De-mystifying Series: Which Metrics Matter?

March 6, 2018 Rachel Illingworth Koeling

I’ve concluded that measuring progress was probably one of mankind’s first accomplishments — right after fire and farming, of course. Over time, I imagine humans beginning to notice (and be impressed by) their own successes, through technology and their growing intelligence. In the last few centuries, humanity has made leaps and bounds in measuring progress. In the end, it’s in our nature to measure how far we’ve come — it’s how we know we’ve achieved success.

cave woman kneeling by fireWhat are cloud measurements?

According to a NIST’s Cloud Computing Service Metrics Description, a “metric is a standard of measurement that defines the conditions and the rules for performing the measurement and for understanding the results of a measurement.”

Which, in plain speak, is measuring to find out the performance (and results) of your CRM. Some questions to keep in mind while you measure cloud performance can include: Is your cloud solution working for you? How can you improve these metrics? In what ways can you better strategize for your company’s cloud usage and growth?

woman using pen for checking or proof paperHow do you measure the cloud?

It’s essential to understand the metrics that your cloud solution provides, and then use that data to determine progress. Tracking key metrics, Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), can provide your business with context and potential guidance on future strategy. One interesting facet of tracking KPIs is that, depending on if they’re correct, they can affect your success.

From these KPIs, you’ll know when, where, and how to update your services and scale to the growth of your business. There are multiple avenues to tracking your KPIs, but for an objective measurement of your Salesforce org, I suggest using Cloud Metrics for Salesforce. This solution can help you understand the hidden complexities within your Salesforce environment that threaten to hinder the cloud’s benefits.

Luck indicator Which KPIs are important?

Colin Powell once said, “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.” This carries over to KPIs — it’s integral to your company’s success that you understand which metrics to maintain. In order to get successful results, you’ll need to ask the right questions, which will lead you to measure the right KPIs.

Each business will have a unique set of KPIs, but the following criteria (all centered around ROI) are crucial for every business:

  • Revenue and revenue growth
  • Costs and projected growth in costs
  • Profits
  • Market share and market share growth
  • Target market growth
  • and Invested Capital Return

This is an excellent set of metrics by which to judge the performance of your cloud applications, but it’s only a starting point.

Many companies put their customer service first, so their KPIs will center around new customer growth and customer retention. The same goes for the growing number of businesses that put their workers first — their KPIs will center around engagement and worker growth, as well as attrition.

Still aren’t sure which metrics to pursue? We can help you figure out which KPIs are relevant (and which metrics to ignore) with our insightful Virtuous Cycle Diagnostic Session. If you want to learn more about cloud providers, cloud managed services, or even how to improve company culture, we have hundreds of available resources in the Appirio Hub.

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