The Aggravation Index

Leading companies like FedEx and others have found that a daily metric that tracks occurrence of errors that frustrate customers can be a simple and easy way of measuring and predicting when a customer might leave and never come back. By holding focus groups with customers from a variety of industries and locations, FedEx gathered a long list of things the company had done to … [ Read more ]

Profit Mapping

A profit map, the core analytical tool of profitability management, displays the profitability and cost structure of every product in every customer in the company. Profit maps show exactly where profit is flowing and where it is lost.

A profit map is not especially difficult to develop, but it is completely different from the information developed for financial reporting. Many finance managers make the … [ Read more ]

Create a Telescopic Lens for Your Finance Function

Within any department there may be dozens of plans and forecasts, and they’re usually kept on desktop spreadsheets that don’t match up with one another. Our research finds that the connections between these various forward-looking activities are limited. Although companies are not completely uncoordinated, gaps routinely occur. (“Manufacturing never knows what promotions marketing is planning until it’s too late” is one common complaint.) The impacts … [ Read more ]

The Distraction Index

The creeping problem of administrative BS, committees, teams, projects and three-letter management programs all seemed important and necessary when they were initiated. And individually, each of these programs or activities appears important and valuable. However, as organizations get older and more successful, they see the need for more and more of this stuff that was just not necessary in the early lean years. There was … [ Read more ]

Project Management Index

Measuring recurring work like processing transactions or manufacturing parts is different than measuring projects where each one is somewhat different. Sometimes, everything an organization does would be classified as a project. Because each project is slightly different, some organizations have developed a Project Management Index that includes the following submeasures: budget/cost performance, schedule/milestones met, quality/performance and innovation. At the start of each project, the four … [ Read more ]

Optimizing Deployment of HR Assets

Separate jobs into three or four buckets based on their impact (low, moderate or high) on a handful of high-level corporate objectives such as revenue growth. Combine this with rating employees — A player, B player or C player, for example — based on their job performance. This dual-rating system can provide valuable insights into human capital deployment and compensation. For example, it can help … [ Read more ]