Are your teams missing key deadlines due to the lack of quantifiable informative and actionable data? In the fast-paced business world of today, is your management team making key business decisions using metrics or reports that may be days or even weeks old? Is your organization burning hundreds of man-hours a year creating metrics and reports that bring marginal return to the bottom line?
In many organizations today, this is a very typical scenario—companies are inherently data rich and information poor. The lack of a robust metrics and reporting best practice leaves many organizations playing catch-up just to get the job done.
Inferior Metrics and Reporting Process
In the absence of a consistent and repeatable method for the extraction, transformation, and creation of metrics and reports, an organization is typically ill prepared to react in an efficient and timely manner. Other shortcomings include:
- The organization is incapable of accurately communicating the company’s success or lack of progress
- Executives and managers at all levels are making decisions based on inaccurate and or dated metrics
- Managers in the day-to-day operations are in a reactive mode from the lack of actionable data
- Executives have limited ability to measure against stated business objectives and goals (e.g., metrics and KPIs)
- Inconsistent gathering and reporting of data and metrics allow for the misinterpretation, misrepresentation, or inadvertent release of company information
- A significant number of manual man-hours are utilized in identifying, extracting, and creating the metrics and reports that are potentially error prone, dated, and inconsistent from week to week or project to project
Taking Metrics and Reporting to the Next Level
A key factor in having success with a metrics and reporting effort is an organization (center of excellence) or committee with executive management sponsorship that is dedicated to the development of a QA metrics and reporting business process.
- This organization will be empowered to implement, refine, and enforce the utilization of the metrics and reporting best practices.
- The team would define processes for the identification, extraction, and reporting of company metrics and data.
- They will identify and deploy robust metrics and reporting artifacts (e.g., metrics and reports) and utilize best practices.
- Depending on the size of the organization and/or level of reporting, a data warehouse may be in order for the storing and analyzing of metrics data.
- In order to automate some or most of the reporting effort, there are a number of software-based tools that can be incorporated into the process to facilitate the extraction, transformation, and presentation of data.
Advantages of a Robust Metrics and Reporting Process
A consistent and repeatable approach in the process of gathering and reporting for an organization provides more than insightful and actionable metrics.
- Automated metrics and reporting solutions are expandable and significantly more reliable in creating a repeatable set of metrics for a project, department, or across an entire organization.
- Consistent reporting of company data allows team members the ability to quickly and easily obtain and analyze data and metrics in real time or near real time.
- Informed executives and managers with quantified data allow educated decision making in all phases of the business life cycle.
- Companies are able to become proactive in day-to-day operations, based on quantifiable and timely information.
- The potential for significant savings is available in both time and money.
- The significant number of manual man-hours previously used in creating the metrics and reports can now be used for other purposes.