143 – Developing a dashboard for performance measurement. A case study – Part 3.

Posted by Colin Weatherby                                                                                         750 words

the score

In the first two posts (see here and here) I discuss the requirements for a performance dashboard for my unit, the sources of performance measurement ideas, and the thinking behind creation of that dashboard. This post has the final dashboard.

At the outset I will remind you that purpose of the dashboard is to provide the performance information that I need in real time to be able to drive my unit. It is not intended to measure everything that might be relevant to understanding the performance of the unit. There will need to be other measures. The objective is to have no more than ten ‘dials’ ion the dashboard.

The performance questions that I have selected that are relevant to real time understanding and management of performance are: Continue reading

140 – Developing a dashboard for performance measurement. A case study – Part 2.

Posted by Colin Weatherby                                                                         810 words

aircraft cockpit

Some time ago I posted on my approach to developing a dashboard for my unit. I set out the ‘performance questions’ that I could need to answer at any point in time as I ‘drive’ my unit. In this post I apply the ideas of Geary Rummler, Alan Brache, Mark Moore and Christopher Stone to determine measures and lead indicators.

The performance questions identified in my first post are intended to get to the heart of the ‘performance logic’ underpinning performance management of the unit. Understanding the performance logic is an idea from Rummler and Brache. Seeing the performance logic as a series of ‘performance questions’ comes from a handy paper by Bernard Marr on the Advanced Performance Institute website, ‘What are key performance questions’  and how they can be used to engage people in dialogue about performance and guide the design of meaningful performance indicators. Continue reading

81 – Designing a performance management system. Part 2 – A process.

Posted by Lancing Farrell                                                              560 words

measures process a

This is the second post in this series. The first post discussed the type of measures needed to manage for performance. This post looks at how you can design an integrated performance management system.

The starting point for developing a performance management system is the ‘performance logic’ of the organisation. What are the most important indicators or measures of performance for your organisation? What are the key requirements of customers and the main strategic business needs of the organisation? Continue reading

80 – Designing a performance management system. Part 1 – Some tips.

Posted by Lancing Farrell                                                              430 words

rummler and brache book

There have been several posts on performance (here, here,  here and here). The most recent by Colin Weatherby discussed his approach to developing a ‘dashboard’ for his department. This post is an attempt to consolidate all posts into an integrated performance management system based on the work of Geary A. Rummler and Alan P. Brache in Improving Performance – How to Manage the White Space on the Organisation Chart.

Before getting into the details of how to build a performance management system, it is worth thinking about what you are trying to achieve. From a management perspective, measurement specifically communicates performance expectations. It enables feedback to be provided against a standard and for any gap to be identified and addressed. Continue reading

55 – Local government performance appraisal 2/4. Why do we do it?

Posted by Lancing Farrell                                                                                   480 words

line in sand

Well, often we don’t as previously discussed. Not all organisations complete them for every employee and in some organisations it is simply a compliance exercise. Even when you do have a performance review system, it may as easily not improve performance as the team at Utopia showed this with unerring insight. I suppose the relevant question is why do we think that we need performance appraisal?

I don’t think it is because we know that it works and helps to align effort and ensure accountability in delivering on organisational objectives. I think we do it because we are bound to do so by industrial agreements and because it creates the illusion of control. Looking like we are in control is as important in local government as it is in other public services. Continue reading

43 – Developing a dashboard for performance measurement. A case study.

Posted by Colin Weatherby                                                                         1000 words

mini dashboard

I was recently asked to create a dashboard for my unit with the intention that it function like the dashboard on my car (no this is not my car). This is to be done in the absence of an organisational dashboard or scorecard or performance reporting system. There have been a few posts on this topic by Lancing Farrell (here and here) and this post discusses the application of some of the theory.

I started by listing all of the current measures that are in place from external and internal sources of accountability. This included legislation, sector-wide improvement programs, customer satisfaction surveys, occupational health and safety accreditation audits, internal audit programs, culture surveys, organisational policies, and financial reporting. Some of these measures are applied continuously, some are annual and others occur periodically. All of them have some organisational or public reporting of performance. This list was very much a list of things that other people think it is important to measure about the performance of the department. For whatever reason.

Then I made a list of all of the things that I think it is important to measure to know work is being done properly. Continue reading

42 – How do you listen to the ‘voice of the customer’ in local government? It can be done.

Posted by Lancing Farrell                                                                                              740 words

This post follows an earlier post Customer, client, citizen, resident or ratepayer. Who are we dealing with? It takes the concept of value further by proposing some tools that can be used to understand what customers expect and whether those expectations have been met.

I will start with Peter R. Scholtes and his views on the ‘customer-in mentality’, which he says is characterised by ‘thoughtfulness, responsiveness, empathy and altruism’. Customer-in thinking increases the likelihood that customers will get what they need – and need what they get. Listening to the customer is the beginning. Scholtes says we can start to do this by paying attention to what customers say when they contact us to make complaints, ask questions, or request services. Councils typically count the number of resident contacts. Some differentiate between service requests and complaints. Few actively evaluate what customers are asking about or saying to obtain qualitative data to guide service improvement.

Alternatively, or in addition, we can initiate contact with the customer to solicit information through surveys, interview or focus groups. Continue reading