Many RJMetrics users choose to enhance their dashboards by comparing actual company performance to predefined goals. For example, the report below reveals how a company’s actual revenue is comparing to their goals.

In this tutorial, we will show you how to upload information about your company’s goals and build such a dashboard.

Step 1 – Set your goals

The first step is to set your performance goals for a particular metric: e.g. revenue, repeat orders, pageviews or any other kind of event.

To do this, you can simply create a new spreadsheet document (i.e. using a spreadsheet software such as Excel or Google Doc) with at least three columns: “ID”, “date” and “goal”.

The “ID” column is simply a unique primary key that identifies each row in your data table as unique – this can simply start with one and increase with increments of one with each row. In some cases, users choose to have the “date” column serve as the unique ID for their data. As long as you only have one data point per date, this works just fine.

The “date” column should store the date of this goal value in the following format: yyyy-mm-dd. If you are creating monthly goals, then each of your date values can be the first day of a month (e.g. 2012-01-01, 2012-02-01, etc.).

The “goal” column will store the actual value of your goal. You don’t need to assign a unit to this column as this can be handled in RJMetrics. Simply input a numerical value: e.g. 100.

Now your spreadsheet should look something like this:

Note that you can add more goal type columns for each metric you’d like to assess. For example, you can have another column for “number of orders”, “number of logins”, etc. We can then simply create individual metricss based on the same data file in RJMetrics to assess each goal.

Once you’re satisfied with your goals, save your spreadsheet as a “.csv” file.

Step 2 – Upload your goals

Now’s the time to upload your goals into RJMetrics with our file uploader. Simply follow the instructions to learn how to upload your data into RJMetrics.

Step 3 – Overlay goals vs. actuals

Once you have uploaded your goals spreadsheet, all that remains is to create a metric for the goal, create a chart and finally overlay the goals with your actual data.

To create a metric, you need to use your newly uploaded data table as source table. Then simply perform a “sum” on your “goal” column and trending over the “date” column.

Once the metric is built (e.g. “revenue goals”), we can now go onto any dashboard and create a goals chart or report. Simply select your newly created goals metric in step 1 of the chart wizard and complete the chart building process. Now you should have a goals versus time chart.

The final step will be to overlay your new goal chart with your actual data. This can be done by adding the two source charts (i.e. goal chart and actual data chart) in the composite chart builder and simply adding each chart as a series in the composite chart. Note that your source charts will need to have identical settings for step 2 of their chart settings for dates.

As each of your source charts will be assigned a letter in the composite chart builder, the formula for your new series will simply be that letter: i.e. [A] as the formula for a series, [B] as the formula for the other series.

Now, you have an RJMetrics chart that maps your actual performance against your goals. You can follow these steps to create one for each goal metric you’d like to trace and soon you’ll have a full dashboard that you can monitor as you meet your milestones!

If you need any help creating some of these reports or would like to perform even deeper analysis, simply contact us via “Support” -> “Contact Support” from your dashboard.