KPI Reports

In a world in which data-driven decision-making separates industry-leading firms from the others, KPI reports are one example of how organizations can ensure that stakeholders have the relevant data and timely insights they need to make smarter decisions. Effective KPI reporting doesn’t just keep people informed, it’s an important early warning system. Executives and managers can keep an eye on existing initiatives and various aspects of the business, making sure that an organization or specific project is on-track and identifying problematic strategies demanding course correction. When accurate and properly aligned with an organization’s strategic goals, KPI reports can inspire both action and confidence in data, further encouraging the sort of fact-based decision-making that sets leaders apart from the rest.

Why firms use KPI reports and KPI dashboards

KPI reports and KPI dashboards, which provide a graphical, at-a-glance view of key metrics in real-time, provide decision-makers with an overview of company or departmental performance. They summarize large quantities of data in order to supply both internal and external stakeholders with the information they need to assess the effectiveness of current strategies. When done right, KPI reports motivate and empower managers to set meaningful goals and benchmarks, identify areas in need of improvement early, make tough but smart decisions, and stay agile. KPI reports and real-time data feeds keep data-driven organizations on track while interactive dashboards, which support data exploration, enable users to drill down and access more detailed information and insights when the situation requires.

What to include in KPI reports

A successful KPI reporting initiative starts with choosing the right KPIs. When defining your KPIs, you may want to consider the factors leaders currently use to manage the organization or department, and use these to define metrics that will be helpful in evaluating progress towards meeting specific objectives. And whenever corporate strategy or priorities change, make sure to review and update your KPIs to keep them relevant. Then, when presenting the KPIs in reports, you may want to observe the following best practices to ensure that readers get the most value from each report:

  • Provide clear definitions for and explanations of the formulas used to define the KPIs used in your report. A glossary of terms will help external parties better understand what is being measured.
  • Supply future targets, if possible, so that readers are better able to assess the potential for your current strategies to succeed and have a basis for evaluating future performance.
  • Include trend data to establish historical context and show how performance has either improved or deteriorated over time. This will aid the reader in assessing the effectiveness of existing strategies.
  • Avoid information overload. When possible, provide customized KPI reports for different audiences, filtering out unnecessary information so that readers stay focused on the key takeaway.

Using a modern BI and analytics solution for creating KPI reports

Today’s newest generation of BI solutions make KPI reporting easier—and your reports and dashboards more visually attractive and relevant. These easy-to-use, quick-to-deploy toolsets simplify and accelerate the process of data gathering and analysis through intuitive visual interfaces. With drag-and-drop functionality, users can create and customize reports in different formats fast and deliver KPI reports to consumers on the channels they prefer. With an intelligent BI solution at their fingertips, users can spin up eye-catching and effective data visualizations, build interactive dashboards for real-time monitoring, and publish in-depth reports for distribution and collaboration—all without unnecessary complexity or stress. Some platforms even provide support for more advanced analytics challenges including big data analytics.

Qlik Sense® makes building and distributing KPI reports simple and easy

With Qlik Sense, users can easily combine and prepare data, create smart, responsive visualizations, and build rich analytics applications and polished reports. With a unique Associative Engine, Qlik Sense indexes and understands every relationship in your data, letting users follow their curiosity. They can search, select, and drill down to find the information they need, exploring freely in any direction—without the limitations of query-based tools. And with Qlik Insight Bot, users of any skill level can ask questions about their data using natural language conversation.

Thanks to AI, and with support for advanced analytics including predictive analytics, Qlik Sense serves as an intelligent decision support system. Business users can mashup data from various sources, spot emerging trends, make predictions, and leverage context-aware insights suggestions and automation, allowing them to surface business-critical insights fast from large quantities of data. And they can do this within a governed, multi-cloud architecture that delivers scale, flexibility, and security.

With Qlik NPrinting®, users can create, manage, and distribute great looking reports in a variety of popular formats, including Microsoft Office and pixel perfect .PDF, leveraging data and analytics from Qlik Sense. Organizations can filter information to provide customized reports for each consumer, and centrally schedule and deliver KPI reports via email, web, and other channels.

Retire your legacy BI and reporting systems and use one platform for all your analytics and reporting tasks. Distribute the power of analytics to every member of your workforce and lead with data. Offering users industry-leading modern analytics capabilities and support for use cases ranging from self-service data discovery and visualization to custom and embedded analytics, Qlik is the only end-to-end data management and analytics platform built to transform your entire business.


Why are KPI reports important?

They are critical for businesses because they provide managers and other stakeholders of the organization with a clear picture of your company’s performance, well-being, and potential for growth. They help communicate the objectives of your business, inspire action and investment, and enable your managers to identify potential opportunities and challenges early, evaluate the success of existing strategies, and most importantly, course correct fast, if necessary.

What are the most important financial KPIs?

While the KPIs you choose will vary depending on your firm’s particular goals, here are some of the financial KPIs you should be tracking: gross profit margin, net profit margin, return on equity, return on assets, revenue growth rate, income sources, current ratio, return on investment, operating cash flow, working capital, and debt-to-equity ratio.

How do I prepare a KPI report?

First, you’ll want to define your goal or strategic objectives and the initiatives or projects that you are carrying out to achieve them. Then, you’ll need to select your KPIs, which are measures that enable the reader to evaluate your progress towards achieving your goal. A data visualization and analytics tool like Qlik Sense can help you collect and aggregate the necessary data to fuel these KPIs and create the graphs and other visualizations used to present them to the reader.

Learn more about Qlik’s modern analytics platform for the enterprise.

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Data Sheet

Advanced Reporting and Distribution