time – schedule a call with us today , and let’s see how beautiful your reports can be when we create them together.

sample strategic plan evaluation report

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Free Strategic Planning Templates

By Joe Weller | May 16, 2018

Link copied

The success of your organization — no matter what size or industry — depends on the thoroughness of your planning and vision. A strategic plan can provide a roadmap for accomplishing specific goals, and will increase your chances of reaching objectives on time and budget. In this article, we’ve rounded up the top strategic planning templates in Microsoft Word and Excel, all of which are free to download and fully customizable.

Additionally, we've provided customizable strategic planning templates in Smartsheet, a collaborative, real-time work execution platform that empowers you to better plan, manage, and report on strategic initiatives.

Strategic Business Plan Template

Strategic Business Plan Template

Download Strategic Business Plan Template

Excel | Smartsheet

A comprehensive, strategic business plan may include company information, SWOT analysis, research, goals, resources, risks and more. A template provides structure for your business planning process as well as a communication tool that’s simple to update or modify. Use the template as a guide for evaluating your business, identifying opportunities for growth and development, and creating a strategic plan.

See how Smartsheet can help you be more effective

sample strategic plan evaluation report

Watch the demo to see how you can more effectively manage your team, projects, and processes with real-time work management in Smartsheet.

Watch a free demo

Nonprofit Strategic Plan Template

Nonprofit Strategic Plan Template

Download Nonprofit Strategic Plan Template

A nonprofit strategic plan often emphasizes vision, values, and mission as the foundation for future objectives. A template can be used to clearly define who is being served and what issues need to be addressed. As with a business plan, nonprofit planning may include sections for evaluating risks and opportunities, measuring financial resources, developing a marketing plan, and creating objectives for organizational change.

HR Strategic Plan Template

HR Strategic Plan template

‌ Download HR Strategic Plan Template

Create a detailed human resources strategic plan for your organization, or modify the template to focus on one specific area, such as recruitment or employee relations. Use the template to translate strategies into measurable action plans. This simple layout makes it easy for readers to quickly view key information.

IT Strategic Planning Template

IT Strategic Plan Template

‌ Download IT Strategic Planning Template

IT is an essential part of any business, nonprofit, school, or government agency. While information technology is just one part of an overall business strategy, creating a separate strategic plan for IT will help ensure that you have a comprehensive roadmap to follow for managing and purchasing new assets, understanding your current and potential technology usage, and aligning your IT goals with business objectives.

Strategic Marketing Plan Template

Strategic Marketing Plan Template

‌ Download Strategic Marketing Plan Template

Use this free template to help shape your marketing strategy. It combines information on your target market and business with marketing tactics to help you think strategically and create a plan of action. The template can guide your research process or be used as a simple brainstorming tool.

Social Media Strategy Plan Template

Social Media Strategic Plan

‌ Download Social Media Strategy Plan Template

Social media is an integral part of online marketing, and creating a strategic plan can help ensure that you are using your time and resources effectively. Consider your branding, mission, target audience, competition and other factors to determine which social networks and types of content will perform best for your company. Keep track of KPIs and adjust your social media plan accordingly.

SWOT Analysis Strategy Template

SWOT Analysis Strategic Template

‌ Download SWOT Analysis Strategy Template

This matrix template combines SWOT analysis with strategic planning. Examine the relationships between your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, and then list related strategies to tackle your goals. The layout of this template allows you to view the SWOT categories and strategies side-by-side, which may be useful for a presentation or summary.

One-Page Strategic Planning Template

One Page Strategic Planning Template

Download One-Page Strategic Planning Template

Excel | Word | Smartsheet

A one-page strategic plan is perfect for small businesses or for summarizing a longer planning process. Use this template as is, or edit the layout or included information to better suit your needs. This template includes all the essentials on one page, including values, strengths and weaknesses, goals, and actions.

Strategic Vision Template

Strategic Vision Summary Template

Download Strategic Vision Template

Excel | Word

Summarize your strategic vision and plan, highlighting key information for stakeholders, management, investors, or for your own reference. Combining a vision statement with a brief summary of goals, actions and KPIs makes it easy to see how your business values and purpose relate to your objectives. It also provides a succinct summary for use in a presentation or meeting.

University Strategic Plan Outline

University Strategic Plan Outline Word Template

‌ Download University Strategic Plan Outline

This template provides an outline for university strategy planning. The actual strategic plan may cover multiple pages and provide an in-depth analysis and detailed mission and vision statements. Strategic planning is an opportunity for universities to look closely at campus needs, institutional values, infrastructure, long-term goals, important obstacles, and more. The strategic plan will be a guiding document that is reviewed and updated regularly.

What Is Strategic Planning?

Strategic planning is an organization’s process for defining their strategy so that they can accomplish specific goals and objectives. Strategic planning may be utilized on a large scale, such as planning for business growth over several years or to help a nonprofit or governmental organization reach its stated mission. A strategic plan can also be used on a smaller scale, such as crafting a marketing plan or developing strategy for the goals of one department within a business or organization. It is important to note that strategy is distinct from planning: While strategy looks at why certain steps should be taken, a plan outlines how to enact those steps. strategic planning marries these two concepts in order to determine the best possible course of action. The purpose of strategic planning is to provide a thoughtful, deliberate approach to reaching objectives based on an in-depth analysis of both internal and external factors affecting an organization.

A strategic plan often covers multiple years, addressing both short- and long-term goals. It also provides a way of tracking progress and measuring success. However, it’s not a document that is fixed in stone — instead, it’s wise to revisit and adjust a strategic plan periodically based on the evolving vision, objectives, needs, and resources of a business or institution.

Depending on the scope of your plan, you may be working with a team of multiple stakeholders during the strategic planning process. To keep the process running smoothly, make roles and responsibilities clear. Different parties may be responsible for providing data, reviewing the plan, or authorizing strategic decisions. As you prepare for planning, make sure all participants understand what’s involved in the process and have received any relevant information prior to meeting.

Benefits of Strategic Planning

There are benefits of strategic planning, including the following:

  • Align the goals of a department or project with larger business goals
  • Provide clear communication to team members, stakeholders, or clients
  • Clearly define the vision and mission of an organization
  • Provide clarity on how to deal with internal or environmental changes

Parts of a Strategic Plan

One way to think about strategic planning is that it identifies any gaps between a current state and desired future state, and then dictates how to close those gaps — how you get from where you are to where you want to be. To that end, various factors are taken into consideration in order to formulate an effective plan. Here are some of the elements often included in a strategic plan.

  • Introductory Statement: The introductory statement should briefly describe why the strategic plan was developed and for what time period, and list the authors of the plan.  
  • Background Statement: This section may provide information about the organization, such as history, management structure, and supporting partners or agencies. Alternatively, you could use this section as a brief business statement — more of an elevator pitch — to concisely describe your business.  
  • Organizational Structure: Include this information if it’s relevant to evaluate how your business or organization operates and is structured, from governing board to staffing.  
  • Vision: A vision statement should briefly describe what a company wants to achieve or become. This is one of the primary organizational tenets to consider, along with values and mission.  
  • Values: These are the principles that an organization stands for and abides by. Many businesses create core value statements to guide company culture.  
  • Mission Statement: A mission statement describes the purpose of a business or organization. This is distinct from a vision statement because it is not a projected goal for the future.  
  • Problem Statement: Some plans include a problem statement, which can outline key or discrete issues that need to be addressed.  
  • SWOT Analysis: A SWOT analysis provides a foundation and context for developing strategy by examining the strengths and weaknesses within and organization as well as external opportunities and threats.  
  • Goals: As stated earlier, a strategic plan may include long-term as well as short-term (i.e, monthly or quarterly) goals. Objectives should be measurable and broken down into actionable steps, and the action plan for each goal should specify who is responsible for implementing the strategy, a timeline for starting and ending the action, and how the outcome will be evaluated.  
  • Evaluation: Methods for evaluation should be spelled out in the strategic plan. This could include tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) and documenting the progress of action steps on an ongoing basis.  
  • Executive Summary : This final summary helps employees, investors, or other readers quickly understand your plan.

No matter what type of strategic plan you are working on, using a template provides a simple and quick outline to organize your process. In the following sections, you’ll find free, downloadable planning templates for business, nonprofit, human resources, marketing, IT strategic planning, and more.

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16+ Evaluation Plan Examples & Templates

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