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Management Reporting: Ideas for Impact (Exception Reports)

June 22, 2021
Jun 22, 2021 7:00 PM

Welcome to our new blog series on Management Reporting: Ideas for Impact. Throughout this series, we'll share some different types of reporting along with benefits, drawbacks, and other considerations.  Our hope is that this stimulates some ideas on how you might improve management reporting within your organization.We'll start with looking at one of my favorite types of reports, exception reports.  Exception reporting can come in many names, such as top/bottom, high/low, or most/least. Simply stated, these reports are all some form of ranking to highlight the biggest successes and opportunities. The example above is the output from one of the algorithms that our Performitiv platform runs.

In this case, the rankings are based on standard deviations from the mean of the sample set, and includes benchmarks for reference.  This is meant to provide quick insight into which locations are seeing better or worse performance.  You could apply this same process to any attribute, such as courses, instructors, programs, learner demographics, or others.  There are some considerations with this type of report:

Benefits.  This type of report makes it quick and easy to find areas of focus.  Color coding and inclusion of internal/external reference points helps to illustrate the extent of differences.

Drawbacks.  Depending on how many values you have (EX: you want to look at courses but your organization has over 500 of them), the report may not include everything, which some people struggle with.  There are many different ways to rank your attributes - Net Impact Score, NPS Rating, Impact, Delivery, etc.  There are also different ways to rank - pure scores, n-counts, standard deviations.  It's important to establish an approach and be consistent with that approach.

Other Considerations.  Many platforms don't produce this data in a clean way, so leverage resources on your team to help build a consistent and scalable way to execute this type of report.  Although this sample view includes several pieces of information, exception reporting can also be simplified and included in a dashboard, as well.  Below is an example of what that could look like.

We'll continue looking at different types of reports each week, but if there is something specific you are interested in having me post about, don't hesitate to reach out at Well and Happy Reporting!

Chris LeBrun
Director, Professional Services