…and what KPIs are.Posted: January 6, 2012
Yesterday’s post pointed out what KPIs are not, namely:
- One-time measures
- Metrics which don’t drive business performance
So what are KPIs? (Good KPIs, anyway).
- Measurable facts. Ideally there should be a number attached. Don’t use traffic lights if you can possibly avoid it – they’re way too vulnerable to internal politics. It’s too easy for someone to make a light green when it’s more like an amber, just to avoid making their boss look bad to their boss’s boss.
- Trackable (and tracked) over time. KPIs are important not only for telling you where you are now, but also your direction of travel.
- Core to your business. There’s only a point in tracking the numbers that are really relevant to your business, and it’s important to minimise the length of the list – we all have only so much attention to spend. It’s worth spending a while thinking through what are the figures which really mean most to you – for example, if you’re selling something online, it’s probably better to track sales and sales per visit, than raw pageviews; you’re only interested in more pageviews if they lead to more sales.
And if you start to find that keeping an eye on your high-frequency KPIs is a complicated job, then our alerting product is in private beta now and we’re looking for beta users just like you 🙂