Let’s answer this question with a little history: Before GPS and other modern methods of navigation, sailors and explorers found their way between the oceans and the planets by following the stars. Especially in the north, they look for Polaris, or the Pole Star, as it always helps them to know where the true north is. They can use measurements between Polaris and related constellations in the sky to navigate in the right direction.

When you work in any format, you and your team are like the researchers. You’re charting new territory for example, and you need the North Star to help you navigate your way. The right KPIs act as North Star metrics for project teams, guiding them to success.

Of course, the sailors of the first centuries did not depend only on one star. They were guided by many constellations. As a project manager, you need to know how to select several good KPIs to help you and your team navigate effectively to complete a project.

How to choose the right KPI?

Good KPIs are important for your work and results. If you can work to improve a KPI without moving the bar to project completion or improving customer satisfaction, for example, that KPI may not be necessary.

Good KPIs are usually those that measure or track your progress on project goals, budget and resource utilization, and the quality of project results.

Some common KPIs that project managers can consider

There are no perfect metrics for all projects, and KPIs that work for one effort may not be useful for others. Check out the list of common KPIs for project management below to find some that can work for your current project.

Cycle time:

Cycle time refers to the time it takes for a team or team member to complete a task, and is a useful metric if your project has repetitive tasks.

Work time vs. estimated time:

Of course, if the time spent writing these blog posts takes 8 hours, the project does not fit into the plan. Tracking these conflicts allows project managers to make changes quickly so that the overall project can meet deadlines.

The number of completed tasks:

If you’re using a Gantt chart or project planning tool, you’ll want to know how many tasks your project involves. Some teams find it useful to know how much work has been done because it helps to know if the team is moving forward with the work plan or if they need to slow down. effort.

The number of tasks completed on time:

If your work schedule is tight, you may also know how many tasks are completed on time. A higher number may indicate that the project is progressing as a whole.

Percentage of projects completed:

In some cases, the number of projects is not stated this way. If you have 12 tasks for a project and one of them takes three weeks while the other 11 take one day each, the number of completed tasks can be misleading. Instead, you can talk about the percentage of full employment.

Error rate:

The number of errors made by the team is important, especially for tasks involving tangible results. Returning to the example of writing 100 blog posts in a month – if 90% of the blog posts have serious errors, management may not consider the project a success, even if the team has completed 100.

Budget variance:

This is a measure of how much the project team has spent against the planned budget. Getting a job done by spending twice as much as you made is not always considered successful.

Profit or return on investment:

Another indicator of the operational efficiency of a project that should be paid attention to is profit. Perhaps the project is over budget, but if it generates double the revenue, the company’s executives can still call it a success.

The number of cancelled jobs:

Organizations or project managers who work on multiple projects may want to pay attention to the number of cancelled jobs before they start or finish. A high number of cancelled jobs can be a sign that you should review the details and selection process.

That’s a lot of numbers and metrics to consider, and our list is endless. Tracking and managing your projects – and their accompanying KPIs – through a collaborative solution, like monday.com, can help keep your operations moving in the right direction.