Defining Goals and Objectives of a Work Rights Program

Establishing program goals and objectives is crucial because it:

  • Specifies changes you expect to see in the target population and helps to inform what types of programming you should select to implement.
  • Clearly identifies the particular target population and helps to inform what types of programming may “fit” with programs already offered for that group.
  • Clearly identifies goals and objectives and suggests outcome statements that will be useful in evaluation.

Defining the goal of your program

Goals are broad statements that describe the desired longer-term impact of what you want to accomplish. They should describe the ideal future impact you would like to see after having implemented your program, focusing on visible changes. Goal statements provide the overarching direction of a program and state what is to be accomplished. Once the goal is clearly defined, you are capable of determining the specific objectives (i.e. desired outcomes) and activities necessary to achieve it.

For example, a potential goal statement might be, “Refugees are able to work and are protected at work, enabling them to live safely, gain self reliance and contribute to the economic well-being of the host community in Country X”.

In defining your goal, consider the following questions:

  • What are we trying to accomplish?
  • What are the desired results we expect?
  • How would we like the conditions to change?

Some examples of a SMART goal for a refugee work rights program could be as follows:
Refugees in Tanzania are able to work and are protected at work, enabling them to live safely, gain self-reliance and contribute to the economic well-being of the host economy.

Defining the objectives of your program

Objectives/Desired outcomes are the specific changes expected in your target population as a result of your program. There can be numerous objectives for each goal. In defining them, you should state what will change, for whom, by how much and by when. Typically, they are related to changes in:

  • Knowledge: What refugees know about their rights and opportunities
  • Attitudes: How refugees see themselves, their host community and vice versa
  • Skills: The development of labour market skills
  • Community awareness and mobilization: Refugees empowerment through representational organs
  • Changes in policies and law
  • Increased cooperation: e.g. between employers and refugees

In defining objectives, consider the following questions:

  • What should be the immediate changes in our target population as a result of our program?
  • What changes are reasonable to expect?

Objectives should be SMARTER: Specific, Measurable, Agreed Upon, Realistic, Time-Based, Ethical, Recorded

Step Concept Description
1 Specific

Exactly what is it you want to achieve in your business or personal life? A good goal statement explains the what, why, who, where and when of a goal. If your goal statement is vague, you will find it hard to achieve because it will be difficult to define success.

2 Measurable

You must be able to track progress and measure the result of your goal. A good goal statement answers the question, how much or how many. How will I know when I have achieved my goal?

3 Agreed

Your goal must be relevant to your stakeholders and agreed with them. Examples of people to agree your goal with are your line manager, employees and customers.

4 Realistic

Your goal should be stretching, but realistic and relevant to you and your company. Make sure the actions you need to take to achieve your goal are things within your control. Is your goal achievable?

5 Time-Bound

Goals must have a deadline. A good goal statement will answer the question, when will I achieve my goal? Without time limits, it’s easy to put goals off and leave them to die. As well as a deadline, it’s a good idea to set some short-term milestones along the way to help you measure progress.

6 Ethical

Goals must sit comfortably within your moral compass. Most people resist acting unethically. Set goals that meet a high ethical standard.

7 Recorded

Always write down your goal before you start working towards it. Written goals are visible and have a greater chance of success. The recording is necessary for the planning, monitoring and reviewing of progress.

Example taken from Asylum Access Tanzania Work Rights Campaign:

Goal SMART Objectives
Refugees in Tanzania are able to work and are protected at work, enabling them to live safely, gain self-reliance and contribute to the economic well-being of the host economy.
  • Design and implement a participatory program that builds livelihood skills for refugees is responsive to refugee needs, skill sets and market analysis. 60 to 100 refugees are reached through the skills building program, in which at least 50% of refugees are employed or self employed within 6 months.
  • AATZ develops knowledge and expertise on relationship building and advocacy with potential refugee employers based on in-depth understanding on employer challenges & barriers in hiring refugees.
  • Through advocacy activities implemented within a network of potential refugee employers, employers’ understanding of refugee employment law and procedure and attitudes of hiring refugees are improved. This leads to an increase in refugee employment in Dar es Salaam.