Quick Tips for Choosing the right Performance Management Tool

Jun 12, 2019 1:56:36 PM

Strategy teams and performance specialists are usually responsible for communicating performance measures to employees and making sure they are reporting their actual achievements on time, in order to generate accurate performance reports.

If you are in one of those positions, then you know for sure how important it is to have a dedicated software to help manage this process, rather than doing it manually through Excel sheets which is very time and effort consuming.

Once you’ve determined to start using a software, you will have to evaluate multiple systems to make sure you choose the right solution for the set requirements. In addition, you want to assure that the selected solution will be accepted and adopted by end users.

In this post, I am going to share quick tips that you can use as a guide for evaluating and choosing the right performance management tool thus ensuring you maximize your ROI.

Learn how SimpleStrata can help you manage your organization’s performance in an effective way. Try it now. 


To start with, you need to set your requirements clearly. Once you start evaluating different tools from vendors, you may be overwhelmed or misled by the bulk of features and functionalities presented to you, which you may not necessarily need. Unless you have a clear list of requirements, you may be pulled into making wrong purchase decisions.


To help in identifying your requirements, I suggest you ask yourself the following questions:


  • Who are the targeted users? Strategy team? Directors and top management? Managers and team leaders? Employees? Or the whole organization?

The selected software should be designed in a way that provide features and functionalities tailored to each user group so that they all get engaged and interact with it. You don’t want your system to be used by some users only.

  • How many users are expected to use the system?


The selected system should be scalable to fit the required number of users, even if you have a limited number as a start. Adding, assigning or removing users should be an easy task that can be handled by the system admin with no technical intervention required.

  • Will users enter the data manually or will results be read from other systems and applications?

Some systems come with limited functionality in terms of data input channels. Make sure the selected system will accommodate all your needs. If manual entry is required, you also need to evaluate the system’s friendly capabilities to engage end users through notifications, reminders, alerts and quick easy actions for reporting.


  • How often do you report your data?

The frequency of your reports should be supported in the system. The best option to go with is a solution that supports configurable reporting periods which can accommodate any changes to your methodology in the future.


  • Is there any historical data that must be reflected in the system?

If the answer is yes, then the system should support importing that data in bulk, rather than inputting it manually.


  • Will users use mobile devices for interacting with the system?

To maximize users’ interaction and promptness in reporting, it is recommended to choose a system that has a mobile app which allows instant access and updates.


  • Should the system support multiple languages? If yes, which ones?

Check the system’s compatibility with the required languages in terms of interface, data input and outputs.


  • Should the system allow users to set their KPIs and measures, or that will be restricted to the admin only?

Some systems allow certain actions to specific user groups only. Make sure you are exploring all possibilities that satisfy your methodology of execution.


  • How often changes are applied to the KPIs or strategy data?

Some systems are very difficult to set up and handle by the normal user and require technical intervention for making changes and modifications. When you are evaluating a system, ask questions about adding, modifying, linking, reassigning components, etc.


  • Is the strategy data interconnected? Does it include different levels of relations and links among its components?

Some systems are built based on pre-defined execution frameworks and therefore, allow only certain types of structures and connections. Make sure the system you choose will be able to reflect your exact structure, without having to make any adjustments to it to fit the system. The best choice would be a system that is flexible and agile to changes, since what works for you today may not work tomorrow, and you may need to implement some changes to the existing framework. You don’t have to look for a new solution for every change!


  • Will the system allow users to cascade KPIs and assign tasks?

Ensure that the system you chose supports the level of detail of execution you are looking for. Some systems allow cascading up to one level only. Some accommodate strategic KPIs only and don’t drill down to employee KPIs. Some allow setting and reporting KPIs only, and don’t handle the efforts part where tasks and activities are assigned and reported. My recommendation is to have a system that will allow all options. Although you may not use that functionality immediately, you want to have it available once you are ready to use it.


  • Will you need to generate custom reports based on the data you have in the system? Do you have an idea of the expected number of required reports?

You should have a general idea about the expected reports from the system. This includes identifying the data you need to see, analyze, compare, etc. Also, you need to know what reports and dashboards can be generated for the normal users.


  • What type of training is expected? Online, onsite or through tutorials?

Training set up sometimes depends on the organization’s culture. However, some vendors have special training programs that accompany the system implementation. Make sure you select one of those, because user enablement and adoption is of critical importance to successfully launch the system. If it not used as intended, then the value of having it is not achieved.


Refer to the above questions during your product evaluation as they will help you sorting your options and filtering out some of them. In the above context, my recommendation is to try out SimpleStrata, our suggested solution that answers most of the above questions and provide you with maximum flexibility to accommodate adjustments and apply changes as needed, with minimal effort and cost.

Using SimpleStrata, we’ve helped many organizations managing their organizational performance in an effective way, while contributing to the adoption of the system through our specialized technology adoption programs.


Learn how SimpleStrata can help you manage your organization’s performance in an effective way. Try it now

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