Guide for Setting Up and Improving Organizational KPIs

July 3, 2023


A man sits at his office desk and views organizational business KPIs.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are a vital part of any growing organization. They provide key information on how well the organization is doing and whether it is meeting its goals. Let’s take a look at what KPIs are, why they are important, and how to set up and improve KPIs across your organization.

What Are KPIs? 

KPI stands for Key Performance Indicator. This measurable value indicates how well a business, department, or section of an organization is doing. KPIs help to measure whether strategic goals and objectives are being met. Furthermore, KPIs allow an organization to track its progress toward defined and desired outcomes. 

There are various types of KPIs. However, the two main categories are business KPIs and organizational KPIs. Let’s dive into both. 

Business KPIs

Business KPIs focus on measuring the success and goals of a specific business area or process within the business. This includes departments such as marketing, sales, and production. 

Organizational KPIs 

Organizational KPIs are used to measure the overall performance of the entire organization. This includes more in-depth areas such as financial, operational, customer satisfaction, and even employee engagement. 

KPIs must be tied to a specific goal or objective. They must be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART).

When setting time-bound KPIs, remember that some may be weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annual. Do not limit yourself or your organization to measuring all goals and objectives within the same time frame. This is especially true if you work in sales. 

Why Use KPIs? 

KPIs provide a clear understanding of your business's progress toward its goals. Additionally, they help to identify areas that need improvement or adjustment. KPIs are a vital tool for any organization. 

Here are four main reasons why KPIs are crucial for your business and how they can help your organization grow and improve.

  • Setting goals and objectives. KPIs provide a straightforward way to measure progress toward specific goals and objectives. 

  • Identifying areas of improvement. With regular KPI monitoring, businesses can more easily identify areas that need improvement. 

  • Data-driven decision making. KPIs provide a way to measure and analyze data, allowing management and project leaders to make informed and data-driven decisions. 

  • Aligning the organization. Overall, KPIs help to align the organization towards common goals. Each KPI measures a stepping stone or ancillary process, leading to one main goal or objective. 

Setting Up KPIs 

If your organization is not yet using KPIs, it’s time to set some up. This does not need to be a daunting task. With careful planning and execution, this will lead to significant benefits for your organization. 

Here are seven steps to setting up organizational KPIs. 

  • Identify your organization’s goals. Consider what you want to achieve both in the short and long term. 

  • Determine your performance indicators. Lay out which performance indicators are most relevant to each goal in Step 1. 

  • Gather data. Establish a system to collect data on the performance indicators determined in Step 2. 

  • Set targets. Set realistic and achievable targets with time frames for each performance indicator established in Step 2. 

  • Assign responsibilities. Determine and assign who is responsible for achieving each target from Step 4. 

  • Monitor progress. Regularly monitor the progress towards each target and adjust your timeframes as needed. Be flexible where necessary and appropriate, but also be rigid with targets being met when and where possible. 

  • Review and revise. Periodically review your KPIs to ensure they are still relevant and they are contributing to your overall main objective, and adjust them as needed. 

Improving Your KPIs

The best way to improve your KPIs is to communicate them, adjust as needed, and celebrate successes within them. Ensure everyone in your organization understands what KPIs are, what they measure, and how each one contributes to the overall organizational goal. Adjust KPIs that are not achieving their intended goal or have unrealistic time frames. 

Most importantly, when your organization achieves a KPI target, celebrate it. This is vital. It keeps your employees motivated and reinforces their importance. 

Need More Guidance?

For more guidance and helpful information on KPIs and other avenues for success for your organization, lean on ASAP. Whether you’re looking for more office management skills or tips to increase your efficiency at work, our training resources are here to help you and your business thrive. 

Download our infographic for setting up KPIs at your organization - Download

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