Productivity advice is a dime a dozen. What really matters is how you measure your productivity after you’ve applied specific methods.
In this day and age, we are bombarded with ideas to increase productivity at work. But while they’re helpful in theory, no one really knows how well they work unless there’s measurable data to analyze. After all, there’s a major difference between feeling productive and being productive.
But just how do you go about tracking employee productivity? If you want to ensure that your systems and processes yield the best results, let’s dive into what productivity metrics are and the six productivity metrics you should focus on for better productivity management.
What Are Productivity Metrics and Why Are They Important?
Many teams currently measure productivity by input rather than output. For example, leaders may think employees who spend longer at their desks are more productive because they’re taking fewer breaks or socializing less.
The issue with this is that you can’t accurately gauge productivity by how productive someone looks. This is why every company needs to have productivity statistics in the workplace that help them see their true performance.
Productivity metrics are measurable data that help you set expectations for your company’s performance and determine whether or not employees are meeting them.
For example, the amount of time that it takes someone to complete a certain project or the number of cold emails sent to prospective clients are both measurable items that you can use to gauge productivity.
Put simply, without productivity metrics it’s incredibly difficult to accurately determine the strengths and weaknesses of your workforce, or how to improve workplace performance.
What Challenges Arise When Establishing Productivity Metrics?
Quantifying productivity is not always a seamless process, even with the best productivity apps on your side. For example, let’s imagine that you run a business where multiple people on a team are tasked with completing separate parts of a project.
Generally when it comes to individual productivity, you would gauge the output of a single employee and how long it takes them to complete the whole task. Then, from there, quantify their productivity.
Now, when you have multiple people collaborating on a project, figuring out what they’re responsible for and finding metrics to measure can be problematic. It’s no longer just a matter of who did what, but how did the sum of all parts come together.
It’s safe to say, then, that tracking employee productivity metrics effectively becomes more complex in correlation with the complexity and scale of your team.
For small teams working in a compartmentalized way, gathering productivity metrics is relatively easy. For large and enterprise teams, it requires a more robust, well-designed productivity system.
The Importance of Productivity Metrics for Goals and Productivity Monitoring
The key to getting the most out of your productivity metrics is to set goals and key performance indicators (KPIs) for your organization.
With set expectations for individual output and how long work should take, you can assess progress for each individual. This allows you to make adjustments if your goals are unrealistic or address issues individuals may be experiencing to help team members become more productive.
Of course, productivity can play another crucial role in your organization: acting as an early warning system. If you set KPIs that aren’t being met, you can quickly fix the situation and prevent further productivity loss.
Put simply, you should always set goals and make sure metrics are in line with KPIs. If the data falls below certain expectations, you can make the necessary changes sooner rather than later. A productivity management platform will make this process seamless.
The 6 Most Important Productivity Metrics to Pay Attention To
So, now we’ve covered the importance of productivity metrics and how they support productivity tracking for enhanced workplace performance.
But which productivity metrics are the most important to focus on moving forward when you’re tracking employee productivity? Let’s take a look...
1. Overall Labor Effectiveness
Overall labor effectiveness (OLE) is a productivity metric that seeks to understand workplace performance by measuring:
- Availability -- the percentage of time that your employees have spent making effective contributions to your organization
- Performance -- the quantity of the products, tasks or services that have been produced/provided
- Quality -- the percentage of acceptable products, tasks or services produced/provided by your workforce
Each of these factors plays a crucial role in your total output. Calculating these metrics individually and collectively can give you a better idea of where your organization needs to improve. And an employee productivity software will make doing so easier and more accurate.
2. Sales Growth/Revenue Per Employee
Every employee is essentially an investment. When you choose to invest in a certain individual, you want to see an ROI that proves they’re the right fit for the position.
Sales growth per employee or revenue per employee can give you a better idea of how much each employee is bringing in for your organization. This is often calculated by dividing the total number of sales or the total revenue by the number of employees.
3. Time/Cost Spent On Tasks and Projects
Time is money, and neither should be wasted when working on projects.
Monitoring how much you’re spending on employees to get tasks done and how much time employees are taking to complete tasks can show you areas of improvement that will save your organization both time and money.
The good news? There are plenty of productivity management tools and productivity apps that will allow you to see just how much time is being spent on an individual and collective level through a convenient productivity monitor.
4. Operational Efficiency
Operational efficiency is a metric that describes the ability of an organization to produce a greater number of products or services (output) while maintaining lower operational costs (input). This can be calculated by dividing operational expenses by total revenue.
This will allow you to determine where you can improve processes and reduce operational expenses to make your organization more efficient.
5. Customer Satisfaction
Customer satisfaction is what determines your success in business. But many organizations get caught up in other aspects of their operations and fail to collect sufficient data regarding customer satisfaction.
As an organization, you should always be looking to garner feedback from your customers to determine where products or services can be improved.
6. Employee Effectiveness
You will have set goals for each employee to ensure that they meet the desired output. Certain factors like time spent on tasks, quality of output, and how quickly they communicate with team members or clients will play a role in this metric.
Fortunately, you can use employee productivity software that supports you with this metric, giving you the insights needed to boost productivity.
Productivity Hacks Are Ineffective Without Data
Just like you can’t set goals without measurable milestones, you can’t seek to boost productivity without the proper productivity metrics. Productivity metrics help you determine whether or not the changes your organization is implementing are providing the proper response.
Use the guide above to set the metrics that will be most important for your organization and support your endeavors with employee productivity software that can help you track employee productivity more effectively.