Last time we looked at the questions to ask in order to determine what to measure for any given Accomplishment.  In Performance System Analysis (PSA) knowing what to measure and how to measure it are keys to success.  For example, you can not measure a sonic boom with a tape measure.

Today we’ll look at the “how” of measurement, starting with the questions to help identify the Specific Measures that will be used:

  • What data, facts, incidents, occurrences tell you that you are succeeding in this area of Accomplishment?
  • What facts, data, incidents, occurrences tell you that you are failing in this area of Accomplishment?
  • What relevant dimensions (Quality, Quantity, Cost, etc.) have been considered in the measures?
  • How will you know you are/are not achieving the Desired Accomplishment?

Below are possible areas for performance measures:


  • Safety incidents/ unsafe behaviors/ near misses
  • Violations or citations
  • Recordables
  • Lost time accidents

Quantity of Production or Output:

  • Production volume (units, pounds, etc.)
  • Sales volume (units, revenues, etc.)
  • Market share
  • Product mix

Timeliness of Output or Delivery:

  • Response time/ delivery when requested
  • Backlogs
  • Back orders
  • Lead time
  • Complaints and/or cancellations

Quality of Output:

  • % of production within specification
  • Errors
  • Rejects or scrap
  • Returns
  • Complaints and/or cancellations
  • Machine and/or system downtime

Labor Cost and Productivity:

  • Labor cost/unit produced
  • Labor cost/$ revenue
  • Units/effort hour
  • Time/transaction
  • Downtime hours/total hours
  • Overtime hours/total hours

Material or Equipment Cost and Usage:

  • Material cost/unit produced
  • Yield
  • Scrap and/or waste
  • Spoilage
  • Losses
  • Inventory levels, overstocks, shortages
  • Machine and/or system downtime


  • Turnover
  • Absenteeism
  • Grievances
  • Other work complaints
  • Promotion rates
  • Demographics/Diversity

Tip of the day:  Knowing what to measure and how to measure it are the keys to a superior Measurement System.



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