Reporting Performance: A Step-By-Step Guide For Business Leaders

Reporting Performance: A Step-By-Step Guide For Business Leaders
Last Updated: May 29, 2023

Reporting performance is essential for business stakeholders to inform them about the business' progress and the resources used to achieve its goals. Business performance measures how well your organization is doing by assessing how effectively you achieved your goals and comparing the outcomes of your actions to your goals.

Owners and managers can identify areas where their processes and systems might be improved for greater performance by assessing a business' output and examining how it is run. Business leaders must first build processes and performance measurements into their organizations to gather the necessary data.

Why is reporting performance important in a business?

Reporting performance is crucial for the following reasons:

Provides an overview of how the business is performing


Reporting performance will aid in the overall decision-making process and will not only measure your company's performance but also identify the areas that need improvement.

Improves communication between team members

Project managers and team leads can map team performance strengths and weaknesses and provide critical feedback by reporting performance. This helps the team maintain shared goals and a constant emphasis on finding solutions as a team for the project's success. Communication is easier and more open when performance report results are shared with your team. You also have more confidence when establishing the next stages.

Compares your performance with competing companies

A useful factor that may be used to determine the success of a project is contrasting your team's performance with that of others in the same sector. To remain competitive, one must engage in this procedure, also known as benchmarking. You may determine your team's market position, find gaps, and reproduce or exceed best practices in your company by using the performance reports of other teams as a guide.

Monitors the Workforce

Your employees' performance can also be included in a performance report. Reporting performance assists in managing employee performance, determining how well individuals perform and identifying improvement areas. This aids in the growth of your company overall as well as helping the staff perform better.

Helps to prepare external reports and attracts investment

Investors and their advisors can use performance reports to gather the required data to decide whether to invest in a company. A business might attract investors by reporting performance, especially if the business is doing well.


How to create an effective process for reporting performance


Choose a relevant framework/model for setting goals and reporting performance

The first and foremost step is to choose a strategic management tool or framework to help the business create and fulfil goals more quickly, effectively, and efficiently. The objective and key result (OKR) framework and Balanced Scorecard are common evaluation systems that grade the performance of the employees and the business at large.

Determine appropriate performance indicators

Key performance indicators, or KPIs, are one of the most important metrics for corporate performance reporting. KPIs are used to track the most important aspects of a company. Each KPI must have a corresponding target or goal; this is the goal that your company is attempting to accomplish. Set goals and work toward them while using key performance indicators to measure and track performance.

Address key value drivers

Performance metrics address the most significant KPIs and value-creating factors in a firm. You should be able to explain how crucial corporate resources have been maintained and expanded through time as a subsequent step. Key determinants of corporate value should be addressed by key performance indicators (KPI).

Provide measures relevant to business prospects

Businesses should also concentrate on leading performance indicators rather than just giving lagging indicators that only include historical performance. In addition to operational results, organizations should concentrate on metrics that track the status of plan implementation and risk management.

Align measures with investor decision making

KPIs focus on the particular areas of the business that present opportunities and threats. Such KPIs ought to be specific rather than general. Rather than attempting to address every problem and weakness, they should offer guidance on how certain areas of the company should be run.

Hold people accountable

Ensure everyone meets expectations if you want your performance reporting process to succeed. It is your responsibility as a manager to ensure that your team members are aware of and are carrying out their duties. Each KPI must be associated with at least one person who ensures the desired results are achieved. Accountability involves more than accepting responsibility when something goes wrong. It also involves ensuring team members are aware of their duties and carrying them out.

Related: 4 Tips to Hold Your Employees Accountable


How to Write a Business Performance Report

To create a performance report of your own, consider following these simple steps:

1.      Organize your data

Work in teams to gather the important information you need for your report. This may differ from one business to another, project to project, or report to report. Getting pertinent data often entails meeting with KPI custodians.

2.       Follow a template

Outlining your report is an excellent place to start, as it makes it simpler to feed in the pertinent data and information, whether you write your own or use professional templates provided by software solutions. Many other methods to structure performance reporting are available, but the fundamental stages below will provide you with a reliable template. Use only the parts of the suggested templates that apply to your report. When reporting performance, the following elements are usually included:

  • Introduction: The report's goals and intended audience are stated in the introduction.
  • Development: The report's topics and paragraphs with the most important data and findings.
  • Analysis: A section examining business performance. Current key issues analysis and current change requests analysis are included here. Include pertinent information and data to support your analysis and goal-setting as well.
  • Perspective: A segment that lists potential causes of observed performance trends.
  • The next step: Tasks and projects to be completed during the upcoming reporting period.
  • Proposal: A section indicating possible solutions for failures found or improvements
  • Any additional information relevant to the report or requested by stakeholders
  • Conclusion

3.      Write the report

It is advisable to start early to fulfil deadlines and prepare a complete, well-done performance report when reporting performance. Often, a group of individuals collaborates to create the performance report. For instance, the sales team may include information on revenue estimates, sales that have already been made, still pending sales, and data for future sales forecasts. The business leader will normally assemble the performance report from all the parts gathered or authored by different departments or co-workers.

4.      Proofread before sharing and ensure the report is exhaustive

Writing a thorough, pertinent, and understandable report is crucial when reporting performance. Take care to proofread your report several times thoroughly. To help you find any spelling, grammatical, punctuation, or formatting issues that a computer spellchecker could miss, think about printing a paper copy. Check all numbers, statistics, and figures twice. Depending on size, you might distribute your report to co-workers for review.

Related: What You Need To Know About Business Reporting Format 

When Should Performance Reporting Take Place?

Reporting performance is an ongoing endeavour that your company must regularly review because reporting performance is an open-ended process. In all likelihood, the timing of these reports will be determined by you, the company's leader, or management. Make sure the systems are in place to measure the performance of your firm in the manner you desire. Select the frequency you want to revisit these measurements and evaluate the targets.

Reporting performance is usually beneficial to a business. There is no predetermined period at which a report must be produced, so establish a schedule that works for you and your company's activities. Set new objectives for the upcoming performance report and re-evaluate your current targets and goals as you go. Be prepared to make changes to what doesn't work.


It takes more than just examining revenues and losses to determine whether or not your organization is successful. A wide range of variables influences your company's overall performance. You can always evaluate your company and make informed judgments when reporting performance.

Chido Madzogo

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