Skill level: Intermediate


A dashboard is a document providing a high-level overview of key performance indicators and an organization’s effectiveness in meeting these metrics.


  • Easy to use
  • Provides a very quick status check of performance
  • Allows participants to focus on areas of concern
  • Well known by process participants

How to Use

  • Step 1.  Identify KPIs and goals for each.
  • Step 2.  Develop an effective categorization for measuring (can be colors, numbers, etc.).
  • Step 3.  Determine the frequency of measure.
  • Step 4.  Determine the method of capturing the data.
  • Step 5.  Develop an effective visual format for displaying the KPIs and results.
  • Step 6.  Based on measurement frequency determine the update frequency.
  • Step 7.  Periodically review KPIs to determine if they are effective at measuring goals.
  • Step 8.  Modify KPIs as required.

Relevant Definitions

Key performance indicator (KPI): A metric used to determine an organization’s overall effectiveness in meeting its strategic objectives.


A typical copier service organization would measure its effectiveness in terms of MCBF (mean copies between failures), MTTV (mean time to visit), second-visit rate, and parts usage (possibly in terms of cost per 1000 copies).  Each of these KPIs would have a goal associated with it in order for the organization to achieve its strategic goals, such as total cost per 1000 copies, total staff required, training requirements, etc.

For example:

  • MCBF measuring reliability might be acceptable at 50,000; this value ±5000 could be a “green,” below would be “red,” and above “blue.”
  • MTTV measuring the time it takes a technician to fix a machine might be acceptable at 1 hour, ±10 minutes could be green, over would be “red,” and under “blue.”
  • Second-visit rate measuring the technician’s effectiveness might be acceptable at 10%, ±2% would be a “green,” below would be “blue,” and above would be “red.”
  • Parts usage which measures the consumable cost of keeping the machine running might be acceptable at 5 cents per 1000, with ±1 cent equating to a “green,” above being “red,” below being “blue.”


The goal would be to have all “green” indicators.

Participants can quickly see that the MTTV is too long and needs to be investigated. This could be because of insufficient training, inadequate tools, difficulty of repair, or other reasons. This is the next level of investigation but the area of concern is clear.

It should also be noted that participants may want to understand why they are overachieving on parts usage, as this could be symptomatic of some other non-optimized area of the organization or product, or the goal could be too easy and may need to be adjusted.


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