What is business performance management?

If you’re asking that question then this is the article for you.

As a business owner it isn’t just you against the ever changing and evolving business world.

Ideally you’ll have the right managers and team leaders running the departments within your business. These will be expertly filled with the most effective teams, made up of driven individuals.

That is ultimately what your business is when you break it down. Business performance management (BPM) is a way of you and your management team looking at how the teams and individuals within those teams are all working with you together to achieve one common goal.

Driving the business forwards to success.

Your managers will be assessing their teams and individuals within their teams to ensure that everyone is pulling in the same direction.

A deep dive into your business will most probably expose those individuals, teams or even processes which are not currently fit for purpose, thus restricting you from performing as well as you could.

By working closely with your HR department (or person) you’ll find that they are the key to helping you drive a consistent, transparent and fair approach to improving the culture of the business through high-quality, professional advice and guidance.

Let’s take a look at how you and your HR department can work together to create the ideal business performance plan for each aspect of your business:

Talent management

Firstly let’s talk about recruiting talent for your business. You will be tasking the HR department with searching for the right fit for your business.

Break down the requirements:

  • Skills
  • Knowledge
  • Experience
  • Past achievements
  • Personality traits

Don’t forget about cultural fit. Recruiting talent that will enhance your team dynamic and make it stronger is vitally important to future success.

Initial induction of new colleagues is key to giving them the best start in your organisation. It will also help to identify where their talents actually lay. Plus, how they will fit in within their new team.  A skills matrix is a great way of capturing the capabilities of each team member against the requirements of their job.

It is up to you and your HR department to make sure that no talent is wasted. Having talented key players within your business is a fundamental aspect of  improving business performance.

Retention of your employees is something we will cover in the next section. However, talent needs rewarding by recognition of their achievements

The balancing act is to recognise everyone for their efforts and reward them accordingly. All this while maintaining positivity and support throughout the teams. Singling out those performing well or even not so well can equally encourage a negative reaction. Talent management from HR is important to encourage, nurture and reward the talented key players and those with the potential to progress even further.

If someone is asked to communicate team developments, a new process or take a new starter under their wing this encourages a feeling of acknowledgement and responsibility. This engagement helps to embed and demonstrate the value of effective communication, and confirms  they have been heard and that their efforts have been recognised.

Click here to learn more about Talent Management

Rewards and benefits with business performance management

Retention is key.

By having attractive rewards and benefits for recognition of great work the word will get around.

Soon, will you be contacted by motivated individuals who want to work for you. You will also encourage the retention of talented employees too.

It is all about pulling in the same direction. So, positivity and creating a reward culture throughout the business can reap great rewards.

A little investment in reward schemes can go a long way.

Everyone could do with their money and time out of work going a little further. Discounts, rewards and something as simple as time off as a reward will create a working environment that encourages positivity.

It’s a simple analogy, but a happy employee is a productive one.

Click here for more info on Employee Rewards and Benefits

HR advice and guidance

Your HR department should be open and approachable. This is so that advice and guidance is taken proactively, rather than reactively, after something has already happened. They will have to be able to communicate equally between employees and management to assist the company as a whole.

By having the right HR team in place they will help to drive the business. Drive towards achieving goals and targets with detailed and high quality advice and guidance. Their advice should be focused on helping your staff deliver consistently great performance. The outcome of this will be that your high performing teams generate excellent outcomes for the business.  Creating and embedding a performance management culture is key to this.

Click here if you want some HR Advice and Guidance in your business

Your key HR players will act as an intermediary between you the business owner, the team managers and any guidance or standards authorities requiring adherence.

Employees they will be safe in the knowledge that they and their colleagues are treated equally, fairly and consistently.

With an open and transparent culture, the employees will have a safe and secure environment in which to ask any questions or raise any issues before actions are taken.

Utilising any feedback from advice given is also useful in helping to develop the relationship with everyone.

Of course, with advice and guidance should come strategy. HR strategy is the building blocks of a solid organisation where people are treated fairly and properly. Without this, you will come across many people problems.

We caught up with Matt Bullock, Director of People and Culture for Acorns Children’s Hospice to delve into Behavioural Principles and how these tie into HR Strategy. Watch now:

Policies and procedures

The HR policies within the business ensure that legal and professional boundaries are adhered to. The procedures in place guarantee that everyone is working together, knowing what is and is not expected of them.

Equally a framework will be established in case a situation arises. This could be for anyone crossing those boundaries is dealt with in an informed and swift manner.

Among others these policies and procedures will include, but are not limited to;

  • Employee contracts
  • Salary
  • Dress code
  • Code of conduct
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Bullying and harassment
  • Leave
  • Sickness
  • Maternity and paternity leave and other ‘family friendly’ policies

Policies can change and it is essential for HR to work with department heads in order to convey these changes to employees.

Your policies can contribute to the wider business performance. Equally they could put your business in danger if not correctly established and adhered to.

There will be HR policy and procedure documents which should be easily accessible for all.

For the employees there is clarity. A signposted understanding of what is expected from them for driving the business while staying within the professional and legal boundaries.

Click here to learn more about HR Policies and HR Procedures


There are distinct differences between managers and leaders.

A manager doesn’t necessarily lead their team. They manage the team and its activities, processes and outputs. In that we mean they give direction, have authority and react to situations.

A leader will be more motivational, creating a high performance culture where success is inevitable.  In doing this they will understand themselves and their leadership style and be able to build trust. They will inspire action in others, unleash innovation, educate, manage ambiguity and kill risk and also deliver with pace. 

Instead of having power a leader will create power, encouraging the team to grow, learn from development and each other. Alexander Den Heijer, a motivational speaker and author was once quoted as saying:

“When I talk to managers, I get the feeling they are important. When I talk to leaders, I get the feeling that I am important”.

Identifying leaders within teams and using their abilities of having followers is the perfect opportunity to drive your business. Why? They will inspire their colleagues to do the best that they can.

However, if you give a leader more responsibility are they at risk of becoming a manager who has subordinates instead of followers? A natural leader doesn’t operate on the basis of  power given to them, but instead inspires and acts with a welcoming air of authority.

Whether an individual is leading and motivating oneself or the people around them, a natural leader will soon find themselves becoming a driving force behind their team and ultimately the business.

Leaders, as might be expected, are the beating heart of any business.

Click here to learn more about Leadership, Development and Coaching

HR software

Finally, we will discuss HR software.

The efficiency of administrative processes and compliance of record keeping is another factor. This all drives the business to achieve its goals. Having the right HR software in place can save so much time. Time that is normally dedicated to admin, meaning more time spent on more productive aspects.

Click here for more info on HR Software

Time is a valuable commodity in any business. Any ways to save it here and there is so beneficial to the business.

A good example is an automated holiday booking request system. It is much less time consuming than having to provide a holiday form and everything that ensues once given.

A protected software is more efficient than the days of files and filing cabinets and it is more secure.

More and more businesses are attempting to go paperless. This is a great move for the environment and will have so many other benefits to the business;

  • Streamlining often time consuming tasks and processes
  • More secure
  • Being environmentally conscious will attract attention from the media, clients, potential applicants and your industry as a whole
  • Less space taken up with office furniture such as filing cabinets

The HR software encourages individuals to be more self sufficient. This is opposed to the ‘reliance culture’ we can sometimes adopt that ‘someone else will do it for us’.

With employees having access to their own records of achievements, booking time off or training completed in one place they can monitor themselves without having to contact their manager or HR.

Again, with less time taken on transactional admin tasks there is more time for individuals actually doing their job.

Watch our HR Talks… chat with Chris Allbones of drumBEAT Marketing here. As your business grows, it’s essential to keep up-to-date with all elements of HR. That’s why we spoke to Chris, who uses HR Software in his business. He also knows a thing or two about technology! So, we picked his brains on cloud computing in a business setting

Let’s wrap up business performance management

So there it is. There are so many elements that make up ways to achieve your targets, goals, growing the business and using your HR department to its fullest to do so.

Learn more about performance management through our other blogs on the topic:

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