What is business performance management?

by Tom | Nov 28, 2021

time icon 4 mins

Business performance management involves a number of tools and processes, but essentially it’s concerned with monitoring and assessing your business’ progress over time. 

There are many sophisticated ways you can measure and monitor the productivity of your workforce. This includes implementing the OKR framework, KPI development, conducting in-depth data analysis and more. All of these tools are vital assets in the business performance management process; it’s all about selecting the options that suit your business’ needs.

So many companies get this wrong – with a scattered approach, unclear objectives or harsh penalty structures which demotivate employees. But when you get business performance management right, you set the stage for sustained success for your company – along with the wider benefits of a satisfied, supported workforce.  

What is business performance management? 

If you’ve been here before, you’ll know how much we emphasise the importance of measuring the progress of your business in a meaningful and accurate manner. Without being conscious and clear on how well your business is doing, determining what’s working and what isn’t, it’s hard to move forward successfully and achieve sustainable organisational growth. We also stress how crucial it is to pay close attention to your teams too. Maximise the potential of the people in your business by motivating them to do the best they possibly can.

Business performance management tools take care of both of these concerns simultaneously. They enable companies to clearly see where their people are doing well and where they could improve in line with business objectives, ensuring they can be properly supported and motivated. Through monitoring and evaluating employees in this way, companies can put plans in place to create an optimally productive environment allowing their teams to perform to the best of their abilities. Performance management in business really is essential – but it’s easy to get it wrong. 

The importance of performance management in business

Paying close attention to (and planning for) performance management in business has real, tangible benefits for your company both in terms of progress and aligning with your company culture. When a sense of continuous accountability is set in place, a healthier, more transparent working environment emerges where employees feel valued and able to speak up when they need additional resources, communication is clear and stress is reduced as a result. 

Benefits of performance management in business include (but are not limited to):

  • Enhanced employee motivation and productivity
  • Aligned positive company culture where employees feel supported and understood
  • Improved sense of responsibility and accountability amongst employees
  • Clear objectives for employees to work towards
  • Timely acquisition of company goals, targets and objectives

What does the business performance management process look like?

Your business performance management process will be unique to your business – but there are a few key characteristics you’ll want to retain in order to ensure the implementation of any business performance management tools runs smoothly and successfully.

Check-in regularly 

As with all types of goal and performance management structures, regular check-ins are key to ensure you remain on the right path and can make changes proactively if not. If you’re working with OKRs, regular OKR reviews will help you to see where improvements can be made early on.

The need for frequent meetings and open communication is even more crucial when it comes to any kind of employee management system – they need to know that they are being actively engaged with all year round with regular support from management to make this work.

Make sure goals are defined, measurable and clear 

When laying out your expectations, be sure to check that they are directly tied with the work of each employee – for example, their role in delivering goods or services, the processes used to create those end products and behaviours such as how the employee presents within the business, their values and work ethic. Give employees input into how success should be measured, and what it looks like for them.

Develop specific outcomes tied to job performance 

Employees should be clear on what goods or services their job produces, and their role in that. How does their performance directly impact the company? How should they interact with clients, colleagues and management?

Align employee activities with overarching company objectives

Employees should have a good understanding of how their goals contribute to the company’s overall objectives.

Essential business performance management tools

We love our tools here at TBG – they provide clear structure and support when implementing objectives. Although using business performance management tools is something we strongly recommend, it’s also important to note that you must ensure the tools you use are appropriate and relevant to your business. 

Some of the methods included below might be perfect for one company, but not for another. Others however can be implemented with success universally (ideally in tandem with others), like OKRs. Research each one in turn and decide on several to help you more easily navigate the business performance management process.

OKRs

OKRs are an essential aspect of any performance management planning. Ensuring that your goals are SMART and feel achievable is the first step – whilst also providing key markers to assess progress more accurately along the way.

Performance management software

Software programs can help you to input key data to help you develop an accurate overview of employee performance, which can be especially helpful where a company has many members of staff or multiple departments. 

Personal development plans

Each employee should have their own roadmap to success identifying their strengths and areas they wish to improve upon (read more on this here)

Reward and recognition

Expand your view of employee work as purely transactional (they get paid, they do the work) and explore the value of rewarding them for positive performance. Studies show that 80% of employees work harder when they feel appreciated, indicating that reward schemes can contribute to reducing staff turnover and enhancing productivity. Some companies like to implement wellbeing schemes to prevent burnout, employing wellbeing coordinators to provide personalised support to the workforce using wellbeing initiatives delivered in line with company culture. 

There are many different methods you can weave into your business performance management process, including real-time feedback and regular one-to-one meetings. This is where professional support is often needed to determine how you implement a business performance plan successfully.

How can our Giants help?

Struggling with the implementation of your business performance management process? Don’t know where to start when choosing which business performance management tools will be a good fit for your company? We’re here to help. We have a wealth of experience supporting businesses to maximise their potential. Our team installs efficient performance structures to enable them to reach their ultimate goals; our passion is helping you to grow through streamlining objective-setting processes. Speak to us today for tailored, friendly advice.