Metrics are standards of measurement that enable us to evaluate aspects of business crucial to growth. Be it an operational function, project, program or portfolio, they increase visibility into our performance. Note that if we cannot measure, we cannot improve and with the right metrics in place we continuously improve.
Here are ten ground rules on how to select the right metrics for your business:
- Each metric should be informational (tells you what's going on), diagnostic (identifies areas of improvement) or motivational (influences behavior)
- Metrics should be easy to gather with existing data points for greater efficiency.
- You should not gather metrics for the sake of it. No one who matters will care and you will will quickly train people to ignore the data you compile
- Portfolio and Program metrics should measure outcomes, not activity. In the cases of Projects and Operations, metrics should measure output and activities as needed
- Create a dashboard for each category of metrics that is easily digestible, accessible and more importantly should be actionable
- Be smart about what you measure and make use of the data you gather
- Measure everything necessary and nothing more. Stakeholders make better decisions with concise data
- Don't cut corners as data integrity is very important in a trustworthy partnership
- Use tools to measure. Manual effort more often leads to manipulation and invalid data points
- Metrics should be mapped with client and organizational KPI's
Please let me know if you have additional rules regarding business metrics or would like to comment the ones listed above.