Dashboards are important communication and performance-management
tools. They offer a convenient place to organize vital information
into a graphical representation that is easy to use and understand.
There are five primary steps to successful dashboard creation.
Research learning metrics. The first step is to
learn what others have done first so you don't reinvent the wheel.
Identify macro-learning constructs. A
macro-learning construct is a small, well-balanced set of broad
learning classifications that summarize results.
Four of the major macro-learning constructs are
- Operational constructs that answer the question how much we
trained. It is mostly volume or activity data typically in a
learning management or registration system.
- Financial constructs answer the question what is the
benefit, cost, or income statement impact?
- Performance constructs answer the question how well we
trained. They look at results-oriented metrics.
- Cultural constructs answer the question how conducive is
our environment to training?
Build micro-learning indicators. Micro-learning
indicators are a set of quantifiable performance measures linked to
the macro-learning construct that are tracked over time.
The macro-learning indicators for the operational constructs are
- number of students trained
- instructor utilization rate
- e-learning utilization rate
- average class size
- staff-to-management ratio
- delivery mix (percent of activity allocated to new hire,
leadership, technical, and so forth)
- survey response rates
- class completion or cancellation rates.
The indicators for the financial constructs are cost-per-student
per day, cost as a percentage of payroll, budget to actual costs,
revenue growth, human capital contribution margin, productivity,
The indicators for the performance constructs include
- satisfaction scores
- instructor performance
- courseware quality
- learning effectiveness
- time-to-job impact
- business results link
The indicators for the cultural constructs are training
eligibility, average hours of training per employee, available
tuition reimbursement, management support, internal validation, and
Build a process to collect and report data.
Beginning with data that is credible and easy to gather will get
you started. Then you want to build a standard template store and
track data. The micro indicators should be tracked monthly and
reported quarterly to senior management, preferably as a trend
against actual results and against goals with some type of
red/yellow/green coding for analytic interpretation.
Design technology and templates. The final step is
to automate the collection, storage, processing, and reporting of
what you've built. Several learning analytics technologies out
there provide great tools to build dashboards, input or import
results, and track and trend data over time.