Everyone knows that life has surprises and life has problems. The trick is to do what you can to make sure those problems are not surprises. If you are looking at your C-Store performance on a monthly basis, you may be well aware of that wisdom. As software developers who have worked for companies of all sizes and in many industries, our company has solved this problem for decades. Someone starts adding up the costs and decides a straight-forward, daily monitoring process is needed. Though the information requested may have been different, there were always two requirements for the tracking of their KPI’s
1. See the results of their specific KPI’s at any time
2. See it on one page
Bing defines KPI as follows:
DEFINITION: key per·for·mance in·di·ca·tor. NOUN
1.a quantifiable measure used to evaluate the success of an organization, employee, etc., in meeting objectives for performance: “key performance indicators show big improvements and delivery times have been reduced”
The past tense (i.e., ‘delivery times have been reduced’) that is used in the example of this definition is exactly what can cost a company money. KPI’s should be an ongoing measurement, especially if is KPI that is measuring an activity or goal that impacts income. These examples should read, “fresh-produce sales are up 19% daily compared to last week…” A constant watch is an effective and objective method to stop problems as they start. It is important to stop “revenue bleed” and shrinkage. Revenue bleed is lost money that could have been saved if only something happened sooner. For a C-Store company, that would be monitoring store activity that effects the customer’s buying decisions. It can also be due to not shopping your vendors for best products or hiring employees who think they deserve a $20 a week raise by taking money out of your register. By tracking KPI’s you control the bleed. People may steal and stores may not perform well, but when monitoring not for long.
Due to time and resource constraints, companies will typically wait for measurement results based on monthly financials as opposed to controlling them daily, and this is the difference between monitoring and reporting. With a constant check on performance, you have a much better chance of improving C-Store Performance. You can find and stop problems as they start, you can break bad habits that are about to begin, you can see opportunities when they are there for the taking and you can certainly eliminate those bad surprises at the end of the month, making life a little more easy for yourself.