ESF Information Memo 30/20 - Performance monitoring arrangements for Year 3: 2020/21

This memo provides projects with an update on performance monitoring arrangements in Year 3: 2020/21.

Dear Project Promoter,

Following on from the recent Quarter 2 Stakeholder Zoom meetings, this memo sets out the Performance Monitoring Arrangements approved for Year 3.  

To support Projects the following performance monitoring arrangements have been applied:

  1. Year 2 – A two week (16.7%) enhancement was applied at all Q4 Letter of Offer (LoO) targets.
  2. Year 3. A 25% enhancement was applied to all Year 3 LoO targets.
  3. Unit Cost monitoring of Year 3 has been suspended.

In addition to these performance enhancements projects have been given the opportunity to re-profile Year 3 Quarter 3 & 4 targets to realistic levels which have been assessed to be achievable in the current climate. 

When re-profiling projects were required to set realistic targets whilst being mindful of the need to provide value for money and to deliver for participants at this difficult time. When re – profiling projects were asked to factor in the possibility of staff absences due to COVID-19 and the capacity restrictions of remote working. Projects should also factor in the potential for a significant number of ex-participants who may re-engage for support as these enrolments will not count towards your annual targets.

Year 4 – Unit cost monitoring

I would also like to take this opportunity to set out the arrangements for the resumption of unit cost monitoring in Year 4. Payments to projects and performance achieved in Year 3 will sit in isolation i.e. whether you over or underachieve it will not impact on your Year 4 unit cost calculation. As example of how this will work in practice is set out at Annex A.

If you have any questions or concerns about this please contact our team at

Annie McGowan
Head of Project Delivery Branch

Annex A

Example of unit cost calculation year 4

When calculating the Cumulative unit cost per participant in year 4 the calculation will ignore  actual funding and performance in year 3 meaning that any over or underperformance in years 1 & 2 will carry forward into year 4.

In this example the overachievement against target in year 1 & 2 of 8 (208 – 200) carries forward to year 4 offsetting the small underachievement in year 4.



LoO Target


LoO funding

LoO Unit Cost

 Actual – Participants

Actual Funding

Cumulative Actual Participants

Cumulative Funding  

Cumulative Costs per participant


Year 1


















Year 2



















Year 3








Actual funding or performance will not apply to unit cost monitoring


Year 4

















Related articles

Back to top