Last week we posted about KPI Dashboards and Cloud Analytics for Dynamics GP (Great Plains) (Part 1 of 2) LINK . Hope you had a great Thanksgiving Weekend, to kick off the week, we would like to share Part 2 of 2, with a focus on implementing KPIs within your organization as a means to help you get more out of your investment in Microsoft Dynamics GP (Great Plains) with Microsoft Power BI. Link to Video below for connecting to your GP on-prem or cloud data.
What makes a great Power BI dashboard and set of KPIs?
Most KPI’s and related visualizations seen on a dashboard (graphics, numbers, pie charts, maps, bar graphs) represent specific metrics. Each metric can tell its own story and together with other related metrics on the same dashboard, can tell a broader and more complete story, including storytelling elements such as a timelines, cause and effect relationships, and a shared context.
Each KPI on your dashboard should follow the M-C-A method for KPIs; an acronym representing: Measurable, Common understanding and Actionable.
Great KPIs require all three (M-C-A) and typically start with a Measure represented by a $, # or %. The measures should be supported by a Common understanding of the source of the data, the timeline represented, the method of calculation, and the desired targets. Periodically our consultants will host a cross-functional team meeting to assist clients in reaching an internal agreement on specific measures such as % Available Inventory. Finally, great KPIs should be Actionable. Actionable refers to the underlying business commitment to keep a pulse on business performance and to hold specific people accountable for the results. Actionable also refers to the documented set of future actions that will be used to adjust the ‘people, processes, or technology’ if the KPI targets are missed.
Supporting User Adoption of Dashboards and KPIs
Once the dashboards and KPIs are designed and published using Microsoft Power BI, there is a need to ensure that the business users are able to embrace and accept these dashboards within their daily practices. Without adoption, your team will be hard-pressed to achieve any positive action and performance improvements if the dashboards are not used.
Borrowing from our Project Managers at Endeavour Solutions, user adoption is best supported by facilitating three key inputs: Knowledge, Attitude and Practice, or what has also been referred to as reaching the user’s head, heart and hands. Our lead Consultants and Project Managers often include a change management plan (communications and training) that strives to anticipate and address potential user gaps such as the following:
- Knowledge of what the change is, including the difference between the old and the new.
- Attitude towards the change, sometimes boiling down to either: WIIFM – “what’s in it for me”, or addressing any issues of ‘trust’ related to the questionable success of past changes.
- Ability to Practice, test, trial, and live through the change. From a Dashboard and Power BI perspective, this would involve a short training session and clear set of communications on what the KPI’s mean, how they are calculated, desired thresholds, future targets and the actions that can be taken to improve results.
Dashboards and KPIs serve to keep a view of specific tactics, keeping a scorecard on the actions and programs that are implemented to support your organization’s efforts and strategic goals. We’ve found that the ease of deployment, when using Microsoft Power BI, has been greatly increased, and thus reducing the cost of deploying Dashboards and KPIs within your organization.
Watch an instructional training video and demo on how to build your first Power BI dashboard with Microsoft Dynamics GP for presenting Sales results using Fabrikam data.
Scott Jorgens, GP Support North
ERP Software Blog profile
About GP Support North -
GP Support North is a large team of GP consultants at Endeavour Solutions, dedicated to supporting clients using Microsoft Dynamics GP (Great Plains) ERP. We are your safe-haven for long term GP support and consulting services. We will not force you to change platforms, but if and when you are ready, we can help migrate you to the cloud.
We love Dynamics GP (Great Plains) and have more than 550 active clients across North America predominately in the USA and Canada. Over the years, our team has been named multiple times to the Microsoft President’s Club – The top 5% of Microsoft Partners Worldwide.