We have already devoted considerable attention to the importance of selecting metrics and targets that matter (see https://ams.az.gov/about/ams-focus ). But we're going to return to this topic because choosing good metrics may be the most important element of the Arizona Management System. If you don't measure the right things, the system can't help you deliver better customer value and more vital mission outcomes for Arizona.
Feel free to review the AMS In Focus three-part series on "Choosing Measures that Matter" to learn more about choosing good things to measure. This edition discusses actual steps in the process for creating metrics, key points that can make or break each step, as well as why the step is important.
Step 1: Create unit metrics -
You'll want to choose metrics that align with your unit's core business processes. Each metric should have a performance target, be easy to understand and show progress over time.
Why? Because clear visual metrics will help expose performance gaps and areas where problem solving can help your team improve.
Step 2: Post unit metrics -
Metrics must be visible and clearly indicate performance status so gaps are spotted quickly.
Why? Because visible metrics quickly show your team's progress and when help is needed. They also can motivate the team to improve.
Step 3: Make metric status visibl e at a glance -
Use color or symbols to quickly convey if performance is meeting the target and if performance trends are positive.
Why? Because anyone in your agency should be able to know at a glance whether the metric is on target.
Step 4: Update unit metrics -
The cadence of metric updates should drive the timing and frequency of when the team meets to check performance. The more frequent the better as these are opportunity to course correct and improve. Regular updates ensure timely problem solving.
Why? Because current metrics indicate teams are actively huddling to review performance and are engaged in problem solving and continuous improvement.
Step 5: Discuss unit metrics -
Gaps in metrics need to be noted and roadblocks discussed and removed. All team members should openly participate and raise issues.
Why? Because gaps in metrics are the gateway to problem solving and continuous improvement. Teams should challenge themselves to continually set more aggressive targets.