What is Business Monitoring?

Business monitoring is the practice of tracking and analyzing the operations and performance of a business over a set period of time. To conduct proper monitoring, a business will:

  • Create specific goals or key performance indicators (KPIs), both short- and long-term;
  • Identify and implement the strategies needed to achieve those goals;
  • Track and review the progress at regular intervals.

As part of these efforts, businesses will typically establish a working team of senior leadership and other involved stakeholders to help oversee the monitoring efforts and meet regularly to discuss its progress.

Business monitoring is a key aspect of effective operations, and one indicator of a business’ ongoing success. Enterprises that cannot set clear goals and routinely compare their performance against those goals are going to struggle to thrive in a competitive marketplace.

Types of business monitoring

Business monitoring best practices can be applied to a variety of situations and business needs.

Process monitoring

Process monitoring compares the performance of systems, strategies, and workflows to gauge efficiency and reduce or eliminate redundancies or inefficiencies.

Performance monitoring

Performance monitoring assesses overall performance in one or more business areas, including employee output. It shows a business where it is falling short in meeting its core business deliverables and highlights critical areas for improvement.

Financial monitoring

Financial monitoring tracks a company’s spending, comparing actual expenditures to predicted budgets. It identifies where cost overruns or wasteful spending has occurred, and works to minimize financial outlays.

Organizational monitoring

Organizational monitoring looks at a company’s human capital and the way organizational teams are planned, developed, and structured. It involves reviewing the effectiveness of team communication and collaboration at all levels of a company.

Progress tracking

Progress tracking, also known as progress validation, focuses on the progress a company is making toward meeting its goals. It can allow stakeholders to stay updated on daily operations while tracking overall productivity.

Benefits of business monitoring

Proper business monitoring brings numerous benefits to an enterprise.

Greater efficiency

Monitoring helps a business create ongoing operational standards and frameworks to achieve those standards, which can help to improve the efficiency of day-to-day performance. It can also identify inefficiencies that previously went unnoticed.

Cost savings

By streamlining and standardizing processes and eliminating inefficiencies, businesses can recognize cost savings as employees can work more effectively with fewer barriers. Monitoring also helps identify potential problems early, before they grow and potentially cause greater financial losses.

Transparency and visibility

Monitoring promotes more visibility for employees and leaders into how the business operates, including its strengths, its weaknesses, and its opportunities. This kind of transparency helps everyone understand their own productivity and empowers them to have a greater sense of ownership in the business.

Clearer insights into business needs

Proper monitoring practices help a business better identify both issues and solutions. With clear, actionable information based on data, businesses can focus on what they really need, without guesswork, and make a plan for continuous improvement.