“KPIs influence management behavior as well as business culture”– Pearl Zhu

KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are the quantifiable outcomes that are used to measure performance. They are used to gauge and determine achievements in comparison to others. It allows you to determine your performance vis a vis your objectives and goals or peers. 

Your KPIs can be financial-focused (eg revenue), customer-focused (eg customer satisfaction or retention), and/or process-focused (eg operational efficiency).

When determining your KPIs, the first thing to ensure is that your KPIs are SMART; Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time Specific. Your KPIs also need to be evaluated and reevaluated consistently to ensure SMARTness. Another element to consider is to ensure your KPIs provide clear information about your progress. They must be able to track and measure efficiency, quality, and thoroughness in addition to performance over time. They must help you make informed decisions – KPIs have to be actionable and lead to overall company goals. 

The first step in determining KPIs is to define your goal, then you will need to define actions that will help you achieve your goals and finally ways to measure the success of these actions. Here are some questions to ask to help you determine your KPIs

  1. What is your desired goal?
  2. Why is this goal important?
  3. What do you need to do to get to the goal?
  4. How are the actions going to be measured?
  5. How would you know you have achieved your goal?
  6. How often will you need to review your progress on your actions?

Some examples of measures include revenue growth, revenue per client, profit margin, client retention rate, customer satisfaction score, customer effort score, net promoter’s score, and so on. 

As mentioned, KPIs must be actionable, they must lead to informed decisions. When presenting your KPIs to stakeholders ensure you show your business objectives, your past performance, your current performance, your future targets, and rooms for adjustment. 

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