Editor's Note: This post was originally published in September 2015 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.
Most businesses adopt metrics (also known as key performance indicators, or KPIs) to track the performance of business processes. The processes you choose to measure should support your business goals, reflect your strategic direction, and promote efficiency and productivity. Management approval is also crucial, along with clear communication with all parties who will both contribute and benefit from the results of the changes.
Establishing meaningful metrics demonstrates a commitment to improvement and provides visibility of progress made – or not made – related to the metric. All metrics should be tracked frequently and consistently so that the “owner” knows where they stand in terms of achieving the goal set forth by the metric. Keeping a close eye on each metric will also provide an early warning that conditions are deteriorating rather than improving.
First, define the metric. What business process needs improving and what are the most logical steps toward addressing problem areas and improving the process as a whole? Once you've answered those questions, create metrics to achieve that goal – but make sure they’re aligned with department and company directives and that they're focused, achievable, and accurately measurable.
Reaping the Benefits
By selecting metrics that coincide with business and management goals, you reinforce the importance of improvement.
In addition, such specific goals and measurements show employees where to focus their efforts most strongly, allow them to strive for the same goals – promoting teamwork and strengthening collaboration skills – and reduces the fear of change because everyone has a common purpose.
Keeping It Relevant
Also important is regularly revisiting your metrics to ensure they’re still applicable to your business strategy. If changed circumstances call for adjustment, confer with the metric stakeholders before making any changes and work together for effective implementation.
Metrics should be a continuous process that adds value to your business, and Southeast Computer Solutions has the expertise and experience to help you with defining KPIs and improving your business processes.
Contact us to learn how we can provide your company with on-going training, management, and support of your critical business systems.
About Southeast Computer Solutions
Southeast Computer Solutions is based in Miami, Florida, and has additional operations in Mexico. For over 30 years, we have positively impacted the success of small and mid-sized businesses with effective business management implementations that improve our clients’ operations. We listen, we are accessible, and we care. Learn more by visiting our website or calling 305-556-4697.