Everyone says they’re on top of their numbers. Knowing your figures is – as we are repeatedly told – the only true recipe to monitor your performance for success
Everyone is all-too-aware whether they’re running at a profit or not. But beyond the sweet or sour headline figures, how closely do you really monitor your performance?
There are a host of metrics throughout any business that feeds into the bottom line. These often are simply taken at face value – or worse, ignored altogether. To monitor your performance and know your numbers, it means putting a value on every single process in the business, and knowing exactly how each component feeds into and shapes the overall mix, then being able to access that information is easier said than done.
There are always elements in any business that put a drain on the overall process of delivering a product or service. Whether that is a question of raw material supply, packaging, staff training, invoicing, or simply getting everyone involved to understand that there is a bigger picture outside their specific silo. Being able to put a number to each component is essential to good practical management. It is only with solid information to work from that you can begin to make sound decisions. Anything else is just guesswork.
Intelligent business analytics to help monitor your performance
Slowly but steadily, intelligent business analytics packages are giving key decision-makers access to the most up-to-date, accurate, and easily readable data. As a result, an intelligent business analysis software from the likes of Bilbeo Analytics is on the rise.
What Bilbeo and their ilk provide is a software suite that effectively delivers a desktop overview of every quantifiable aspect of any business operation. By streaming live data drawn from the company’s existing software, what they deliver is the means to continually monitor performance, identify leading indicators, pinpoint costly bottlenecks and generate buy-in from everyone involved. By bringing all the measurements of business activity together in a format that is both timely and readily accessible business analytics are increasingly affording organizations large and small the vital competitive edge that comes from really knowing the numbers.
Keeping the numbers in view
Channel 5’s The Hotel Inspectors as featured in our December issue offers a perfect case in point. To find a chef capable of producing something tasty and appealing is a very different matter to being able to find a chef capable of doing so consistently whilst managing a budget and generating a consistent profit. Those last two qualifications are what separate the wholly gritty, business-like approach of the Hotel Inspectors from the glossy world of something like MasterChef where money is seemingly no object.
No matter how good the final product, or how appealing the service level may be, for all the satisfied customers and the rave reviews, if the numbers don’t work any business will fail. What applies in a hotel kitchen is no less relevant in a publishing house or a warehouse. Knowing the cost and the knock-on effect of every element involved in the mix is the only way to truly maximise your returns. When the results are positive, working without such data is called ‘a good instinct’. When they’re not, it is all-too-often exposed as little more than guesswork. And as they say, that can leave a very bitter aftertaste.