Heitor Gouvêa

Research About

Historical metrics vs Tracking metrics

Continuing the discussion on metrics, another point worth considering and categorizing is the distinction between historical metrics and tracking metrics. Making proper use of these metrics can be a differentiating factor. Let me explain:

  • Historical metrics: these serve to portray past events, illustrating through numbers what has already happened. They are useful for developing medium and long-term plans.

  • Tracking metrics: these objective is to provide real-time insights into ongoing events, allowing for the creation of short-term tactics.

To illustrate this, let’s use a basic and didactic example:

Imagine that we want to measure whether we were successful or not with a group of students enrolled in a 12-month course. A strong and straightforward indicator is the final ratio between the number of students who passed and the number of students who failed.

However, since the course lasts for 12 months, relying solely on this metric would be inadequate because we would only obtain the answer to our question too late. Consequently, we would not be able to take immediate action to improve the situation if it is not optimal. In other words, this metric is historical.

As for tracking metrics, we can consider the following:

  1. Bi-monthly assessments: These allow us to identify students with a low achievement rate. We can even conduct assessments based on subject categories, providing further details on the specific subjects in which students are struggling. This enables short-term changes, such as adjusting the teaching methodology, providing additional classes, or recommending supporting references to students.

  2. Monthly attendance rate: Students who attend classes infrequently are more likely to fail. By monitoring attendance, we can diagnose the issue, communicate with the student, understand the reasons behind their behavior, and make necessary adjustments.

What are your thoughts on this reflection? Does it make sense to you, and can it benefit your team?