Proformative has released an informative and actionable webinar titled “Corporate Performance Management: Scorecards & Dashboards that Drive Results,” and it features some insightful information about how corporate scorecards can transform a business and focus the efforts of its workers significantly. The talk is given by Tim Weeks, Director of Scorecards at CFOwise, a company known for creating effective, empowering scorecards for clients all over the world.
What Is a Corporate Scorecard?
Speaker Tim Weeks uses the example of a sports scorecard that appears in the corner of the screen during the broadcast of a game on television. The small scorecard that only takes up a small fraction of the screen can reveal a great deal of information about the game, including which teams are competing, the scores of each competing team, who currently is in possession of the ball, which period or inning is currently underway, and other information that helps any viewer immediately have a basic understanding of what’s going on.
Weeks and his company CFOwise apply that concept to companies, helping them create corporate scorecards that show critical information about the company, its market, and competitors in a straightforward and easy-to-understand format. Weeks submits that this sort of easily accessible information makes managing a large company less of an enigmatic task and helps to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of a business instantly and clearly.
He goes on to outline six primary traits of a successful corporate scorecard as follows—
Insightful—Data gathered in your scorecard should lead to discussion, analysis, and ultimately change and improvement. The information that gets regularly reported should be analyzed in presented such that it results in creative thinking and problem-solving in order for the company to progress. As a result, each company should implement means of discussion for problem-solving within the enterprise, including forums and other tools.
Meaningful—Your scorecard should help your company focus on the most critical and important things that take place in your business. These pivotal forces define the success or failure of your enterprise, and should be highlighted within your scorecard in order to hone in on the factors that matter most.
Precise—Your corporate scorecard is not the place for broad strokes. Ensure that all information included is accurate and precise, lest the entire concept be derailed by flawed data, resulting in ineffective decision-making.
Accessible—Weeks stresses the importance of both intellectual and physical accessibility. This is not the place for complex and overwhelming graphs and charts. Simplify the data that you track so that it’s easily understandable for everyone in your organization. From a physical perspective, be sure to remove any and all barriers to the information you wish to track. Print it out, tape it up on the wall, and make it visible for all to see and learn from.
Comparative—Track data from the past and compare it to the present. Organize data into daily, weekly, monthly, and annual categories to recognize trends and see how your company is evolving, where it’s succeeding, and where it’s falling short.
Timely—Information should be up-to-date and as grounded in real-time analysis as possible. Once information becomes dated or no longer relevant to the state of things as they are now, it becomes useless to you and your organization.
What should be on your scorecard?
While Weeks stresses that each scorecard should be unique to the business that it’s built to serve, there are some data points that should be included on any scorecard to ensure its effectiveness and usability.
Company assets—Your scorecard should outline the tools and assets your company has available to ensure that everyone within the organization knows your status.
Information about competitors—Having a knowledge about your competitors, their status within the market, and the approaches they’re using to get ahead will help focus your efforts from a competitive standpoint.
Goals—Of utmost importance is the inclusion of your company-wide goals in the short term and long term. This will help focus energy on the most important tasks throughout your organization.
Keys to Success—Find and implement data that will illustrate the factors that have historically led to success and that will dependably lead to success in the future. This will keep your organization from straying down paths without a proven history of success or potential for future success.
What can scorecards do for your business?
By implementing the use of corporate scorecards within your organization, you can create a more unified mindset and approach to achieving individual goals on a wider scale. Each and every member of your organization will be able to easily identify and act on the most important efforts taking place in your business.
By making goals, struggles, and focus points clear, concise, and available for discussion, you make them more actionable. You also foster a sense of community within your organization that will lead to increased collaboration resulting in dramatically improved problem-solving.