Knowing where you are going and how you intend to get there is one thing, you must also be able to recognize your destination. At this stage in your project planning (based on previous articles), you already have developed a vision and mission statement, set clear goals and objectives so you are pretty ready to start implementing your programs. But before you start implementing, you must determine how you will measure your success.
Success Indicators can also be referred to as key performance indicators and they form an important part of information required to determine and explain how your organization progresses towards your mission and objectives. It is so easy to get caught up in a rush of activities and lose sight of the key performance milestones meant to point you in the direction of your organizational mission and objectives.
A success indicators is a quantifiable measure that is used to determine how well set goals will be achieved. Often times indicators will vary from project to project however some will cut across common industries. For example if you’re involved in entrepreneurship training, some of the common success indicators will be number of businesses started as a result of the training, number of job opportunities created by businesses and annual turn over of start ups among others. By looking at similar projects in your industry, you will be able to get an idea of the key success indicators that apply to your program and you can customize them to your programs.
Success Indicators must be based on legitimate data and should provide context for evaluating organisational goals. They should be defined in a way that factors beyond the control of the organization can’t interfere with their fulfillment. In other words, they should be within the control of the organization. Indicators should be quantitative, time bound, realistic and able to determine the progress of the program or project.
When choosing success indicators, you should start by considering the activities in the program to consider whether their outcomes are viable in assessing the progress of the program against it’s stated objective. The indicators must be relevant to your project goals. It is advisable to consider 5-10 indicators for program with multiple projects and a fewer number for smaller projects.
Success indicators are important in building a successful organization because they help you focus on your core mission and ensure that goals stay aligned to the vision of the organization. This focus will enable your organization to stay on task and work on meaningful project activities that will enable you reach your core objectives faster.