Whether your mentoring programme is structured formally or is more informal, you should ensure you monitor, record and evaluate it.
Monitoring informal mentoring programmes
You can monitor an informal mentoring scheme, by getting the mentor to:
- record each meeting, what it involved and the main objectives of the activity
- record a summary of discussion and action points
Monitoring formal mentoring programmes
In more formal mentoring programmes, you can monitor the programme by:
- training the mentors
- considering how to match mentors to mentees
- issuing guidelines as to what mentoring involves
- understanding when mentoring would be effective
- setting up contractual arrangements where necessary
- developing a system to evaluate the effectiveness of the programme
It is good practice to measure the progress of the mentoring relationship:
- at the beginning to establish expectations
- after six months to assess how well the relationship is working
- after 12 months to measure outcomes
Evaluating a mentoring programme
It is important to evaluate your mentoring programme to ensure that it is achieving its aims. You should do this by assessing the mentors as well as the programme itself.
To evaluate the programme, you could ask all participants to give feedback on the effectiveness of the mentoring relationship.
The formats for the feedback could include:
- a simple questionnaire where the participants answer specific questions about the programme
- a written report from each participant
- an interview of each of the participants
You can evaluate the mentor in the same way. However, also consider including specific mentoring criteria as development goals for mentors.