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10 features you should check before buying an OKR tool

Looking forward to investing in best OKR software. In this blog we have listed top 10 features you must look for in OKR software before finalizing one.
Sagrika Mehta

Sagrika Mehta

Best OKR software

Rolling out OKRs at your organization or planning to scale up your OKR game. Investing in the best OKR software is the next big step to achieve OKR success.

Why you need a OKR software?

OKRs methodology, made famous by Google, has been proved to bring meteoric success to many famous organizations including Intel, Netflix, and Spotify.

“A successful system needs only to answer two questions: Where do I want to go? How will I pace myself to see if I’m getting there? Objectives and Key Results answer these questions.”Andy Grove, Intel CEO

Although most organizations start implementing OKRs using spreadsheets. As your organization scales up, managing OKRs and keeping track manually becomes impossible. Read our blog on why you need OKR software instead of spreadsheets to understand the hiccups you will face if you use spreadsheets.

OKR software provides you a central location for documenting your OKRs and helping you-

  • To get clarity and find the right direction while setting OKRs.
  • To connect OKRs at each level of the organization and align your priorities.
  • To get better support in performance management.
  • To make tracking progress more effective, easy, and error-free.
  • To measure OKR performance across all organizational levels.
  • To increase transparency and communication on all OKR matters.
  • To foster a greater sense of accountability.
  • To make your OKR framework more agile. 

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What features the best OKR software must have?

What features the best OKR software must have?

But, with so many options available in the market, choosing the right OKR software might seem like a Herculean task.

We are here to help you. Below are the top 10 features which the best OKR software should have.

1Simple Interface

Your OKR software should be easy to use. It should have a simple, clean, and clutter-free yet attractive user interface. Best OKR tools come with ease of use. It should allow your employees to use the OKR tool with minimum guidance. 

“A user interface is well-designed when the program behaves exactly how the user thought it would.”— Joel Spolsky

The interface must be designed in a way that employees can edit, and update their objectives and key results without any trouble. Even when they are introduced to the OKR tool for the first time.

An added bonus can be providing technical and user support; training and tutorials to guide the users. It will enhance the usability rank of the software.

2Allow review and feedback

You often have your teams working on different objectives and key results. Keeping track of the progress of each one of them can be difficult. OKR software should solve this problem with the Review and feedback feature.

Best OKR tools are designed to encourage leaders and executives to communicate and evaluate their teams’ performance. 

“We all need people who will give us feedback. That’s how we improve.” Bill Gates

The best OKR software allows peer review and fosters a culture of feedback. Where teams can collaborate, provide or receive reviews and feedback on each other’s work. And move together towards achieving their objective.

3Align and cascade OKR

One features every best OKR software must-have is the option to Align and Cascade OKRs.

Teams often work with shared OKRs to reach the larger company-level OKRs. Best OKR tools allow you to cascade OKRs by sharing them from one level to another. For example-Your management team key results and be cascaded into individual OKRs of a team member.

Imagine if your executive team is aiming to achieve goal ‘A’ by the end of the quarter. While your teams are working on goals ‘B’, ‘C’, or ‘D’.  It will only cost you time, money, and effort.

Aligning features on the other hand helps you make sure that everyone in the organization is rowing in the same direction. And working on the things most important.

4Reports and analytics

The best OKR tools have a robust reporting system to help you keep track of the progress of your teams at every point. 

You need analytics to evaluate and answer questions like- whether your teams are lagging in their OKRs, Whether your OKRs are aligned at every level of the organization, whether your teams are working on the top priorities, whether the performance of your teams has improved over the quarter, etc.

The best OKR software reflects bottlenecks before they can impede your business growth.  The right analytics can further help you to make data-driven decisions.

Click here to read about the success story of LinkedIn with help of OKRs

5Follow-up and check-ins

Best OKR software check-in feature

With the follow-up and Check-ins feature the best OKR software help you reflect on the progress of your teams. 

These check-ins are not just important to help your teams perform their best and deal with any obstruction that hinders their OKR success. But is also important to help your teams cultivate the right mindset to realize their OKRs.

It offers reminders and questions for timely OKR check-ins, OKR review meetings, and One on ones to discuss OKRs. It thus facilitates OKR progress. It encourages meaningful conversations around the accomplished plans and  Key Results.

6Allow transparency

A survey with 40,000 respondents shows transparency as a major factor contributing to overall employee happiness.

Transparency allows mapping people and helps everyone understand who is working on what. It helps teams work in tandem and ensures alignment.

“A lack of transparency results in distrust and a deep sense of insecurity.”- Dalai Lama

With the clarity of how individuals are contributing to the larger organizational goals comes a sense of accountability towards achieving their targets.

7Goal mapping

Goal Mapping makes OKRs at every level of the organization more visible to everyone. And provides teams insights into how their OKRs are tied to that of other teams. 

The goal mapping feature of OKR software helps you make sure that individual goals are aligned to overall organizational goals.

The best OKR software helps everyone understand how their individual OKRs are linked to the organizational goals. In addition, it helps teams stay in sync while working on their OKRs. 

8Customizable

Your OKR software should also be easily customizable as per your organizational needs. For example how you would like to place your check-ins- in the form of a percentage, or milestone. 

OKRs are not permanent and rigid. For hypergrowth, you need to make your OKR framework flexible. The best OKR software therefore should allow this flexibility to change goals with the customization feature.

9Option to comment

As mentioned above, OKRs can be changing as per the organizational and market needs. Your OKR software should allow you to comment on your teams’ OKRs and have direct discussions on a regular basis.

Comment option in your OKR software will further encourage two-way communication. Where your employees can freely talk about their opinions and offer you feedback. 

Every best OKR software should have the comment feature to foster a healthy work culture of critical feedback.

10OKR dashboard

OKR dashboard presents everything in one place for you. It provides real-time insights into the team and individual performances. 

Best OKR software offers easy-to-understand dashboards with actionable.  It makes evaluating and understanding OKR reports and metrics easier. 

An OKR dashboard strengthens transparency and alignment in your OKR framework. Best OKR tools should highlight the objectives and their status. It makes tracking goal completion rates and alignment reports a piece of cake.

What Are You Waiting For?

Build and reinforce great OKR practices by introducing OKR software. And help your teams to prioritize and align in the best way possible.

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