Project Management KPIs and Dashboards

Jawad Ahmad


Jawad Ahmad

Project Management KPIs and Dashboards

Table of Contents

Are you facing issues in the execution of the project plan and worried about how to properly track the project data? The project management KPIs and dashboards are very helpful tools to help project managers in this situation.

Therefore, project managers need to learn about project management KPIs and Dashboards.

In this article, an introduction to the project management KPIs and dashboards will be presented. Also, project management metrics and KPI targets will be briefly discussed.

Moreover, the guidelines to create a project management KPIs dashboard with examples will be discussed.

Related Article: Free Simple KPI Template XLS | Project Management KPI Excel

Project Management KPIs Featured Image

Project Management KPIs

Project management is a gigantic field that involves more than 49 processes to be managed efficiently and effectively. The proper definition, planning, execution, monitoring and control of the project management processes are very important to ensure the success of a project.

However, every process of project management plays an important role in the success of the project. Therefore, it is important to perceive their discrete and consolidated impact on the project quality, schedule, performance, budget, resources, and deliverables.

So, the project managers need to have an in-depth interpretation of these processes. Project managers must ponder on the following questions about all the processes:

  • What are the steps for the definition of the process?
  • How to plan for the process?
  • Which strategy is good to use to track the process?
  • How the process will be monitored effectively?
  • What are the steps to control the process?

The project managers tactfully answer the above questions to figure out the controllable parameters of the process. Therefore, the project management process key performance indicators or KPIs are identified, monitored, tracked, and controlled.

Project Management KPIs

A good understanding of the key performance indicators is very important before going into the details. So, the key performance indicators are the quantitative values of the processes that are valuable to monitor and control for the success of the process.

However, project managers monitor these parameters or metrics from time to time over the whole project life-cycle. Moreover, the key performance indicators of a process keep on changing with the progress of the project.

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Project Management Dashboards

The project managers make use of the dashboards that present all the project management KPIs for quick and easy visualization to monitor and track. A project management KPI dashboard is a visual representation of the project management KPIs include important metrics of the processes.

So, the project management team uses the project management KPIs dashboard for daily decision making keeping in view the latest situation. As the dashboard provides the real-time data of the processes. Therefore, any difficulty in the execution process is identified in real-time and avoided to become an issue.

Moreover, the project managers use project management KPIs as a medium of communication for the real-time information of processes to keep all the team on the same page.

Project Management Metrics and KPI Dashboards

The project team identifies project management metrics to frequently assess, monitor, track, and control. However, the project progress, success, and profitability are assessed by monitoring and controlling these metrics.

Although, there are several project management metrics and KPIs. A few of them are very distinct to the nature, scale, and type of project. However, general project management metrics are:

  • Actual Cost (AC)
  • Planned Value (PV)
  • Earned Value (EV)
  • Cost Variance (CV)
  • Scheduled Variance (SV)
  • Cost Performance Indicator (CPI)
  • Return on Investment (ROI)
  • Gross Profit Margin
  • Resources Utilization

KPI Dashboards

As already explained earlier, the project management KPI dashboards are the visual demonstration of the process quantifiable values. So, as the project progress through different stages, the KPI dashboards keep on changing and don’t stay static or fixed.

However, the purpose of these dashboards is to summarize the important information about the project process at a specific time frame.

Therefore, the project managers prefer to use the KPIs dashboards that are easy to edit and customize. So, to choose a different set of information to display on the dashboard at different stages of the project lifecycle.

Project Management KPI Dashboards

A simple project management KPIs dashboard includes information about project health, schedule, progress, and issues.

So, the health part of the display includes the key performance indicators in the form of consumed resources, elapsed time, potential risks, and open issues.

However, the schedule section displays information about the tasks. Like how many tasks are completed? What tasks are in-progress and what is coming next?

Similarly, the project progress module is used for monitoring parameters like the achievement of milestones and goals.

Moreover, the issues section display and track the status of open issues of issue tracking spreadsheet. Therefore, the issues section of the project KPIs dashboard includes information about the resolved and open issues. Also, it defines the priority of issues resolution based on their severity and impact.

Project Management KPI Targets

The project management KPIs are specific for each process. Therefore, these KPIs are used to monitor and control the process deliverables. However, the important function is to recognize the best key performance indicators for each process.

Although, project managers use several strategies for the identification of process key performance indicators. Typically, the project team uses a brainstorming technique for this purpose.

However, keeping in view the target of project management KPI helps the project team in the identification process. So, the most common targets of project management KPIs are project timeline, quality, and budget management.

Although the KPI targets can be set individually, these all are interlinked and collectively participate in the success of the project.

Project Management KPI Targets

So, the project timeline target focus on the key performance indicators of project scheduling, task management, resource management, and risk management sections.

Project Schedule

Similarly, the project quality targets are set in the process of project tracking, monitoring, and control sections. Whereas, the project budge targets the KPIs relevant to the process of cost management, budget tracking, cost control, and funds management.

Project Quality

Moreover, the project management KPI templates are readily available for almost all the project processes. Typically, the professionals of project management develop these templates using MS Office Suite, or Google Sheets.

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Guidelines to Create the Project Management KPIs Template

It is essential to design a framework for the creation of a project management KPIs template. Also, it is equally important to analyze what performance indicators are critical to monitor and control?

Therefore, the project managers’ focus is to choose those indicators that positively contribute to the success of the project.

Moreover, the project management professionals recommend using the strategy referred to as “SMART”. Although, it is a performance measurement technique. However, very helpful in the recognition of process key performance indicators.

SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based

The acronym SMART is the abbreviation of specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based.

Therefore, the following guidelines can be followed for the identification of project management KPIs. So, a good project management KPIs template can be easily created.

  • Good perception and understanding of the project objectives.
  • Definition of the project success metrics.
  • Recognition of potential stakeholders.
  • Selection of the best tool for monitoring and tracking the project performance.
  • Agreement on the timeline to analyze and determine project success or failure.

The project management KPIs must be designed in relevance to the strategies adopted in the project for performance measurement. Moreover, the project management KPIs should answer the critical 7W’s for all the project stages.

Similarly, these KPIs must be designed to empower the project team. Also, to provide the best information about project performance, progress, quality, and life-cycle.

Therefore, the project managers use this project management KPIs template to fulfill all the purposes well.

Project Management KPIs Dashboard

Examples of Project Management KPI Dashboards

The project management KPI dashboards are used in almost all types of projects and businesses. However, what information is available on the display is relevant to the type of project process or business function.

Construction KPIs Dashboard

Several tasks are being a performance at a time on a construction site. So, the project team greatly focuses on monitoring the essential functions of a construction project.

Moreover, the construction activities need the attention of management for functions of cost management, resources management, HR management, budget management, etc.

Therefore, a very large list of KPIs available for the construction project. Most include cash balance, actual working days, task completion ratio, labor cost, and accident rate.

However, the change orders, client satisfaction, cost predictability, profitability, and ROI can also be included on the construction KPIs dashboard.

Production KPIs Dashboard

The production team uses the projection KPIs dashboard daily and in real-time on the production floor. However, it includes a different set of information on display as per the product type.

Whereas, a simple production KPIs dashboard includes the following information on the display:

  • Production Volume
  • Order Volume
  • Active Machines
  • Sales Revenue
  • Top 5 Products
  • Downtime
  • Returned Items by Reasons

Although, a tabular dashboard is preferred. As it efficiently helps in tracking, monitoring, and controlling the output parameters.

Sales KPIs Dashboard

The sales team of a project or business display the sales related information on the sales KPIs dashboard. Typically, it involves the values of sales target, achievement, revenue, profit, and costs.

Also, the sales team makes use of statistical tools for the analysis of sales revenue, cost breakdown, incremental sales, and accumulated revenue.

Moreover, the sales KPIs dashboard also includes information about the sales team’s success in terms of opportunities won and leads created.

However, the ultimate purpose of the sales KPIs dashboard is to display the relevant information in the best visual way to assist in the achievement of target and analysis.

HR KPIs Dashboard

The HR department of the project or business uses the human resource KPIs dashboard to visualize the performance of HR functions.

As the role of the human resource department is to make sure the availability of the best talent for the required tasks at the right time. However, many activities require keen attention of the HR department for fulfillment.

Therefore, the HR KPIs dashboard displays information such as total salary, average salary, total benefits, average age, gender ratio, permanent rate, turnover rate, and absenteeism rate.

Moreover, the total headcount, hired, and open positions information should also be included on the HR KPIs dashboard.

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In Short, the project management KPIs are very critical parameters of the project processes to properly monitor, track and control.

Therefore, project management professionals recommend using the KPIs dashboard to improve the effectiveness and productivity of the process.

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