Articles About Performance Management Tools

Investigating performance management tools? InetSoft offers a software solution for dashboards, scorecards and visual analysis that can be easily deployed and used. Read articles below for related information, best practices, and tips.

Easy to Use Performance Management Systems - InetSoft’s dedicated Performance Management Systems and tools have delivered and continue to offer management reporting, scorecards, and dashboards that are easy to configure and deploy. Its business intelligence software platform, Style Intelligence, focuses on enterprise reporting and performance management...

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ERP Systems and Performance Management - Weren't ERP systems supposed to solve the problem of linking performance tracking with your planning? Well, they continue to try to. Of course, SAP has made acquisitions, Oracle made acquisitions, so arguably they are getting close to be able to do much of this. Historically ERP, by itself, has offered reporting capabilities but not really performance management capabilities. And even within or across the various modules, sometimes you have inconsistent reporting tools, inconsistent views of information and KPI’s. So really it is incumbent upon the user to try to stitch it all together. . If the first step is acquire a business intelligence platform like InetSoft's, what the next step towards performance management? After some months of active use of the platform, go back to the users and find out where they get value out of the system, what they’ve been using it for, and start to use those thought leaders, the folks that have been the most aggressive users getting this value out of it. Use them, perhaps, as a way to add the additional performance management capabilities into the organization. For example, adding in modeling and planning processes. And when you talk about planning, it’s not necessarily budgeting, although budgeting is a form of planning...

Examples of Performance Management Charts - These are just some examples of some performance management charts. I know these are a little hard to see, but up in the upper left you have the level of performance, red, yellow, green. On the right you have the trend, and you can see, we used to be in the green. We’re trending down, hitting the red now, and then the analysis is in the bottom left hand corner, and the action plan is in the right hand corner. So this is just an example of a reporting format for looking at these four types of information; level, trend, analysis, and action plan. Another alternative is to look at performance in a hierarchical fashion, where you’d start out with an index at the top, a high level gauge, and in this case, you see the top one is red. Then you’d have to drill down and find out which of the sub measures are red, and you see it’s the one in the middle. You drill down from there. In other words, you just keep drilling down until you find out what the root cause is. What’s causing the overall gauge to be red or yellow? The chart on the bottom right you see is just a way to look at a spreadsheet with red, yellow, green so you can kind of scan it and zero in on the numbers that you need to look at. This is much better than just having the numbers in there because then you have to look at the number and remember what the goal or the target is and so forth. So these are just different ways of reporting or displaying data that tend to be a lot better than using a spreadsheet...

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Executive Strategy Planning - Here is an interesting story from an executive strategy planning meeting. We were doing one of these workshops, and we finished introducing ourselves, and then up stands a person named Mary. And Mary looks at me straight in the face, and she says, “Frankly, I think you are wasting my time. I should be down on the shop floor with my people. I am not in strategic planning. I don’t know anything about performance measures. I think this is going to be a waste of time.” “Thank you, Mary.” Now we are going to Ken, and here is what he has to say, two days later, our senior vice president came in to give a presentation on how the shop floor works. About half way through, up goes Mary’s hand. She says that’s not the way it works at all. So for the next 10 minutes Mary holds court on exactly how the process works. Guess what happened to Mary? A light bulb went on. She confided in me later. She apologized for having ruined my day. She says, “I have been here five years, and nobody has ever asked me what I think before. I am an expert in the shop floor...

External Measures When Using Scorecards - Number nine is a mistake that I made over the years with my clients. I used to recommend to them, like how a lot of books recommend that your scorecard should include measures of your performance. How are you doing with money? Are you making money so that you’re profitable? How are you doing with your customers? How are you doing with your employees? I’ve been teaching people this for years. In the last couple of years, I’ve learned that there’s something missing from most scorecards. That missing category of data is external day. What’s going on in the world in the economic, in my industry, and in my markets that I serve that could impact my business in a huge way. So if you think about it, it’s kind of like all the gauges are on a pilot’s cockpit that measures weather. The pilot can do nothing about the weather but the weather is a very important determinant when you fly or how you fly the plane. Could weather impact whether or not you’re successful at your job as a pilot? You bet. So what would be a weather gauge for General Motors today? It would be an external measure of something that’s going on in the world that is having a huge impact on General Motors’ success or failure, like gas prices...

External Metrics to Add to Your Scorecard - So the external metrics that you might think about adding to your scorecard or your dashboard are like weather gauges for a pilot. A pilot can’t control the weather, but they certainly monitor it in order to determine how to fly the plane. So some example external measures might be how your suppliers or vendors are performing, political factors. A pharmaceutical company might be monitoring what’s going on with the healthcare bill and what’s going to happen when it goes into effect. Other external KPI examples are economic factors like housing starts or the price of raw materials or things like that. Then there are consumer trends. What’s going on in the industry that might impact your organization and finally, what’s going on with your competitors? An external metric might be competitor performance to see are they getting better or worse than us. Maybe our lead is not as much as it used to be. Here are some other things I’ve seen that are typically not measured on most scorecards but are pretty important. How much do we aggravate our customers? How hard do we make it to do business with us? Most companies have no idea. Try changing your cell phone provider or try changing your cable TV provider. That’s a lot of work. Or try refinancing your mortgage. That’s a lot of work, a lot of aggravation...

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Getting Started with Key Performance Indicators - During the slow economic climate of the past couple of years and with all the focus on operational information, people are trying to squeeze out the best possible performance. With less people having to do more work, there’s a pressure to find time to try to keep up with the business performance. Add to that the decade’s long shift in business management philosophy towards fact based decision support. Now more than ever, managers want to be able to say this is what is going on, and this is what we have got to do. The more that you can quantify your business, and run your operation with KPI’s, the better off you will be. Most people are familiar with the financial performance metrics like revenue and profit, but almost every facet of a business can be measured and key performance indicators can be selected. Selecting the proper metrics is key, naturally. You have to get people from multiple parts of the organization involved. First, you have to understand what data do you have? What data is clean and can be used safely to drive these KPI’s? You don’t want garbage in, garbage out...

Good Performance Management Techniques - I think I’m going to turn it back to see what your questions about good performance management techniques are. I wanted to leave plenty of time for questions. It looks like we have about 20 minutes for questions, so go ahead. Now a few of you have already submitted questions, so we’re going to jump right in. While our presenters are answering the questions, please take a moment to answer the feedback form that will appear on your screen. If you’ve pop up blocker technology, we ask you to disable it so you can receive the form. Now, to our first question. One of our listeners asks what tool is used to build such a dashboard? The tool that’s used in the slides is InetSoft's Style Intelligence. It sits on top of whatever system you have; your ERP system or whatever and it extracts data from various sources, including data that might have to be keyed in by an individual. Then it allows you to look at it in nice graphics and to be able to do the drilldowns and look at the analysis right in the meeting...

Government Scorecarding - So what does success look like, not just from a qualitative standpoint, but from a quantitative standpoint, as well. Sometimes you are not going to be able to measure exactly what you want to measure as far as the success of your vision. But there should be at least some kind of substitute or proxy measure or set of proxy measures that will help you get to that level. Then the other questions, of course, which programs are helping us get there? We are hearing this more and more from the White House which is what’s working and what’s not working because obviously we have got to put our money where it gives us the most return on our investments for what’s really helping us to get to our outcomes. And what’s the desired mix given our budget? So these are just some of the questions that we are continually asking people on these government scorecarding projects...

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Guide to Data Visualization for Media Companies - Data visualization refers to the graphic representation of information. It can be used to help people understand facts and figures more easily. Businesses of all kinds can benefit from data visualization, using it to improve both internal processes and external relationships. Media companies, in particular, can leverage data visualization, using it to communicate data in a way that's comprehensible and compelling. Data visualization takes many forms. Common examples of data visualization include charts, graphs, infographics, and maps. Pie charts, bar graphs, and scatter graphs are all examples of data visualization in action. Any visual that is used to present information is a form of data visualization. There are even interactive data visualization tools, such as maps, that allow people to identify patterns and outliers. Data visualization allows users to better understand and communicate analytical information. Research has shown that people are much better at understanding information when it's presented to them visually. Media Subscription Dashboard Example More Analytics Examples View 2-min Dashboard DemoRegister for Pricing Why? Approximately 20% of the human brain is wired just to understand visual images. People are also more likely to pay attention to things that are colorful, which is easier to accomplish with images than with text. A quick example can help demonstrate how data visualization works. Say your media company has data revealing that nine out of ten people prefer color to black-and-white images. Simply seeing the words "nine out of ten" or "90%" written in a presentation isn't super exciting. However, you can convey the same information in a more engaging manner with a graphic. For example, you might have a pie chart that represents the 90%...

Guide To Web App Performance Monitoring - As technology becomes the mainstay of business success in current times, most organizations rely on web applications for generating revenues and delivering value to their customers. But you need to think beyond ensuring your website remains up and running at all times in a competitive digital environment. You must also go the extra mile to optimize your web pages to deliver a better user experience at all times. Factors like slow-loading pages, lack of mobile optimization, and other glitches can cause a high bounce rate and low search engine rankings. It is vital to monitor your web applications regularly instead of taking a set-and-forget approach to stay ahead of these performance parameters. But most business owners miss out on it and end up getting complacent about user experience. You cannot afford it because users expect web applications to be available around the clock, highly responsive, and accessible from anywhere. Here is a comprehensive guide to web application performance monitoring to stay ahead of these factors...

Heat Map View of Performance - This is the heat map view of performance. So in this chart, what I’ve colored in are the funds that are selected. Let’s bring everything back for a second. What the heat map is doing is taking all 1,800 funds and grouping them into the categories: growth international, balanced, small cap, and so forth. So this top left box is the Fidelity Magellan Fund. It is old data, but it’s stating the three year performance is 22%. What is good is green. The scale goes from 43 as dark green to minus 26 at bright red. The box is big because of big invested position. This gives me at-a-glance views of what is happening in this portfolio. I see the growth category is generally doing fine. The international funds are a different story. It has got one that’s doing really well, a small one. One is doing bad. In general it’s a lighter color so it’s doing less well. Whereas the treasury category, it’s a more middle of the road performance, but very consistent. The capital appreciation category has a couple of extreme outliers...

Heat Map Shows Contributions of KPIs - The heat map at the bottom of the page is a new feature on this page. It shows the performance of various table games grouped by pit location on the casino floor. The size and color of the shapes are determined by two key measures and quickly show the relative contributions of these KPIs. The settings for the heat map can be changed interactively. Different key metrics can be used to determine the size or color of the heat map. The color bandings and ranges can also be changed along with specifying filtering criteria and other facets of the heat map. The marketing dashboard page shows details of marketing promotions targeted to certain customers. Changing selections again changes the area chart and the grid. It is quick and easy to segment the data by different customer data attributes. So in this short demonstration you can see how useful this dashboard application is to the casino manager. This performance monitoring dashboard contains approximately 8 megabytes of data representing over 22,000 rows and with over 40 business measures analyzed from different perspectives. Not only does InetSoft offer dashboard technology, but InetSoft has a high volume, high efficiency dashboard platform that manages all tasks in extracting and formatting data including multi database access, high scale data compression, automatic personalization, dynamic assembly of dashboards into self running packages, and high volume distribution to thousands of recipients...

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