Accountability


Policies & Procedures

Transparency

With over 50 years of experience facilitating development projects, at SNV we understand the importance of being a safe pair of hands for the funds and initiatives entrusted to us by our many donors and partners.

We are committed to transparency and accountability in our work and have procedures and guidelines in place for all critical processes to ensure we meet and exceed the expectations of our partners in relation to project management, monitoring, performance management and quality assurance.

Governance

SNV’s operations are overseen by an independent Supervisory Board. Consisting of members from different but complementary backgrounds, including the financial, corporate and development sectors, the board offers SNV senior expertise in auditing, finance, governance, project management, social affairs and sustainability. The board includes a Selection and Remuneration Committee, which is responsible for recommendations to the full Supervisory Board regarding the appointment, evaluation and remuneration of the Chief Executive and Managing Board members. An Audit and Risk Committee monitors finance, risk and compliance and advises the Supervisory Board on finance, control and risk management issues.

Financial & resource management

The complex nature of SNV’s global activities requires a highly controlled management system, which SNV provides at local and head office levels. SNV uses the Enterprise Resource Planning software application SAP for its financial and human resources processes. Data is captured at field level in a front-end SAP interface and is validated before being uploaded into the corporate SAP system, guaranteeing data quality. SNV advisors write time on a weekly basis, which allows for monitoring of contracts on the basis of agreed days.

Audit & Risk management

The quality of SNV’s work, including internal processes and services to clients, is ensured by both internal and external auditing and evaluation.SNV’s financial statements are audited annually by an independent external professional auditor. The external auditor performs their audit and issues their opinion on the annual accounts of SNV as a whole, which include country and head office financial information. Audit work is carried out in the Netherlands as well as in SNV countries as  appropriate to enable the auditor to form their opinion. The external auditor reports to the SNV Supervisory Board and  Audit and Risk Committee. SNV has received an unqualified opinion each year since becoming a fully independent organisation in 2002.

SNV also has an Internal Audit Unit with a straight reporting line to the Chief Executive and Audit and Risk Committee. The Internal Audit Unit executes internal audits based on a risk-based audit plan. These audits provide the Managing Board with independent and objective information on the degree of control of SNV’s primary processes, supporting processes (such as Finance and HR) and projects. They support SNV in accomplishing its objectives by assessing the organisation’s processes as a means to identify good practices, possible weaknesses and risks. Based on the information provided, the Managing Board takes measures where needed to improve the organisational practice and stimulate learning. The Internal Audit Unit monitors the follow-up of the audit recommendations and reports to the Managing Board and Audit Committee on progress. The Internal Audit Unit applies and upholds the Institute of Internal Auditors’ Code of Ethics.

Quality assurance

Everything SNV does is focused on achieving development results in the most efficient, effective and sustainable way possible. To ensure this, SNV makes planning, monitoring, evaluation and learning a key part of its work. The basis for the planning, monitoring and evaluation (PME) approach is a series of clearly articulated steps. By following these steps, project staff can understand what is working and why, and use monitoring and evaluation information for improving the effectiveness of their work and reporting. In practice, PME means constant analysis, reflection and improvement of our work – enabling successful tailoring of approaches to local problems and contexts and full transparency for our donors and partners.

SNV’s PME approach is guided by quality criteria. For each step in the PME cycle a set of quality criteria are defined, which summarise the minimum requirements for an adequate PME system. These quality criteria are a must for all SNV projects. Together, they promote participation of development stakeholders in planning, monitoring, evaluation and learning, underscore the importance of recognising complexity and being flexible in planning processes, and strongly support reflection, learning and steering based on collected data on the project’s progress.

Find out more about SNV’s approach to Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation.

Corrective & preventive action

SNV implements a range of policies to ensure staff and organisational initiatives meet the highest levels of ethical conduct. All staff are required to adhere to the SNV Code of Conduct, which provides guidelines for good conduct and directions for exercising good judgement in ethical matters or in situations of conflict of interest.

SNV maintains a strict policy of zero tolerance to theft, fraud and misuse of resources. We consider it the responsibility of all SNV staff members to be aware of the potential for fraud, and to report any reasonably suspected fraud. SNV’s Fraud Response Procedure sets out the course of action that has to be taken when fraudulent activity is suspected or has taken place. SNV also has a Whistleblower Procedure in place, which allows people within SNV to report alleged irregularities for investigation confidentially and without fear of prejudice, while providing clear steps and measures to resolve the issue.

SNV supports the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and implements a Child Protection Policy to ensure children are safeguarded from abuse, discrimination and harm of any kind in the implementation of SNV activities.

Evaluations