Performance evaluation and reporting
- Evaluating our performance helps us understand if we are managing parks effectively and how to adapt and improve in future.
- Five yearly park review will provide data for the QLD State of the Parks Report (QSOP)
- The first QSOP Report will be available in 2018.
- The analysis of information from QSOP will help us develop new targets and objectives to strive for.
What is performance evaluation and reporting?
We are constantly striving to improve how we manage parks—to protect park values, to be more efficient, and to adapt and innovate to meet new challenges. Evaluating how we are performing is a critical part of our Values Based Park Management Framework—it provides a check-up for our business and helps us understand how effectively we are managing parks. By using the results of monitoring, we can test whether we are achieving the targets we set during the planning process, including objectives and outcomes for managing parks.
Reporting allows us to take stock of our parks and how well we are managing them—to ask if we are doing things right and to set our future direction. All park agencies have finite resources (people, time and money) and reporting helps demonstrate that resources are being allocated to the highest priorities, that we are using public resources efficiently, and always trying to improve how we manage our parks.
Managing parks is a complex business and involves a broad range of management activities, processes, programs and systems. To understand what we are doing right or wrong, we need to evaluate how we perform within different parts of our business—or different stages within the management cycle. Evaluating the outcomes of management is a particularly important part of our Values-based Park Management Framework—as this is a measure of how our park values are faring and informs future park management. QPWS has adopted an internationally agreed evaluation process, to evaluate how effectively we manage parks and adapt over time.
Measuring how we are performing
The park review is the main tool for evaluating how we have performed. The park review answers the following:
- Do we have adequate management tools in place?
- To what extent are we implementing them?
- Is our management effective?
- The condition and trend of key park values,
- Whether strategic management directions have been implemented,
- Whether desired levels of service have been achieved, and
- Whether actions have been effective in achieving management objectives.
The review brings together a range of data including systems information and results of a park manager survey–to evaluate how effectively we are managing within all stages of the management cycle. We are also able to evaluate what we have done against budget expenditure to help to determine the costs of managing parks.
We regularly prepare reports about how we are performing–to make sure we are accountable, using public resources efficiently, focused on the department’s objectives, and continuing to improve our management.
Reports are built on the results of the park review, and are presented in ways which suit different readers-including rangers, managers, government or the public. Information from reports is analysed to inform the next planning cycle and assist with setting targets for adapting and improving our management over time.
The performance evaluation and reporting process has four main stages
The park review information set including health check data and operational systems information is used to conduct the park review. This happens annually for iconic parks and five yearly for all other parks.
State-wide Service Delivery Standards (SDS) are measured annually along with the annual tracking of the Master plan targets. This information then provides data for the 5 yearly QSOP Report.
Information from reports is analysed to inform the next planning cycle. The Master plan targets are revised five yearly.
Park management activities are implemented based on the revised Master plan targets and the analysis of information from reports.
Service Delivery Standards
We set and report on Service Delivery Standards (SDS) each year. SDS are high level targets or measures that help us evaluate how we are performing. SDS are based on the department’s objectives and strategies e.g. ‘what percentage of capital works program were delivered?’ and each year we are required to assess whether or not we have met these measures.
SDS are closely aligned with the targets we set through the QPWS Master plan – which links back into our planning process. We evaluate and report on SDS so that we can track our progress against the Master plan. We also report on how we are performing against SDS measures in the Queensland State of the Parks Report every five years.
What is the Queensland State of the Parks Report?
The first Queensland State of the Parks Report (QSOP) will be available in 2018 and is a report card on how well we are managing Queensland’s parks and forests. QSOP will highlight the range of park values that we manage, as well as the many issues that affect the condition of our parks. It will also highlight our many achievements, as well as outlining the challenges ahead and where we can improve. QSOP will show that QPWS is seeking to be an accountable, innovative and forward-thinking parks manager.
QSOP is based on annual evaluations (which gather information from a range of sources) and reports on:
- how QPWS is protecting key park values and achieving management goals;
- the condition and trend of key values in all iconic parks, plus a selection of parks which represent
- Queensland’s bioregions and biodiversity;
- how our state-wide parks system is faring, including threats to key values, other pressures on parks, management efforts and levels of service.
The QSOP Report contents include:
- An overview and background
- Introduction–scope, objectives, structure
- Methodology–key concepts, assessment approach, data sources
- Park system overview - how are our parks faring overall?
- Values based adaptive management approach
- Main outcomes evaluation
- Condition and trend (2018 will be based on iconic and selected parks only)
- State-wide overview of threats to key values and pressures
- State-wide summary of park management activities for key values and levels of service
- Supporting evaluation
- Case studies
- Stakeholder perspectives
- Bioregional summaries
- Strategic groups of parks e.g. all parks in a single World Heritage Area
- Progress and outlook
- Progress towards Master plan targets
- Achievement of Service Delivery Standards
- Targets for future reporting.
For more information on Performance Evaluation and Reporting contact QPWS Planning Services email ParkManagementPlans@npsr.qld.gov.au.