Strategy Map Balanced Scorecard Software - commonly asked questions:

Question Answer
We just wanted to use a KPI software system with a Dashboard. Why would we want to use your software? Strategic Planning is experiencing a maturing phase as managers cannot afford to restructure and burn employee time resources after simply using a "Start in the middle" KPI-Dashboard tool.

The primary planning end-result is the exposure of Employee Intangible Assett skills to Strategic Alignment scruitiny.
If you only have KPI->Dashboard you are only measuring the same things that were always done. Why? Because they have always been done and were never questioned.
As the momentum swings back to true strategic performance planning there is a new focus on 3rd Generation concepts which are designed to strengthen the Strategy Map and make the corporate Objectives understandable and defendable.

Managers no longer want to burn employee energy unless thay have got it totally correct and "nailed-up" from the top down.
We currently use Excel to do our Balanced Scorecard. Why would we want to use your software? It is great that you have a balanced scorecard however there are huge advantages in using concurrent multi-user software that is customized and automated for the purpose.

You may have to learn about the software however you can then apply yourself better to the Strategic Planning process without having to think about building and using Excel.
Plus you get specialized outputs at the press of a button.

Our software is the only mass-market fully-Harvard-compatible 3G SM/BSC software with the additional concepts: "Roll-your-own" Strategic Plan design and the Strategy Map "WYSIWYG" feedback loop.
How can you claim that your software is the most popular and widely used in the world. It is popular because of its attributes: New-technology, Fast, Light, Easy, Adaptable & Inexpensive.
It is widely used because many people use the free version for training and learning or simply because they need funding to purchase a license.

Software downloads have been running at well over 2000/month for more than 3 years.
Why is your software license so much cheaper than all other similar software. Our company overheads are low and the value of our currency is also reduced.
The software is all new and written in the new Microsoft Dot Net Software development technology using their new C-Sharp programming language.

We also use software tools from Component One which are more reliable, faster to write software with and produce a better result.
There is no reason why this kind of software should be expensive.
When we buy a Software license, how is it installed and maintained. We email you a license file which you save onto a hard drive or memory stick.
In the software you locate the license file either by browsing or letting the software search for the file.
Once it initially reads the file the software license is installed.

The software license validation and usage is honesty based and computers do not need to be on the internet.
After we buy a license, how do we setup our computers for concurrent multi-user operation. The software is supplied with a configuration data file called StrategyMapConfig.xml

When you are licensed this file can be edited so that the software can read from a remote shared folder or from an SQL server.
The License Tab screen fields allows you to change these settings.
The Vision Mission software module has several pages for other Strategic statements.
How would we use these?
There are six auxiliary pages that you can use for any purpose.
There are 11 statement rows on each page and each statement has room for 250 characters.
It is intended that each statement be reasonably brief and hence each has a place to link back to a more verbose document.

These pages are then a place for concise targeted statements as well as a directory back to more detailed information.
The Strategy Map Objectives and Perspectives each have Notes areas.
How would we use these?
The Third Generation Balanced Scorecard definition defines the need for Objective Descriptions and Destination Statements.
These are essential strategic components as it is important to say how every Objective statement is defined, so that the statement text can be brief.

In process orientated strategy maps, some of our customers use these descriptive fields for Cause and Effect.
The Balanced Scorecard software module has both Free-Text and List-Based Columns.
How do we know which ones to use?
Use the List Based column if the text is commonly re-used for another person or if you want to cross reference by it.
Use Free-Text for ordinary text or links to external documents or websites.

For example the Initiatives text is usually Free-Text because it is rarely shared by individuals, however the date would be List-Based so that you can cross-reference by it to see what is happening and when.
The Balanced Scorecard software module has additional user Defined columns.
When would we use these?
You can add additional columns to your design at any stage, some examples are:
In the Objectives grid it can be handy to know when a KPI is reviewed so you might add a column caled 'Review date' with contents such as 'January 2009'.
In the Initiatives grid you could add additional budgeting plus extra columns for the Account Cost Codes.