Introducing the Benefits Management Framework

I am pleased to introduce this benefits management framework for UN reform. The framework is intended to help us know we are delivering the reforms we promised; (a) improving our ability to deliver mandates more effectively, and (b) demonstrating the UN is a more transparent, accountable, agile and flexible organisation. Furthermore, the framework is the stepping stone for the UN to transition to a continuous improvement system.

Benefits are “…the measurable improvement resulting from an outcome perceived as an advantage by one or more stakeholders, which contributes towards one or more organisational objectives…”. The benefits of our reforms may not be financial or even quantifiable, but this does not mean they are not real improvements.

Benefits management is not a ‘tick box exercise’. UN staff need to apply critical thinking and professional judgement supported, but not constrained by, the approaches and tools detailed in this framework. This framework is principles based and reflects lessons learned from our collective experience to date, the results of a recent pilot, and good practice from other organisations around the world. The framework is a live document and will be continuously improved based on our experiences.

There is an expression; “every improvement is a change, but not every change is an improvement”. It is our responsibility to help the Secretary-General demonstrate to the UN’s stakeholders that the UN is not only changing but improving. Proving the benefits throughout the reform process and beyond will help us achieve this.

—Jens Wandel

If you have any questions please email for more information.


This is the main message of UN Secretary-General António Guterres at the ECOSOC Operational Activities for Development Segment, where he briefed Member States on the progress of repositioning the UN development system. 

To establish a dialogue with heads of entity who received enhanced delegated authority from the Secretary-General on 1 January 2019, the Under-Secretaries-General for Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance (DMSPC) and for Operational Support (DOS) co-chaired two regional briefings, with support from their Assistant Secretaries-General in late January.

Built on the principles of results-based management, an accountability framework will enable heads of entity to demonstrate that they are exercising their delegated authority in a transparent, responsible and accountable manner.