Are you using the right metrics to measure your company success?

Key Performance IndicatorKey Performance Indicator – Resources & Outputs

A company’s resources include: their people, their plant and equipment and the hours available for production. In a well-financed business, resources also include cash and working capital. Ask yourself, what are your unit outputs or sales from your employed resources?

Outputs include:

  • Physical units produced/sold
  • Purchased units resold
  • Machine hours sold
  • Project hours sold
  • Information reports sold
  • Customer Acquisitions
  • Other defined unit outputs

Have you defined all of your resources and outputs? Do you understand how to measure the performance of each resource with its related outputs? Are you actually doing this—or just occasionally giving the idea a passing thought?

Think in terms of units for the outputs. What is your client/customer acquisition cost? Have you calculated dollars per unit produced/sold and the unit cost for COGS, overhead and margins? Do you understand how to interpret these results?

If you are doing this kind of analysis and tracking the trends, do you believe the veracity of the results—or is there some doubt?

Many businesses produce some very good financial results, but have not mastered the art of measuring how productive their resources are, and the trend over time.

CFO-Pro specializes in defining and measuring performance indicators, and enhancing your understanding of how these indicators can affect your financial results.

This is not typically a costly exercise since all the information needed is available. It just needs to be surfaced and inter-connected to provide some very valuable trending insights.

Please feel free to call or email me to discuss your situation.

Metrics to Watch in Creating Company Value

key metrics and strategiesThere have been several in-depth studies that analyzed the financial performance of hundreds of companies around the world. Insights were provided by these companies into the key metrics and strategies used by the best performers. The following were found to be the most sustainable value creators, and where focus is concentrated in those companies successfully creating value. The key numbers to watch are:

  1. Sales
  2. Net income
  3. Cash flow from operations
  4. Total assets
  5. Total liabilities
  6. Total equity

Using these six key numbers, four ratios are tracked and trended:

  1. Asset turnover (revenue/assets)-the higher the turnover, the better utilization of assets experienced.
  2. Profit margin (net income/revenue)-the greater the margin, the more profits available to fund growth.
  3. Cash-flow yield (cash flow from operations/net income)-the higher the yield, the more success enjoyed in managing working capital (ie., current assets minus current liabilities).
  4. Debt-to-equity (total liabilities/total equity)-the higher the ratio, the more of other peoples’ money (leverage) being used to finance growth.

Successful organizations do well on all these numbers. If you are not doing well on the ratios, then drilling down into the six key numbers is needed.

The entire management team needs to understand how the ratios and underlying key numbers connect to value creation.

Standards of performance can be created by looking at historical numbers over time, which will reveal ranges and trends. Then look for comparable measures within your industry to see how you fare against industry peers. Follow this up by setting some annual targets for 1 to 5 years. In other words, “do what the big dogs do” whether you are local or national in scope, and whether you are for-profit or not-for-profit.

This sets the discipline for making good decisions with the goal being to achieve outstanding long-term return on investment.

Your present performance measures may have defects; and there may be no quick remedies. CFO-Pro can provide a strategic perspective on your financial performance measures. If you are interested in connecting the strategy of your company with the financial reports, and to speak to how your company intends to create value, please contact me directly at or 630-269-7646.