Organisational Development Team

UNA International Service (UNAIS) Organisational Development Programme works to provide Palestinian NGOs and CSOs with specific, targeted, capacity building support.

We identify the organisational strengths, weaknesses and development needs of partner organisations through the use of a participatory organisational self-assessment tool (OSAT) that International Service has developed. Based on the results of the organisational self-assessment, the development needs of the partner organisation are identified and then prioritised in a capacity building action plan.

Organisational Development Team (ODT) is then available to provide the necessary capacity building training and on-the-job support for the organisation to achieve its organisational development goals. One or several members of the ODT may be contracted for a specified period of time to provide capacity building support to partner organisations.

UNA International Service’s Organisational Development Team can offer capacity building support in the following areas:

ODT Mission

To work in partnership with Palestinian Civil Society to build its sustainability and effectiveness in addressing the needs of the most vulnerable members of the community.

ODT Approach

The Organisational Development Team has a non-profit approach to organisational development.  ODT rely on partial donor funding to provide high quality capacity building services to our partner organisations.  A small percentage of ODT income is generated through contracts with larger partners to enable us to work pro bono with grassroots organisations with fewer resources.

Organisational Development and the OSAT

International Service has developed an Organisational Self-Assessment Tool (OSAT) that assesses 54 organisational capacities in 3 areas; Internal Organisation, External Relations and Programme Performance.  During two full working days, the process is carried out through discussions with a wide horizontal and vertical cross-section of the organisation’s staff, in order to give a comprehensive overview of the organisation’s strengths and development needs.  Once the OSAT has been implemented, a capacity building action plan is built in half working day in collaboration with staff members, based on the results of the OSAT.

The methodology of the OSAT process focuses on an in-depth discussion of 54 organisational capacities. International Service has found that the majority of the participants from various partner organisations are committed during the process and the discussion is open and honest.  Many participants have commented to the facilitators that the process is so beneficial because of its frank and participative approach. It generates a dialogue, calling it an "eye-opener" because it reveals where previously unknown problems lie at organisational, departmental, programme, project and individual levels.  As such, International Service’s process of organisational assessment has numerous benefits beyond those of traditional evaluations that rely more on external reports, surveys or individual interviews. 

Implementation of the OSAT in the occupied Palestinian territory

The OSAT was implemented with various different types of organisation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, such as NGOs, CSOs and local Councils.  In spite of the differentials in the size, organisational make-up and general capacity level of the various partner organisations, 76.92% of the participants across the partners asserted that the process was very well conducted, whilst the remaining 23.08% felt that it was quite well conducted.  Since not one respondent answered this question negatively, it indicates the professionalism of International Service’s work, regardless of the partner.  Furthermore, an overwhelming 92.31% affirmed that this process was extremely helpful to their organisation and just 7.69% answered that it was only “sort of” helpful.  This therefore reveals the suitability of this tool and process to all sizes and types of organisations. 

Generally the debate amongst the staff of partner organisations was healthy and in the overwhelming majority of cases, a broad consensus was reached with regards to the scoring of the various organisational capacities.  This reveals the efficacy of the process in creating a shared understanding of an organisation’s strengths, weaknesses and development needs.   

Furthermore, the open dialogue enabled a couple of the partner organisations asserted to identify some very sensitive internal issues of which many staff members and the Directors themselves had not formerly been aware.  They were then able to address these issues in their capacity building action plans, which led to increased harmony and an improved working environment within the organisations.

Organisational Development Team event - 2014

OSAT - an Introduction (Powerpoint)