Practical Performance Measurement – Part One

Practical performance measurement is all about answering the following questions:

  • Why does my program exist?

  • What are we trying to accomplish over the life of the program?

  • How do we know we are delivering and managing the program effectively?

  • What resources – tools, training, infrastructure, etc - do we need to improve program delivery?

  • How will we know when we get there - i.e. what will success look like?

Practical performance measurement can only be implemented effectively through a structured and proven step-by-step methodology.

The goal is to systematically collect, analyse and report on performance information throughout the life of a given program or organization.

In order to properly create this measurement system, you need to answer the following questions:

  • What are the 'critical few' measures I need to report on performance?

  • Where will I find the data for these measures?

  • Who will be responsible for gathering, analyzing and reporting on this data in an informative way?

  • How will the performance information be presented and reviewed?

  • When will the performance information be presented and reviewed?

  • Who will be responsible to make sure action is taken on performance results?

From the scope of the above questions, it seems likely that implementing real performance measurement will require a cross-functional team. The team will generally be comprised of subject matter experts drawn from across the program or organization. The team may also include managers, program representatives, and personnel in supporting functions such as human resources, finance, and informatics.

Having this team in place is a critical success factor in building a functioning performance measurement framework. The range of participants helps ensure the above questions will receive practical and implementable answers.

See also:

Best Practices in Performance Measurement

Measuring What Matters

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