KPI Design

Ultimate Performance Index Guide

By Bernie | October 21, 2018

Why you need a ‘Performance Index’… It’s a pretty common situation. You decide to try and fit all your measures on one A4/foolscap side. After lots of haggling, and increasing use of small font sizes, you can just about squeeze everything on one page (if you have good eyesight). You show it to the executive…

The Units Mixup That Cost $328m

By Bernie | September 20, 2016

On December 11th 1998 NASA launched the Mars Climate Orbiter. The probe was designed to measure water distribution on the surface of Mars.  286 days later the $328 million probe arrived at Mars, missing the correct orbit by 100km. The probe dipped into the atmosphere, overheating the engine system. The probe crashed into the surface…

ROKS KPI Method Infographic

Designing KPIs Infographic

By Bernie | September 1, 2016

Process KPIs, the pain-free way

By Bernie | July 28, 2016

Some KPIs are obvious, but important… When it comes to choosing some KPIs,  careful thought may be needed to align them with strategy (see this article on why you should use KPI Trees to do this). Other measures are in the ‘obvious but important’ camp. In process and production environments it’s fairly safe to say that we care about…

Small Large Comparison Fish Too Small Goldfish Fishbowl. Envy can drive poor KPI choices

Choosing KPIs the right way

By Bernie | May 4, 2016

I used to be a bit of KPI purist. I would argue that you must build your KPI selection from ‘scratch’ as your KPIs must reflect your strategic objectives and you should never ‘borrow’ another organisation’s strategic objectives. Having spent a lot of time actually creating KPIs for organisations I have softened a little on…

A chainsaw, not the recommended Tree Diagram tools

Tree Diagram Tools: Tips and App Reviews

By Bernie | April 12, 2016

Visio Visio, for those who haven’t come across it, is a vector-based diagramming tool. It has it’s roots in flow charts and IT design work. It has a steep learning curve, due to the wide range of capability and it will requires some work to set up template shapes though… Pros Powerful, flexible and pretty…

Accurate KPIs and a bowlful of M and Ms have more in common than you might think

Accurate KPIs, Van Halen and brown sweets.

By Bernie | April 1, 2016

How do you know if you are looking at accurate KPIs, reports or dashboards? Perhaps we can learn a lesson from rock legends Van Halen. A copy of their 1982 tour rider makes for interesting reading. It’s 53 pages long and contains some very specific requirements, including: Two dozen English muffins Six bars of soap Six…

Why Finance should not own (all) your KPIs

By Bernie | December 1, 2013

A point to make is that KPIs are not just financial measures. Financial measures are crucial in many organisations, but they are also `lagging’ – which means they tell you what happened after the event. KPIs should also help you see what is coming, not just what has passed. It’s like the difference between a…

KPI Management – Using KPIs to improve your business

By Bernie | February 11, 2013

KPIs are the first step for improving or controlling a business. Measures are the eyes and ears of anyone who has to manage anything bigger than a one-man business. KPI management is all about using KPIs to give you a clear and honest view of whichever organisation you are looking at. I use two processes…

Putting the Key into Key Performance Indicators

By Bernie | July 20, 2012

How many “top level” KPIs do you have? If you have more than 10 top-level measures then you probably have too many. Building a measurement hierarchy (using a KPI Tree) can help show which ones are crucial. Remember to focus on the indicators that support your strategy. If you want to find out how to…