Keying In on KPIs

Taking the time to establish annual success metrics for your in-house agency may not sound like fun to a creative team, but it can reap rewards throughout the year—particularly when it comes to managing clients. Nothing boosts success better than clearly defined key performance indicators (KPIs) that are well communicated throughout your organization.

Start by developing three KPIs that must be met on every project. Make these KPIs known to your clients as well as all members of your project team. Put every client request through this “filter” at the outset, and make the necessary adjustments to your approach before work begins. Interactions with clients will be easier and more productive because both of you are aligned on the same performance measures.

KPIs may differ by function across on your in-house team. Account managers and designers, for example, perform very different tasks and therefore require different indicators to measure their success. Assessing KPI results can be tricky too, so you should try to aim for quantitative rather than qualitative measures.

You might establish a certain number of creative rounds on your projects as one KPI, and on-time delivery as another. The account team may be responsible for delivering the strategy/creative brief on time and holding the client accountable for meeting their scheduled dates.

When evaluated as a whole, project success can be viewed quantitatively and qualitatively—did the schedule run over because of design changes and author’s alterations? Or did the clients dither and change their minds? When you have clear data to review with your clients, the conversation about how to work together more effectively becomes much easier.

Does your in-house agency use KPIs? How has the data you’ve gathered influenced team performance? How has it influenced your client relationships?

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