Big Data

5 essential dashboard metrics for PMOs

Every project management office has different ways of working, skills and expectations, but most expect and are required to provide business leaders with these five important dashboard metrics.

Image: iStock/Kerkez

Project management office dashboards are vital in helping business leaders and other key stakeholders stay up to date on project and portfolio performance metrics. Although there are numerous types of metrics, these five should be included in regular at-a-glance dashboard reporting. 

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1. Customer satisfaction index

Usually, on a scale of one to 10, every PMO should measure this as the ultimate metric. This metric is typically gathered through customer surveys and provides insight into how happy customers are with project deliverables and team performance. The customer satisfaction index is a direct indicator of how well project teams have performed.

Other related ways of gathering information about customer satisfaction can include questionnaires, customer loyalty programs, complaints, referrals, increased business from customers and more. 

2. Project completion

This metric can mean different things to different companies and PMOs. For some, it can be related to the number of quality products delivered to a customer within a specified time. For others, it might be the level of service provided to help a client meet their goals. There are two keys to developing and meeting this metric; clearly defining what successful completion means and making goals SMART (simple, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound). 

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3. Resource utilization

Ensuring all of your organization’s resources are effectively and efficiently used is one of the most critical aspects of project management. This means being able to report all available resources, how much each resource is being utilized and each resource’s remaining bandwidth. Resource utilization lets everyone know which resources are over-allocated or underutilized and makes it easier to shift resources around. Resource utilization = planned working hours (bookings)/available hours, and is a vital metric that shouldn’t be overlooked.

4. Return on investment  

Every business wants to ensure the money being spent generates a good return on the investment. PMOs are no different. Portfolio managers also answer to business leaders about ROI. They need to provide executives with access to this dashboard metric at a glance to assure them that funds are responsibly allocated and spent on worthwhile projects. The calculation for a project’s ROI = ((project’s financial gain or loss – project’s cost) / project’s cost) X 100. ROI data helps executives and PMO leaders identify which projects within a portfolio are worthwhile and which may need to be re-evaluated or scrapped altogether. 

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5. Team productivity and satisfaction

One of the metrics that can be overlooked is how teams feel about their work, the project environment and the PMO leadership. Since teams are an essential part of managing projects, it makes sense for business and PMO leaders to know at all times how well their teams are doing, engagement levels, and how much buy-in exists. Team satisfaction levels can be measured using quantitative data such as team productivity metrics that indicate how well teams work together. Qualitative data such as surveys and questionnaires can also gauge how teams are feeling about projects. This type of data should be made available on PMO leadership and executive dashboards. 

Identifying and measuring these key metrics requires evaluating and implementing the best project dashboard tool. Here’s more about how to select dashboards that improve KPI tracking and increase project success rates.

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