Outsource Magazine Issue 34 - (Page 48)

NUMBERS, NUMBERS EVERYWHERE... Many a governance body and service manager sees themselves as drowning in report data, but intelligence to inform decision-making and drive the business forward is elusive. How can we get to brief, succinct relevance that informs and drives performance? William Hooper, Oareborough Consulting William Hooper is a director of Oareborough Consulting, a consultant in business transformation and outsourcing. He seeks to make outsourcing and business transformation work in delivering the benefits expected. He is a regular columnist for Outsource online. S amuel Taylor Coleridge related his 'Rime of the Ancient Mariner' in which the grey-beard loon narrates his story of torture at sea after all his shipmates went down. Now you know how service managers came to be as they are. WHY IS REPORTING SUCH A PROBLEM? I have seen, and indeed found myself in the middle of, a number of service environments where nobody was in the least happy with the reporting provided. All data should be provided to support a purpose. Anecdotal evidence suggests that where the purpose and role is clear and stable, the reporting tends to be good too. The question of "how to ensure reporting is effective?" is thus addressed first by addressing clarity of purpose. In this article I shall pass over "informatics". Good design most definitely enhances the speed of assimilation and impact of information. In a small service or organisation, extensive work to generate elegant written and graphical reports will not be justified, and you will work with what your suppliers have readily to hand. In larger services, greater effort will be warranted. One of the best examples I have seen was from my days as an accountant. The CEO required a two-page letter on the state of the business each month. Although led by finance, it addressed aspects including HR and change programme progress. This brief presentation of the essential facts was supported by extensive data as raw material and was delivered through an interactive discussion, the written version later being widely circulated. PROBLEM 01 CLARITY OF PURPOSE There are many ways in which a customer may choose to cut the different purposes of governance between a number of bodies. Most end up using a broadly common model, whilst some find that because of the size, complexity or otherwise of their service it is appropriate to combine or separate these functions. However you choose to divide functions between various boards and meetings, each convening on its own schedule, each must have its terms of reference defined. Good terms are collectively exhaustive and mutually exclusive, so it is clear which matters are addressed by which bodies. The terms should also contain a pro-forma agenda. So if one is to review performance against the SLA, the reporting should contain current data to permit this. "Common sense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom." - Samuel Taylor Coleridge 48 ●● www.outsourcemagazine.co.uk http://www.outsourcemagazine.co.uk

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Outsource Magazine Issue 34

Challenges and Champions
Outsourcing in a Troubled Economic Environment
Richard Jones
High Stakes
In Transition
The Bigger Picture
Numbers, Numbers Everywhere...
NOA Round-Up
Struggling To Get Through?
International Commercial Disputes In Outsourcing Agreements
Is Infrastructure Necessary?
Global Freelance Platforms Grow Up
Trumping Price – Only with Best value
Kerry Hallard
Technology Investment in 2014
Water Will Always Find A Way
The Right Time Is Now
You, Robot?
The Legal View
Top Ten
NelsonHall Round-Up
Online Round-Up
The Deal Doctor
Inside Source
The Last Word

Outsource Magazine Issue 34