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25 Sep, 2013
The CPO should be the interpreter of cause-and-effect relationships and theengineer of Modeling Data Management as well.
Companies that do not develop a CPM initiative in a coherent map of the main business components, their mutual influences and diagrams cause and effect, such as the Balanced Scorecard, can not expect a different result from the simple viewing a list of KPIs.
Obtaining a series, even rich, of poorly linked or inconsistent indicators will produce exactly the opposite result than expected, it complicates the understanding of situations without being able to capture the identification of talent and possible actions for improvement. The CPO shall identify the relationships between indicators that represent different situations, selecting only those who best interpret the mechanisms of business evolution.
Quality, Timing and Relevance are the key factors of the CPO. CPM projects are easier for those companies that have a solid data warehouse architecture. This simplifies the integration of different information sources, the combination of measures and especially the research of the most relevant data for every specific need.
Indeed, most part of the efforts are often focused on the data research, in order to find the one that is most consistent with the structure of the indicator to produce and at the same time is as easy to capture and make available. For this reason it is important for BI workers to join the CPO staff, who are skilled in handling databases and infrastructure that will allow full access.
The CPO is also entitle to be the communicator of change management: engage a culture of Performance Management is complicated by uncertainty that often occurs when responsibilities and management changes should be defined. Sometimes the triggers are IT-centric, while in other cases are Controlling-centric. Surely there is no fast lane, but even more, you can not define a priori, you need to find a third way. Both choices, if "polarized", lead to consolidate a separate relationship, involving distance between IT and Business, which has generated many problems in the past among those who should provide the logical model and those who should ensure the data consistency.
Experience teaches that the creation of a permanent staff, that is evolving compared to the former roles, is highly effective both in the design phase, resulting in that natural process of continuous improvement. At this stage, the presence of CPO in the Central Steering Committee can appropriately evaluate the resources involved and facilitate the implementation of decisions to be taken.