Top CEO’s Use OKR Software to Track Progress for Accountability

In his New York Times bestseller, “Measure What Matters,” author John Doerr emphasizes the fact that OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) are not static. Unlike annual MBOs, they are not of the “set ’em and forget ’em” variety. OKRs can be adapted over time, even deleted should conditions dictate.

How do top CEOs know when to adapt an OKR, when to add to an existing OKR, or even delete one? They implement a system of constant monitoring and reporting on progress through frequent Check-Ins between managers and contributors, and regularly scheduled team meetings. What enables this continuous feedback loop that identifies obstacles and roadblocks in real-time? Read on to see how a dedicated OKR Software platform facilitates the process.

One of the Key Functions of an OKR Dashboard is to Quantify Progress and Red Flag “at Risk” Key Results

Top CEOs are installing dedicated OKR Software platforms to enable the methodology. Although we say OKRs are a simple goal-setting system that doesn’t mean they can be implemented through general purpose software. Doerr provides an example in his book of a Fortune 500 company attempting to implement OKRs through a Microsoft Office execution, “all 82,000 employees dutifully recorded their OKRs in Word files. A move to quarterly OKRS would require over 320,000 files!

Conversely, a dedicated OKR Software platform is far more robust and capable of scale for any sized company. OKR Software is designed to handle both OKRs and CFRs, the Conversations, Feedback, and Recognition features that give OKRs their human voice.

A sophisticated OKR platform will include automated update reminders and tracking of compliance. During frequent Check-Ins contributors update their progress toward their quarterly Objectives. Through Conversations with their managers contributors also provide bi-directional feedback. What roadblocks or obstacles need to be addressed, in real-time? What course-corrections are required to get an Objective back on target? The most sophisticated executions even provide senior management visibility to all “at risk” Objectives on one screen.

Two best practices utilized at Google in their OKR program, are:

  1. Designating an OKR Shepherd to monitor compliance and prod contributors
  2. Scoring OKRs at the end of each quarter

For optimum efficiency, everyone in the organization does OKRs, everyone. Scoring is an important element of continuous performance improvement as learnings regarding what was done well, what was not, and what can be improved upon are integrated into subsequent quarter’s OKRs. All organizations improve over time when using the OKR system.

We hope this discussion of how to monitor, track, and adjust through OKR Software was helpful.

Do you manage a company or teams (either as a CEO, a senior executive, a middle manager or even a front-line manager)? Do you set and track objectives? Does aligning employee performance to business goals matter, and are you responsible for driving results? If so, please check out a live demo of Atiim OKR & Goals Management Software and we’d love to hear what you think about it. Thank you!


Image Credit: Stockvault

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