Tracking your IT department’s metrics and KPIs are great ways to parse through all the data you’ve got on your team’s operations. These numbers indicate what’s working, what’s not, and where significant work still needs to be done.
In short, these numbers tell the real story behind your business decisions.
But what exactly is the story that your metrics are telling? Are they actually interesting and helpful indicators? Or, do they end up as a mess of frivolous numbers that ultimately mean little to nothing?
Your IT team can track the right metrics by prioritizing KPIs that reflect the most critical information for both your department and your business as a whole. Since every organization is different, this often means thinking outside-the-box.
Remember: your metrics should encourage change and improvement within your department. They need to go beyond presenting an overly-detailed, confusing snapshot of what you do. Instead, they should serve as a guide to show where and how changes can benefit your operations.
Think less Ulysses and more The Giving Tree. Instead of telling a simple story through complex vocabulary, make sure your metrics are easily understandable yet compelling.
That said, how exactly do you do that? And which metrics should your team focus on following? Here are four IT-related KPIs that can present surprisingly insightful information about your department’s success.
1. Variability of Application Performance
The chances are that you already have strong KPIs to measure your operations. From online application performance to average maintenance time, you may think you’re covered. However, unless you’re tracking the variability of application performance, you’re not.
Performance variability is best defined as the change in performance for anyone device or operation. While small levels of variability (about 10 percent) are to be expected, more drastic variations are a sign that there’s something wrong.
You should measure performance variability for all major software and hardware that your team oversees, as well as that of your own employees.
If there’s a high level of variability, it’s time to look into what’s going. You may find unexpectedly outdated or inefficient equipment, computers, or print devices that should be retired or replaced. There might also be a need to better educate employees on how to create a more efficient, consistent workplace environment.
2. IT Budget Variance
What are your actual costs vs. budgeted costs?
Carefully review your budget variance for both direct expenses, like salaries, and inter-company expenses (allocated from other departments) as a way to determine where you’re over- or under-budget.
Keeping track of this allows you to determine whether or not IT is allocating resources appropriately, and where you’re off-base. It also lets you build a long-term picture of how you’re using your budget. This will give you significant ammunition for further budget negotiations.
With a few quarters of information showing how the IT departments have come under budget on essential projects, you have substantial leverage in negotiating more resources from the CEO.
3. Project Satisfaction and Post-Project Analysis
If you’re not sending out post-project surveys to any participating employees, you’re missing out on important data that helps you understand your IT department’s success.
More studies are showing that employee satisfaction may be your most important metric to track. The results of these surveys allow you to quantify team satisfaction on a project-by-project basis. It’s also a great way to prove your value and commitment to your company and your team’s happiness.
One idea is to create a questionnaire for employees to fill out post-project, which may or may not be anonymous depending on your specific team (anonymous surveys might be more honest). With every question, provide employees with a scale between one and five to measure satisfaction—one is least satisfied, and five is most satisfied.
Also, don’t forget to ask the IT team to fill out the questionnaire as well. Even if they were less involved than others, they’ll have valuable insights to bring to the table on how you can better streamline future projects, manage time, and increase productivity.
With this information, you can track where you can improve, why your most successful projects worked, and why others didn't.
4. Time Spent on Help Desk Tickets and Tasks
For most IT teams, seemingly endless help desk tickets are just a part of everyday work life. Sure. You’re likely keeping track of how many of these tickets come through and are completed. But what are you doing to monitor how much time is spent on tasks and what those tasks are?
For example, did you know that almost 1 in 4, or about 23%, of all help desk calls are printer related?! That’s a massive amount of time that most teams would rather use elsewhere.
Once you’ve determined precisely what that metric is, it’ll be easier to decide how to cut the time dedicated to print devices down by perhaps updating your equipment, educating employees on best print practices, or hiring a managed print service provider.
By following KPIs like these, you can more accurately see how your team’s time is currently allocated. Now you’ll have a clearer snapshot of your current processes and can best determine how to streamline your time and resources.
Ready to make your company’s workflow more efficient in no time? Then take a look at our eBook, 6 Steps to Recharge Your Managed Print Process. This guide offers great tips on making the most out of your IT department’s management for every print device.
Or, if you’re looking for an expert managed print partner who will help take your IT team’s success to the next level, contact imageOne! With a free, 15-minute Discovery Call, we’ll talk about how our expertise can save you time, money, and so much more.