Business best practices that development organizations should adopt

In this era of competition, value for money and intense scrutiny over development projects, adopting private sector rigor and practices can increase the efficiency and competitive advantage of development organizations. Devex identifies five such practices that can help development organizations improve their operations.

Despite increasing collaboration between business and the development sector, it’s often hard to ignore the palpable differences between the way development organizations — be them donor agencies, national governments, nongovernmental organizations or other implementing partners — and the private sector operate.

In this era of competition, value for money and intense scrutiny over development projects, adopting private sector rigor and practices — particularly in the areas of people, process and technology — can increase the efficiency and competitive advantage of development organizations.

Devex explored this issue by surveying a small group of our members who have significant experience working in both the private and nonprofit sectors. The results were fairly clear: despite the cultural shift and upfront investment required to build private sector systems and processes, there are huge payoffs in terms of winning donor projects, staffing those projects, streamlining delivery, and measuring and reporting on results.

Based on our survey and interviews, here are five private sector best practices that can help small, medium and large development organizations improve their operations.

This article is for Devex Members

For full access to the content of the article sign in or join Devex.

About the author

  • Sharmila parmanand

    Sharmila Parmanand

    Sharmila is currently an instructor at the University of Vermont. She has a master’s degree in gender and development and has supervised and conducted research projects on human trafficking and related issues. She has also worked as a debate and public-speaking consultant in more than 20 countries.