Data Culture Toolkit: Teaming Plan

Why Do You Need a Teaming Plan?

Regardless of whether you are planning to create or formalize an internal data team or tap an existing group to serve as an external data team, it is important to be intentional and outline who will be involved, expectations of individual members and the group, and how the group will function.

A teaming plan helps anchor the work so that team members know what to expect. It also supports sustainability of the work over time as members transition on or off the team. Additionally, documentation of the data team’s plan supports ongoing communication with leadership about the data use work, which is especially important during changes in leadership.

After reviewing the considerations below, use the fillable worksheet to document your teaming decisions. Then you may transfer these decisions in the fillable teaming plan.

Teaming Plan Considerations

Using the Team Resources to Support Your Efforts

This section of the toolkit presents two important resources for facilitators/planners [only facilitators noted below]to support your discussion and documentation of your efforts.

  1. Teaming Plan Considerations Worksheet Facilitators can use this worksheet to guide team discussions and to take notes about key decisions or issues for further consideration.
  2. Teaming Plan Template Facilitators can use this template to finalize the teaming plan. Simply transfer your answers from the worksheet to the appropriate section of the template and you will have a solid draft of your teaming plan!
    Use the considerations below to guide your discussion about why the data team is needed, the purposes it will serve, and how the team will function. Discussions should include all team members. Some considerations may not be relevant for all data teams and can be skipped; groups may identify other considerations not included in this list.
    The teaming plan can be updated or amended as needed. The Team Plan Considerations Worksheet is available for teams to record notes for each consideration. The Teaming Plan Template is available to add your responses from the worksheet to complete your teaming plan. Upon completing the template, be sure to follow your organization’s processes for finalizing plans.
    Consider the following:
  1. What is the name of the data team?
  2. What is the purpose of the data team?
  3. What is the process or framework the team will use for data-informed decision making/inquiry?
  4. Who (what role) does the data team report to for guidance and/or to seek any needed approvals?
  5. What are the goals? How are they prioritized or rank ordered? What are the specific activities?
  6. What levels and types of data (e.g., state vs. local, record level data vs. aggregate) do the data team have access to, and where do the data reside?
  7. How long will the data team continue to work?
  8. What is the frequency of data team meetings?
  9. When will the data team meet?
  10. What is the duration of the data team meetings?
  11. Where or how will the data team meet (e.g., what location and space or via what technology)?
  12. How many members does the data team have?
  13. Who (what roles) serve on the data team, and how are members identified?
  14. Who (what role) will coordinate the work of the data team, including developing meeting agendas, facilitating meetings, and communicating progress to members and other key stakeholders?
  15. How is the work of the data team communicated to program staff, participating agencies, stakeholders, and others?

Published August 2017.