Our monthly interview today is with Jason Bryant, IE’s Commercial Director. Jason has expertise in all the areas key to supporting our clients, including a passion for getting the analytics right! He recently shared some of his insights at the UK BHBIA analytics forum and we talk to him today about getting to grips with everybody’s favourite – KPIs.

“Jason, previously we discussed with Steve Marsh the different stages in the journey to Launch Excellence. How would you recommend clients use Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in the overall context of Launch Management?”

Firstly, I would say that you perhaps shouldn’t have any KPIs

… unless you plan to go about it the right way to provide actionable value for you and your organisation. Creating and implementing KPIs should not just be a tick box exercise to say that you are monitoring and managing your launches.

“So how would you approach the activity of implementing KPIs for an organisation with a determination to do it right?”

The first important step, to ensure you will get the best value from your KPIs, is to decide what you really need them to tell you. Start with the end point in mind and work back; where do you need/want to end, and by when? Consider the checkpoints along the way and the evidence required to support these measurements. Do they require targets and are these legal/compliant in those places? Sounds simple doesn’t it, but many people implement any and all KPIs that they ‘can/should’ have, without remembering the K stands for Key. KPIs really should reflect the evidence gathered, supporting actions you may need to consider for increasing your chances of success in launch. A good Launch Excellence partner will have a library you can start from, although this can lead to ‘paralysis by analysis’ so we recommend you use these with extreme caution!

“What sort of value can relevant KPIs deliver to an organisation?”

When the relevant KPIs are implemented and used consistently they can drive clarity and alignment within an organisation by flagging early warnings. KPIs are not just about being able to review the results; a vital part is the action planning resulting from analysing the KPI results. Consistency and relevance (across and up/ down the organisation) are critical characteristics of good KPIs.

“When thinking about the most relevant KPIs, what areas should be considered?”

Depending on your launch stage, KPIs can be implemented around tactical areas (pre and post launch process), or around Launch Excellence (benchmarking against previous internal or external ‘analog’ launches.)
These can then be set as input or output KPIs in order to link and analyse the associated impact of the measured activities.
Another consideration is whether you will be setting predictive or retrospective KPIs. Don’t get too stuck into retrospective KPIs. Like driving a car, if you spend too much time looking in the rear view mirror, you will miss what is about to come ahead. By setting predictive KPIs you have a larger view of the future and any issues flagged can inform and facilitate conversations early about action planning and relevant robust mitigation.

“How do you see KPIs as a part of an organisations’ Launch Excellence journey?”

When relevant KPIs are implemented across an organisation, and the necessary support given to deliver, all teams can understand what the key aspects are and therefore a shared vision of Launch Excellence can be embedded. Through proactive action planning based on the KPIs, cross collaboration and best practice sharing can be utilised for consistent, successful and iterative launches.

Stay tuned for further KPI insights from Jason and his team as they share with us their top 5 Do’s and Don’ts of maximising the value of KPIs.

Contact IE for a discussion on our Professional Services including our KPI definition and validation workshops and our KPI review to refresh and reinvigorate your current metrics.