Dashboards Versus Scorecards

Posted by mmy Jun 6, 2010

You hear people talking about executive dashboards and executive scorecards. Sometimes it seems as if they are one and the same and other times it seems like they are different. Over the years I learned about the basic differences between the two by way of examples and definitions offered by people with varying degrees of experience and knowledge about this subject. So recently I did an internet search to see if I could find concrete definitions for scorecards and dashboards from a credible and authoritative source to clear up this matter.

Although I couldn't find one definitive source to give this issue absolute clarity, there were several good lengthy posts I read through, and the common denominator I found that differentiated dashboards and scorecards was:

Dashboards display information about a company at a given point in time that can be used to make better business decisions whereas scorecards tend to measure and compare actual performance results over a given time period versus desired results or benchmarks in that time period or results from a previous time period.

The following examples of metrics that would typically fall under a dashboard or a scorecard may help clear this up:


Dashboard MetricsScorecard Metrics

Location of a particular inventory item
Number of sales calls made
Current calls in queue
Names of SCBA trained employees
List price per product at a given time

Excess inventory in Q1
Sales closed versus quota
2009 Average call center queue time
Number trained for SCBA in 2009
Profits by product, year to year

Note that scorecard metrics can be used to determine executive bonuses while this is not as often the case with dashboards. Please reply with examples or definitions that you have run across that may help shed light on this subject.

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