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Modern CEO Dashboards & Leadership Reports – Examples And Templates

CEO dashboards by datapine

For any business to succeed in the digital age, it needs purpose, direction, and the resources to grow as well as adapt to the ever-changing landscape surrounding it. To achieve this, strong leadership is essential.

As a CEO, you’re responsible for overseeing every aspect of your business, from the people and the internal culture all the way through to key sales, marketing, and financial strategies. While your organization is no doubt brimming with the kind of talent that can drive every aspect of your organization forward, ultimately, the success of the company rests on your shoulders.

Compassion and people skills aside, every strong leader needs the vision to be the best they can be. And to gain a greater vision, you need to embrace the power of digital data, using professional CEO dashboards and reports as your informational vessel.

By leveraging smart online data analysis in the right way, you will gain access to insights that will help you develop strategies that foster growth and innovation while keeping your staff motivated, engaged, and happy. In this age, making rough estimates or shooting in the dark will only get you so far. For this reason, gaining access to the perfect mix of tangible insights is vital.

‘But how do I improve my leadership strategy across the board?’ – you might ask. CEO reporting is the answer.

As mentioned, CEO dashboards will give you access to quality insights, giving you more confidence in the process. 

By leveraging the power of an online dashboard, you can create a powerful executive-level narrative with your data in minutes. Here, we’ll consider what a leadership dashboard is, and what it does, explore a selection of real-world CEO dashboard examples to demonstrate the power of this valuable leadership tool, followed by top tips to create CEO reports. We will focus on the key aspects of various departments that will benefit from dynamic CEO-level data, empowering chief executive officers to make informed real-time decisions as well as innovative leadership strategies.

Let’s dive in.

What Is A CEO Dashboard?

A CEO dashboard example showing the revenue and customer overview on a quarterly basis

A CEO dashboard is a management reporting tool used to track, analyze, and visualize data. It empowers CEOs and other c-level executives to make data-driven decisions with the help of interactive, high-level metrics from sales, marketing, finance, and other areas.

CEOs need a birds-eye overview of the most prominent metrics that will help them make the best possible decision in order to improve outcomes and a comprehensive leadership dashboard is one of the solutions that can certainly help.

Data-driven dashboards offer business leaders a level of insight that maximizes the value of the top-level data available at their fingertips, enhancing strategic decision-making and mentorship across the board.

Additionally, dashboards can serve as CEO reports and now we will explain how.

What Is A CEO Report?

A CEO report is a critical analytical tool that serves up historical trends, and real-time insights in a way that’s visual, digestible, and easy to navigate. These reports can be delivered in the form of an interactive dashboard or .pdf file, for example.

It’s possible to tailor CEO dashboards to your specific needs, goals, and requirements, working with CEO KPIs that will help you uncover priceless trends and insights with ease. To do so, CEO dashboard software will prove to be a critical leadership tool for the digital age but we will go into details later. In essence, it offers the following benefits:

  • Improved decision-making.
  • Wider accessibility to important data.
  • Mobility through 24/7 mobile dashboard access.
  • Improved internal communication that will make the organization stronger.

The Key Benefits Of CEO Reporting & Dashboards

Top tips to create effective CEO reports: 1. Concentrate on the big picture, 2. Take appropriate time intervals, 3. Don’t concentrate only on past performance, 4. Integrate all core areas of your business, 5. Enable data-driven decisions, 6. Explore storytelling potential, 7. Prioritize form & function, 8. Keep on evolving

Now that you’re up to speed with the concept of a leadership dashboard and its functions on a c-level, we’re going to explore the key benefits of using CEO dashboard metrics to your advantage.

1. Confidence, validation & trust

As a leader, everyone in the organization will naturally look to you for guidance and answers to a wealth of very specific questions about the business. To stay composed and remain a positive authoritative influence, working with robust, reliable, and digestible data is essential. By serving up accurate data in an accessible visual format, a modern CEO BI dashboard will give you the confidence to take charge of every core aspect of the business while validating your choices with actionable insights. In turn, this will build greater trust and transparency, boosting engagement and productivity in the process.

2. Decision-making 

Expanding on our last point, the accessible visual nature of CEO dashboards will help you make informed, accurate, and progressive decisions under pressure. By interacting with a wealth of real-time data-driven insights or empowering your senior staff with the tools to create insightful narratives with dynamic CEO reports, you will make consistently powerful decisions that will ultimately accelerate the growth of your organization.

3. Extensive data access

By investing in innovative business intelligence dashboard software, you will create a data-powered culture throughout the organization. With a modern CEO board report, you no longer have to be a developer or tech wizard to transform insight into action. Any modern CEO dashboard worth its salt is customizable, allowing you to work with the key performance indicators that align with your specific goals and objectives while giving everyone the tools to perform to their best abilities. CEO dashboard software equals extensive data access, placing accessible insights in your hands as well as the hands of your organization’s brightest talent. And when you do that, your business will thrive.

4. Flexibility & adaptability

CEO dashboard reporting software not only allows you to curate, analyze, and access a raft of invaluable data from one central location - as any solid modern CEO report generator is optimized for a range of devices, including mobile and desktop, you can connect with business-boosting insights and make razor-sharp decisions 24/7 wherever you are in the world.

5. Panoramic vision & BI

By working with the perfect storm of historical, predictive, and real-time analytics, you can leverage strengths, identify weaknesses, spot emerging trends, and uncover insights you never thought possible. This level of BI reporting will filter down throughout the entire organization, making it efficient, effective, and industry-leading across departments.

6. Performance review

Regardless of your niche or industry, the most effective way to achieve or even exceed your business’s goals is by setting clear-cut targets and benchmarks. Whether you’re talking about a CEO weekly report template or a CEO quarterly report template, by interacting with highly visual and insightful top-level KPIs, you can monitor performance across departments with pinpoint accuracy, offering the right level of support and strategic tweaks where required.

7. Communication & innovation

All of these business-boosting benefits combined serve to break down silos within the business and create a culture of innovation. And by being able to make quicker, more valuable decisions while saving time on sifting through a static report or large lists of figures, you can focus on offering additional support, mentorship, and developing innovative strategies that will push you ahead of your competitors, one powerful leadership activity at a time.

Your Chance: Want to impress your CEO with professional dashboards?
Try our modern dashboard software for 14 days, completely free!

Essential CEO Dashboard Examples & Templates

Now that we’ve considered the benefits of working with a modern dashboard for CEOs, it’s time to explore some real-life CEO dashboard templates. These 4 very different but equally powerful examples are interactive, and visual, and provide a level of insight that fosters enhanced leadership in a number of areas.

Let’s start with our CEO KPI dashboard focused on finances and satisfaction levels.

1. CEO Dashboard For Financial Health & Team's Success

CEOs need to track the financial performance of a company, but also focus on the team and customers to generate the best possible insights and move the business forward. In our first CEO corporate dashboard, we focus on exactly that.

CEO dashboard showing high-level metrics focused on financial performance. In this picture, we can see the revenue, gross profit, EBIT, operating expenses, etc

**click to enlarge**

By monitoring financial health with the help of high-level financial KPIs such as revenue, EBIT, net income, and cost breakdown, each executive has immense data to monitor and optimize the financial performance of a company. Additionally, modern CEOs need to stay connected to the team and customers to know their satisfaction levels. This is important in our digital age as employees will switch companies if they're not satisfied. The same you can assume for customers.

CEO metrics explained:

  • Gross profit margin: 

This financial chart expounds on the total sales revenue you keep after accounting for all costs related to your product or service. It's an important metric to track since you can evaluate how efficient your operational processes are.

CEO graph example for gross profit margin showing 42%

For example, you need to include in your calculation all prices of materials and labor of your production facility but exclude expenses such as rent. The higher the margin, the more income you retain from your sales dollars.

  • Operating expense ratio:

The operating expense ratio needs to be included in every CEO report template you will create from the financial perspective as it will show you how well you manage your operating expenses in comparison to the total revenue.

Operating expenses ratio showing the value of 40%

This metric is particularly interesting for investors since they usually want to know how high are your operating costs in connection to the generated revenue, as mentioned. It's important to include this metric in your financial reports since c-level executives need to obtain a clear-cut overview of whether the company is scalable. If you can keep operating expenses at a lower level, the company will realize more profits.

  • Cash conversion cycle:

Converting resources into cash is the focus of the cash conversion cycle (CCC). A CEO report to the board of directors will usually depict the CCC in order to show how much time the company needs to convert its inventory investments (and other resources) into cash flows from sales.

A CEO report template depicting the cash conversion cycle in a specific time frame

This strategic visual tracks the performance over the course of the past 3 years automatically. It's created with a professional CEO dashboard generator that enables you to save time and resources from manual calculations and immediately spot that the illustrated cycle is becoming healthier with each year.

2. SaaS Management Dashboard For Sustainable Growth

As digital technology evolves, the SaaS sector continues to evolve. If you're the head of a budding software-of-a-service company, this CEO dashboard template will help you meet or even exceed your goals consistently.

An executive dashboard example visualizing the number of paying customers, ARPU, CAC, CLTV, and MRR over the course of a month.

**click to enlarge**

With 4 areas designed to track and measure customer churn, acquisition costs, recurring monthly revenue, and average revenue per unit (among other key insights), this dynamic SaaS CEO dashboard sample offers all the key ingredients for growth, efficiency, fluidity, and strategic planning.

Whether your SaaS venture is brand new or you’ve been around for some time and are looking to expand your audience, this management dashboard will help you achieve and even surpass your goals on a regular basis.

CEO KPIs explained:

  • Customer acquisition costs:

The customer acquisition cost is a KPI critical for any serious SaaS business that needs to know how much costs are incurred before convincing a prospect to buy the product or service. A chief executive officer report focused on the SaaS area needs to monitor this metric regularly in order to generate invaluable insights.

  • MRR:

Leaders in a SaaS company usually keep a close eye on the MRR since it gives a good indication if a business is developing in a healthy way, especially since it will enable you to make accurate financial forecasts based on users' subscriptions.

A CEO report for tracking all element of monthly recurring revenue

**click to enlarge**

A comprehensive SaaS dashboard will include the MRR as one of the most important indicators in SaaS management, especially on a C-suite level where the monthly recurring revenue plays a pivotal role in successful business development.

  • ARPU:

The average revenue per unit (user or account) is a CEO metric critical for indicating the customer's revenue from all your sales. The point is to keep the acquisition costs lower than your ARPU in order to make stable profits.

3. Investor Relations Dashboard For Powerful Presentations

Our second CEO dashboard sample focuses on one of the most critical components of any thriving enterprise – investor relations.

Management report for investors focusing on investor-oriented KPIs: Return on Asset, Return on Equity, Debt-Equity ratio, Share Price, P/E ratio, and Working-Capital ratio

**click to enlarge**

The investor relations CEO dashboard template serves up a priceless mix of high-level metrics that will help you keep your professional relationships healthy while ensuring your asset-driven financial affairs are fluent and protected at all times.

By drilling down into your existing assets, your return on assets and equity, and your price-earnings ratio, this powerful executive-level CEO dashboard example will help both you and your shareholders thrive indefinitely.

CEO metrics used:

  • Return on assets
  • Return on equity
  • P/E ratio
  • Debt-equity ratio
  • Share price
  • Working capital ratio

4. CMO Dashboard For Top Marketing Performance

Without a doubt, in our cutthroat digital age, investing ample time and funds in your business's various marketing strategies is essential.

Our next template focuses on a marketing dashboard, a CMO-centric tool that will help you consolidate, organize, and analyze colossal datasets in one intuitive central location. This is actually a report to CEO example that is a good blueprint to present the marketing performance to the chief executive officer in a more detailed way if there are specific marketing-related questions.

A CEO dashboard example showcasing high-level marketing KPIs such as cost per lead, MQL, SQL, and cost per customer

**click to enlarge**

Boasting the perfect mix of top-level insights, this comprehensive CEO dashboard example will help you optimize your marketing performance, which will help you significantly boost your brand awareness and bottom line. An essential dashboard tool for any leader's digital toolkit. 

CEO KPIs explained:

  • Customer lifetime value:

Another critical metric within the marketing C-level suite, the lifetime value of a customer needs to be included in a CEO corporate dashboard since it's a precious indicator of achieving success in business. The longer you can keep a customer, the more revenue you will generate.

The Customer Lifetime Value is a KPI that represents the amount of money you would like/forecast to make on the period of time that your relationship lasts with that customer

CEOs need to grasp marketing and closely monitor the customer lifetime value as it will help you to identify the most profitable marketing channel which you can additionally examine on an operational level. Additionally, it will help you determine where to allocate the budget and how.

Additional measurements in our example:

  • Sales target & growth
  • Website-traffic-to-lead ratio
  • Cost per lead
  • Lead-to-MQL ratio
  • MQL-to-SQL ratio

To learn more details about additional metrics, you can check out our rundown of the most important marketing KPIs.

5. Sales KPI Dashboard For Increasing Revenue & Profits

As you’ll no doubt know as a chief executive, sales are integral to the existence of your organization.

Our sales dashboard hones in on every vital top-level area of this department providing insights that will help you reduce customer churn, improve economic efficiency, optimize your campaigns, and capitalize on revenue-boosting activities such as upselling and cross-selling. This dashboard will enable you to create sales reports that are easy to digest and enhance your decision-making processes.

A monthly CEO report template focused on high-level sales metrics such as revenue, profits, costs, incremental sales, accumulated revenue, up/cross-sell rates, etc.

**click to enlarge**

As a business leader, keeping a keen eye on your organization’s sales activities is crucial. This CEO report example will ensure that you not only measure these sales KPIs with ease but also uncover fresh insights that will help to increase your bottom line.

KPIs used:

  • Sales target:

As selling is a critical part of every strategy, CEOs need to take into account also if their team has reached planned goals. To make matters more simple, a visual CEO report example such as the one below should be high on the strategic sales performance tracking list.

Sales target: a CEO KPI in which setting goals in advance and implementing a strategy to reach and exceed them is of utmost importance

This metric will help you determine if your sales processes are on the right track or need more adjustments. The goal is, of course, to outperform your forecasted amount.

  • Customer churn rate:

Losing customers is never easy but it's important to track this metric in order to evaluate the trends within your business and upscale your retention strategies.

Customer churn rate is one of sales graphs focused on the number of customers that stopped using a specific service or product, expressed over a set period, and with the amount of lost revenue

By automating these calculations with the help of modern KPI dashboard software, the churn rate will be immediately shown with up-to-date information, without the need for tedious manual work. In our template above, we can see that the churn rate is 2%, but it will depend on your business area and industry.

Additional metrics in our example:

  • Upsell & cross-sell rates
  • Profit margin per rep
  • Incremental sales by campaign

6. Talent Dashboard To Track Employee Engagement 

Among the many critical tasks and areas that chief executive officers need to monitor, HR is at the top of the list. CEOs need to ensure that the company is hiring the best talent out there as well as keeping them satisfied and productive. For that purpose, this HR dashboard is a great tool to help leaders oversee the status of the different talent indicators. 

CEO dashboard tracking relevant talent management metrics such as employee satisfaction, turnover rates, hiring stats, etc.

**click to enlarge**

Having a dashboard like the one above is especially useful in today’s context. The CEO annual report 2022 by Deloitte shows that the unstable political, social, and economic conditions across the globe have significantly disrupted the business world, with a wave of resignations collectively known as the “great resignation”. In this sense, 62% of respondents said that training leaders on how to employ and engage employees are one of the top actions they are taking to avoid being affected by this growing issue. Taking all that into account, having an analytical tool to track everything related to talent management is an invaluable asset. Let’s look at some CEO KPI examples for HR. 

  • Talent Satisfaction 
Talent Satisfaction (NPS) as a CEO report metric example for employee management

As its name suggests, the talent satisfaction metric tracks the level of content and engagement of employees towards your business. There are many factors that can affect the way an employee feels towards the workplace, some of them include salary, office environment, and flexible working hours, just to name a few. To measure this indicator it is necessary to conduct satisfaction surveys and pinpoint specific areas of improvement. In this case, the KPI is tracked against a target and it divides employees by employment period, which is another important factor to consider. 

  • Talent Turnover Rate 
Talent turnover rate as a CEO report metric example for employee management

The talent turnover rate is another relevant indicator for efficient HR analytics. It tracks the number of employees who left a company in a given period. In the image above, the turnover rate is tracked by involuntary and voluntary leaves, as well as the department. This is an important metric for c-level executives given that hiring new employees costs a lot of time and money. Not to mention it can harm general organizational strategies due to the fact that some positions need to be filled for various years to make the investment worth it. 

7. Procurement KPI Dashboard For A Complete Picture Of The Purchasing Process

Paired to HR, marketing, and finances, another relevant area that CEOs need to monitor is procurement. Hand in hand with the CPO, a chief operating officer needs to ensure that the organization's purchasing processes are efficient and convenient. That said, the template below is the perfect tool to do this as it contains a mix of critical procurement metrics.

This procurement CEO report example provides an overview of the most essential metrics of the procurement department

**click to enlarge**

With the level of insights provided by the example above, chief executives can assess compliance, supplier quality, the performance of supply chain strategies, and of the procurement team in making the best deals for the company. Additionally, the level of interactivity of this dashboard allows management to drill down into the data and extract deeper conclusions to improve. Let's look at two key metrics from this dashboard below.

  • Compliance Rate
Compliance rate is one of our CEO dashboard metrics examples focused on the procurement industry, and broken down per type of suppliers.

The compliance rate is a procurement KPI that provides insights into the company-supplier relationship and ensures that all the contracted agreements are being met. It includes various factors such as the maximum reaction time in case of any issue, the delivery time, special discount offers, etc. It helps the procurement team to negotiate better prices and discounts with suppliers.

  • Purchase Order Cycle Time
The purchase order cycle time is a CEO dashboard metric example from procurement

As its name suggests, the purchase order cycle time tracks the end-to-end ordering process from the moment a PO is created to its approval, receipt, invoice and finally payment. Each supplier is divided into a short, medium, and long section based on their purchase order cycle time. This is valuable information as it tells you who to contact when you need a service with urgency.

To dig deeper into the CEO dashboards solutions that the examples above were created with, we will take a look at the main features a CEO dashboard software should include in order to generate value for companies of all sizes and industries.

Your Chance: Want to impress your CEO with professional dashboards?
Try our modern dashboard software for 14 days, completely free!

What To Look For In A CEO Dashboard Software?

CEO dashboard software example showing the management overview for the reporting period during this year

As mentioned earlier, every CEO needs a birds-eye overview of the complete business, and modern software and tools help him/her to save time, consolidate multiple touchpoints, and generate actionable insights within minutes. To create the examples we discussed above, a professional CEO dashboard software should have these components and/or elements:

1. Professional data connectors  

As you saw in our list of examples covering marketing, HR, finance, and sales, CEOs need to get a centralized view of all departments to ensure the organization is running smoothly. To do so, they need to trust in solutions that will offer them an easy and efficient way of monitoring all important areas in one place without having to do any tedious manual work. That said, dashboard software should provide professional data connectors. This technology allows users to connect multiple data sources to one location with just a few clicks. This way, executives can get a centralized view of all relevant metrics without the need to jump from one report to another or manually update the data on them.  

2. Advanced interactivity levels

The best dashboard software for CEOs needs to have advanced interactivity features such as drill-downs, time interval widgets, chart zoom, etc. These features are the very essence of viewing data from different angles while interacting with the screen as different questions arise, whether at a meeting or during the analysis process.

3. Cross-device accessibility

Chief executive officers need to have access to information from anywhere, and anytime. Professional software ensures that data is available from multiple devices, whether mobile, desktop, or tablet. That way, C-suite has immediate access to information and doesn't have to "shoot in the dark." Thanks to modern cloud solutions, and a simple Internet connection, CEOs have their data available - immediately.

4. White labeling 

The possibility to give a professional look to your dashboards through customization is another fundamental feature you should look for when investing in this kind of software. A white label CEO dashboard gives you the possibility to change the layout to the colors, logo, and font of your business. This is especially useful when it comes to meetings with investors, clients, or any other external stakeholder as it gives your organization a professional look. 

5. Multiple visualization options 

Another important feature to consider is having multiple data visualization options. Being able to tell a story with your data is one of the most important aspects of a successful dashboarding process and data visualizations such as various types of graphs and charts are key to telling a coherent story. This is due to the fact that the human brain processes images much faster than numbers, therefore, having software that gives you the freedom to tell your stories through a wide range of visuals is a must. Added to this, visuals also make the data more accessible and easy to understand which can prove useful when CEOs are trying to explain to employees how they should improve and what strategies will be implemented. 

6. Predictive analytics and forecasting

Chief executives need to predict future scenarios in order to avoid potential bottlenecks and create a sustainable business environment. Technologies that have emerged in recent years offer forecasting features that can ease a CEO's life and provide an additional perspective for future development. Based on past data points, the software automatically calculates predictions and presents data visually, therefore, you can immediately spot what will happen with your data from sales, marketing, finances, procurement, or any other industry that modern CEOs need to lead and upscale.

7. Multiple sharing options

When you create a certain CEO report to board template, you want the possibility to quickly and efficiently share. Customizing reports, recipients, and the information you want to share ensures complete control over the data you want to present as well as the level of access to the specified recipients. In practice, that means that you can share the complete chief executive officer dashboard through a public URL, enable specific rights within the viewer area, and, finally, embed the dashboard within another application, intranet, or website.

The listed features are some of the most prominent ones you should look for if you need to present your data to the CEO or if you're a CEO that needs to share insights with the executive board. Now we will focus on what information to include in such dashboards and finish with tips to make your executive efforts more valuable, and more effective.

What Info Does CEO Need In A Dashboard?

It’s clear that CEO dashboard software offers a variety of business-boosting benefits for those in a leadership role. However, to enjoy optimum success, it's vital to understand what you should include in your management reports. So, what info does a CEO need in a dashboard?

Let’s explore by looking at the core information you should include in your CEO dashboard reports:

1. The right KPIs & metrics

To ensure that your dashboard delivers the right insights for your individual goals, working with the right indicators is an absolute must. If your dashboard includes KPIs that are irrelevant to the insights you're looking to gain, it will be essentially useless.

Sit down with your senior team in a collaborative environment and examine your current processes as well as your proposed goals. Once you've established your aims and gained a greater understanding of your processes across the board, you'll be able to select the measurements that will best suit your needs and help you drive the business forward, and create a powerful CEO monthly report template.

You can also check our rich library of various KPI examples based on different departments, sectors, and functions for your consideration.

2. The right design & visualizations

Once you've selected the right KPIs, you'll need to set up your dashboard and customize it to your preferences. Different KPIs will offer different visualizations, depending on their nature or function.

To ensure quick and effective access to your most valuable data, designing your CEO dashboard metrics and template - correctly - is essential. By following the most prominent dashboard design principles, you will stand a greater chance to get a clearer picture of your company's processes, inside-out.

3. Management, marketing, finance & sales in one

As a CEO, you’ll need access to a wide range of data, spanning departments. In doing so, you’ll get a well-rounded, panoramic view of the organization’s progress while gaining the ability to formulate key strategies in a number of critical areas.

To thrive as a data-driven business leader, you will need to include KPIs and information balanced across management, marketing, sales, and finance – make sure you cover all bases.

Naturally, the specific analytical reports and data included in your dashboards will be tailored to your aims as a CEO. However, the takeaway here is that you must make sure that your CEO software serves up the perfect mix of insights, rather than leaning towards one particular area to avoid stunting your professional vision.

4. Performance data

Naturally, a CEO dashboard KPI will give you a clear-cut visual representation of your performance in specific areas in comparison to previous weeks, months, or years. But if you want to squeeze maximum value from your KPIs and visualizations as a CEO, working with insights that shed light on departmental as well as individual output and efficiency will give you the tools you need to provide training and support in the right areas.

As a business leader, you are a mentor. If you know exactly where to offer support, consultancy, and guidance, you will steer your organization to success. Including performance-based KPIs, including customer support or sales rep success rates and productivity benchmarks, will help you do just that. 

5. Growth insights

As a business leader, you will work with a variety of CEO dashboard examples. But to ensure you’re able to keep a firm grasp on your company’s fiscal health and success, working with templates, charts, and metrics that offer at-a-glance access to growth-based information such as sales figures, expenditure, profit ratios, partnership data, and fulfillment information will empower you to monitor your company’s growth while making swift strategic tweaks if any issues or discrepancies emerge.

6. Human resources (HR) information

In addition to analyzing top-level analytics related to sales, marketing, and finance, as a leader creating (and maintaining) a culture of trust, transparency, and community, you will dictate the ongoing growth of your business.

To keep everyone in the organization engaged while ensuring consistent organizational growth, working with HR metrics including talent acquisition KPIs, staff productivity rates, and talent-centric data will give you the level of vision needed to retain your staff while fostering collaboration, communication, and innovation across the board.

Top 11 Tips To Create Effective CEO Reports

Top 11 tips to create effective CEO reports

We have expounded on the various CEO reports examples and templates, but to fully leverage the power of creating such reporting tools, you should keep in mind these tips:

1. Concentrate on the big picture

CEOs aren't interested in vanity metrics or low-level ones. They need to ensure the company's strategy is on track, but the details and operational activities are kept under control by managers and staff members. By utilizing high-level KPIs, each CEO can paint a full picture based on where the business is going and what needs to adjust. That being said, don't present the bounce rate data from your website or inform him/her that a specific product is out of stock, but focus on strategic insights that need to be monitored by a chief executive such as customer costs or values.

2. Define performance targets 

Given that chief executive officers need to ensure efficiency and growth across the entire organization it is a great practice to set performance targets. This is useful not only to assess the success of the different activities and strategies but also to measure the performance of employees and departments. By setting attainable and realistic targets, leaders can also spot improvement opportunities to ensure efficiency and success. If you want to dig deeper into the topic of KPI targets and goals then take a look at our complete guide on the topic! 

3. Consider your audience 

Depending on the context, CEOs might need to present reports to diverse audiences. Of course, each of them needs to have different information and formats to serve the purpose. For instance, c-level executives such as CMOs, CTOs, or COOs, might need more detailed information regarding strategies and performance than investors who might just need to see some financial indicators. The important thing is to be aware of the purpose each of them has and build the report based on each audience's needs. This way, the reporting process will be more engaging and efficient. 

4. Take appropriate time intervals

As we saw in our CEO report examples above, none of them are based on a daily level. Chief executives don't need to be alarmed by each daily report that departments need to follow in order to properly manage their part of the business. Usually, it is wise to use weekly, monthly, or quarterly intervals, depending on the level of responsibility the CEO delegates. It can also differ from business to business, so it might make sense to communicate and adjust accordingly.

5. Don't concentrate only on past performance

CEO reports should also take a look into the future and indicate predictions. When creating your reports with a dashboard builder, make sure you are setting realistic goals, and that you also have the resources which are needed to achieve those goals, the report can provide a clear business picture and a roadmap for the next level of development.

6. Integrate all core areas of your business

Each business needs several core areas to function properly and generate growth. A SaaS corporation will have different core areas than retail, but as we already mentioned in the article, sales and marketing are usually always important. Other relevant metrics you might need to cover are customer support, HR, IT KPIs, procurement, etc.

Having a clear structure in these areas is of utmost importance. By using various dashboard tabs and internal widget linking, your business story can be presented much easier, accompanied by effective visuals that ensure efficient dashboard and data storytelling.

7. Enable data-driven decisions

CEOs must be given everything they need, and concisely. But more importantly, giving them the possibility to drill down into central KPIs on their own or during a business meeting with other C-level executives by taking advantage of modern, interactive dashboards, and by avoiding static reports, insights and possibilities are endless.

8. Explore story-telling potential

Humans respond best to compelling plots and narratives - CEO data analytics is no exception. When developing a CEO report and selecting your KPIs, you should consider how each metric will work together to tell a story based on a specific department, function, or outcome.

Taking a storytelling approach to your CEO and leadership dashboards will make your insights more accessible, more inspiring, and, as a result, more powerful. Read our guide to inspirational data storytelling examples to find out how you can use this effective technique to your advantage.

9. Prioritize form & function over aesthetics

When you’re creating customized reports as a CEO, it’s important to get your design efforts right. To ensure that your dashboard content (the reports) is easy to understand and straightforward to interact with, you must make sure that your designs are consistent in form and color, presented in a logical format, and provide yourself as well as other users in the business with features or functionality that help them drill down into important pockets of information with ease. Another plus-point for valuing function over aesthetics is that your information will appear more consistent, professional, and presentable when meeting with external stakeholders—further propelling your brand reputation and business growth.

10. Learn from the bad and the good results 

As the head of an organization, you are responsible for making important decisions that will drive the success of the organization. To make the most out of the process it is an important best practice to not only focus on good results. There is a wide range of insights hiding behind bad results, and a successful CEO must be able to dig deeper into them and find improvement opportunities. After all, having a complete picture of the good and the bad, allows leaders to know the business in its entirety, which is a key requirement for successful management. This is especially true when it comes to big corporations, where the chief executive officer needs to answer to a board of directors. Showing the board that there are areas to improve and there's work being done to improve them is a great way to approach leadership. 

11. Keep on evolving

This may sound obvious, but you would be amazed at just how many CEOs overlook this essential point: once you’ve created your CEO report template, you should periodically update it to ensure it offers maximum value.

In our fast-paced and incredibly cutthroat digital age, the landscape is always shifting. It doesn’t matter what niche or industry you operate in, taking the time to tweak and evolve your CEO-style reports frequently will ensure the best possible return on investment (ROI) for your reporting efforts while keeping you ahead of the curve.

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Final Thoughts On CEO Dashboards & Reports

We’ve asked the question ‘what info does a CEO need in a dashboard,’ looked at a mix of business-boosting leadership benefits, and explored a mix of real-world executive dashboard examples. And one thing is clear: if you’re a business leader looking to push your business to the next level, data is indeed your friend.

Dashboards for CEOs will help you manage the endless amount of data available at your fingertips, empowering you to extract actionable insights that will make your business decisions all the more valuable while improving trust, transparency, and communication throughout the organization.

Doing so will improve interdepartmental collaboration, boost the efficiency of your processes, propel your commercial reach, boost your bottom line, and guide your organization into a bright and prosperous future.

Data is the new oil, and a leadership dashboard is the vehicle that drives it – don’t miss out.

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