Reducing the Burden of KPIs

June 23, 2015 by Stacey Barr

One of the biggest objections to measuring performance is the perceived effort and time it will take to do it. Is it true? Is the benefit of measuring not worth the burden?

Collecting the data, analysing the data, reporting the data, interpreting the data, making decisions with the data. When some people think about this effort they must exert to get a meaningful performance measure, they feel a sudden urge to hide in a dark corner and rock.

But there are three ways we can tackle this problem of KPI burden.

Prevent the burden by designing the KPIs properly.

Lots of the burden of measuring performance is caused by measuring what doesn’t need to be measured, or trying to implement poorly designed measures.

  1. Be ruthless about measuring only what really truly needs to be measured. They have to meet 7 criteria://
  2. Choose measures for their relevance and don’t forget their feasibility://
  3. Write very clear and specific measures, so you don’t waste time collecting the wrong data in the wrong way://

Cure the current burden by streamlining.

We can clean up some of the current burden of measuring performance by removing waste and rework.

  1. Stop measuring what you don’t need. Kill off the zombie KPIs quickly: //
  2. Switch to sampling in your data collection, rather than trying to measure everything that moves://
  3. Ditch data you don’t use, simply by not collecting it anymore. Reduce the size of your surveys and data forms://

Reframe the burden as an investment.

A burden sounds like a waste of time. But don’t you agree that if a performance result is worth achieving, it’s worth the investment of measuring it, so we can tell if we’ve achieved it? So when you’re measuring what matters, it’s an investment, not a burden.

  1. Show people the value of measuring the results worth achieving://
  2. Prove the value of a performance measure by measuring it’s ROI://
  3. Give people ideas for how to make the time to measure, particularly by reducing the time they are wasting because they don’t measure://


What’s most burdensome about performance measurement in your organisation? Let’s get specific and explore how to avoid and reduce your burdens of measuring what matters.

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