Using the right tools
In this series of three articles, we have looked at the value and application of KPIs. In the first article, we looked at the importance of leadership buy-in. In the second, we discussed why KPIs must be aligned with strategic business objectives to obtain maximum value, rather than individual projects. Now, in our final article, we look at the right tools that can help you to best manage KPIs.
How KPIs used to be managed
Until recently, KPI collection and measurement was an arduous and time-consuming affair that required a good deal of manual intervention. Typically, it was handled via spreadsheets, with data analysts working on master documents to manually update figures and to produce custom graphs, charts and dashboards to suit individual preferences. Additional commentary was provided through input by individual managers. The entire process was slow, arduous and prone to error. It was also incredibly resource-heavy due to the time requirements to produce KPI management packs on a regular basis, and the risk of accidentally inputting incorrect information – or losing the spreadsheet itself – was high and experienced all too often. Happily, modern digital solutions in the cloud make KPI best practices far easier to achieve!
Using cloud-based digital systems to automate intelligent KPI management
A new breed of dedicated KPI management software packages now exist, designed to make the cyclical process of KPI data capture, measurement, analysis and presentation far easier, slicker, more accurate and better designed to suit the needs of the end user.
One tool that we have rigorously tested and highly recommend to our clients is called Scoreboard: It is one of the most powerful tools on the market and aimed at organisations of all sizes.
The advantages of Scoreboard
Linking KPIs to business objectives
Scoreboard can help to ensure that your business KPIs are linked to your business objectives and supporting initiatives. As we discussed in our second article, this is essential to extract the full value from KPI management activity.
Automated reports and dashboards
Many organisations strongly value KPI dashboards, which visually present key data sets to show progress and to flag up any important points in a visual way. This provides a rapid visual of baseline and benchmark information that decision-makers can use when considering courses of action. However, a dashboard is only as effective as the underlying data. Scorecard ensures that the data added to the system is correct and extracted from the underlying systems that power the business in real time.
Attractive dashboards, tailored to your needs
Scoreboard can use any of the data added into its system to generate KPI dashboards, taking information found in scorecards, strategy maps, graphs and even images. Even better, KPI dashboards can be created in a few simple steps and are automatically updated as underlying data changes. This means that last minute requests to see certain information before key strategic meetings can be easily accommodated! Hard copy ‘packs’ for leadership teams no longer need to be generated at a great time and cost expense. Instead, interactive dashboards and reports can be interrogated during leadership meetings, with rich data for decision making available at the click of a button. Users can also select the information presentation views that are most intuitive and understandable for their particular needs.
The system also automatically produces scorecards that show your progress and which track goal progress over time. It also stores legacy information so that years of archived data can be reviewed instantly.
Generic business language
Scoreboard uses standard and ‘plain English’ terminology that decision-makers across all industries will understand and recognise, making it accessible to all.
Powerful search function
This is very useful for decision-makers when they are trying to access a discrete piece of information that will aid a strategic discussion or help to pinpoint a decision.
Keen to find out more about Scoreboard and the value that it could offer your business? Find out more at KPI Software.