You can track whether your organization is reaching necessary work results through balanced employee objectives. The objectives represent the results you want to get through work. Achieving the objectives also fulfills corporate goals, which gives companies the opportunity to develop and grow.
Professional service companies base their developments on their staff. That is why this issue is especially important. When setting objectives it is crucial to make your employees aware of the importance of achieving their objectives.
The employees shouldn’t feel pressure because their work will be controlled and assessed. Instead, they should keep in mind that the objectives represent an element of their personal and professional development.
Employee Objectives – the Basics:
The objectives are related to the employee’s job description. Employee objectives are:
- Realistically achievable
- In tune with the job description from the work contract
The objectives are often conflicting. They shouldn’t be set too high, so they can’t demotivate the employees. Instead, they should always be reasonable.
The Time Frame of Setting the Objectives
Employee objectives are usually set once a year or biannually, and they are tracked continuously on a monthly level.
The final evaluation is usually conducted either quarterly or on a monthly level.
Finally, the objective time frame can match the time of the project, and the evaluation should take place immediately after the project is completed.
Typical Objective Variations
We will list the most common employee objectives, as well as the methods to set and track them.
Employee Objectives Relating to Corporate Culture
- Building and maintaining efficient business relationships with coworkers
- Creating and maintaining efficient business relationships with clients, supervisors, and external associates
- No criticism from external clients
Employee Objectives Relating to Advancing Leading and Managing Skills
Usually, employees in higher positions get these objectives, which include:
- Education in leadership and managing relationships with clients; reading relevant articles on the topic
- Employee satisfaction
- Helping younger coworkers with their tasks, educating and supporting them
- 1 conversation about objective and career development with all employees on a quarterly level
- Maintaining the overall knowledge level and transferring said knowledge to coworkers
- Organizing five educations per year regarding important topics
- Organizing 10 ad hoc 30-45 minute educations
Objectives Relating to the Implementation of Business Strategy and Business Procedures
Similar to the previous type of objective, these objectives are mostly for managers or directors:
- Support with strategy implementation and compliance
- Support with reaching the company’s budget and targeted KPIs
- Making sure there are no omissions due to not following the company procedures
- Regular reading of the strategy and procedures, initiating conversations about any unclarities
- Making sure the employees understand and respect the strategy and the written internal procedures
- 2 strategy and procedure educations
- 1 knowledge test through a case
Time Utilization Employee Objectives
Time utilization represents the degree to which the working hours are being used. In professional service companies, time utilization is measured as the percentage of billable hours within total hours worked. Usually, the employees in senior positions have a higher target for utilization, while juniors and partners have a lower target. Namely, partners should spend a lot of time developing the organization itself, which reduces the time they spend working on projects. On the other hand, juniors spend more time in training and education.
These goals are often tracked through time tracking tools or similar software solutions.
Employee Objectives for Project Supervision
- Correct risk identification in the performed work
- Timely and efficient control of the said work
- An audit of checklists through Trello focusing on key risks
- Giving valuable feedback to the employees and making sure the number of repeated mistakes reduces
- Monitoring the objectives of lower-level employees and helping them achieve their goals
- Ensuring the employees follow the methodology and procedures
Employee Objectives for Project Management
- Executive project planning and organization through Trello, communication with team members and clients
- Adequate deadline and project length management without unreasonable project extensions
- Regular filling of timesheets and other tools
- No omissions due to poor information flow, bad communication, poor duty and responsibility delegation, etc.
- Improving the flow of information and documents needed to provide the services; reducing misunderstandings among the staff and between the staff and the clients
Risk Management Employee Objectives
- A proactive approach to potential client risks
- Minimal omissions when identifying significant risks
- No omissions when communicating the identified risk to the supervisors
- Ensure all clients have a signed contract containing safeguard clauses or general conditions
Employee Objectives Related to Billability
These goals relate to the adequate management of the billable rate, as well as the optimization of billable hours.
- There should be 100 billable hours on average per month
- The real billable rate should be $90
- Increasing the number of work tasks that are billed to the clients
- Organize 30 qualified meetings with the high-class potential customers
- Sales deals with 10 new customers
- 90% customer retention rate
- Increase success in cross-selling activities and keeping relevant evidence (Value of new cross-selling at existing clients should be $6000, 5 sales of services to existing clients. Average product per client ratio should be 2.5 )
- Increase success in up-sell activities and keeping relevant evidence (Value of up-sell activities at exiting services to an existing client is 2500, 3 new up-sales, average product per client ratio 2.5)
Measuring the Objectives
The objectives can be measured quantitatively and qualitatively. The most common methodology for objective tracking is measuring them through key results. The concept of OKR management (Objectives and Key Result) came to be because of this.
The foundation of this methodology is setting a key result – a result that needs to be achieved, for every objective. When it comes to quantitative objectives the measuring is simple, as the results are evaluated quantitatively or financially. For example, a manager’s objective for the first quarter is to make deals with 10 new clients. In this case, you can measure objective achievement by tracking the number of new clients.
It is a bit more difficult to monitor the achievement of objectives that can’t be numerically expressed. We could look at customer relationship improvement, for example. In this case, it is necessary to introduce qualitative assessments. For example – does the employee have regular communication; how many times they’ve talked to the client, whether they’ve sent newsletters regularly, whether the client has complained, etc. These objectives are usually measured qualitatively by the manager. you can create a scale that shows expectation fulfillment, for example from 1 to 10.
This method of measuring would eventually result in each employee having a certain percentage of achievement of their objectives. However, not every goal carries the same weight. Hence, to calculate the total score, you should account for the weighted average of all objectives.
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