Measurement definitions glossary

What are goals, objectives and KPIs?

Baseline metrics

Baselines are a number that you set by measuring before you begin work. They show the current state and allow you to compare to later. They show change over time. Baselines can be better measures of performance than benchmarks.


Benchmarks are industry averages. Benchmarking is comparing your performance against the benchmarks. There are many variables involved in setting benchmarks so they can often be unreliable.

A visual representation of the relationship between objectives and goals. With a large goal at the end of the process there are a number of smaller objectives to reach that goal.


A goal is the outcome your strategy is aiming to achieve. It describes the result of all of the activity that comes out of the strategy, planning and implementation.

Key Performance Indicator (KPI)

These are targets. They show an increase or substantial change over time. Reaching the KPI targets is evidence of success. Objectives and KPIs can be interchangeable.


Objectives are points or markers that must be reached on the path towards achieving a goal.