Key Results & Milestones

Creating Key Results

Setting Metrics

Setting Range Objectives and Key Results

Setting Reduction Objectives and Key Results

Assigning Key Results to Other People

Cloning Key Results

Owning Key Results On Other People's Objectives

Combined Key Results and Metrics Within One Objective

Using Metrics to Calculate Overall Objective Progress

Progress Settings

Commenting On Key Results




Creating Key Results

To create milestones, simply navigate to the section of the objective create page that reads "Add a Key Result." Click into this field and enter the name of the Key Result. Press Enter to save it.

Users can also create key results for other people if they need collaboration to complete a goal. Clicking the user pic next to the milestone during or after creation opens the option to assign the milestone to someone else.


Setting Metrics

Metrics enhance and add measurable detail to milestones.

When a user enters a name for the milestone, the “Set metric?” option appears.

  1. Click Set metric? to display metric options.
  2. The first field is the target. Enter a numeric target for the metric.
  3. The second field is the for units. Enter a unit like dollars, meetings, or leads.
  4. Optionally, click Advanced to specify a starting value for the metric.
  5. Click Add to save the metric.

Clicking back in the text field exposes the Remove metric option. Click it to delete the metric, but keep the milestone.


Setting Range Objectives and Key Results

  1. To set a range metric, create or edit a goal and click Set Metric? The metric options appear.
  2. Enter a target value and unit.
  3. Click Advanced. The advanced options appear.
  4. Click the checkbox marked “Activate range capability for this metric.” The range settings appear.
  5. Optionally, enter the yellow breakpoints. These numbers are warning limits for the range goal; if progress hits either yellow limit, the goal will become at risk.
  6. Enter the red breakpoints. These numbers are upper and lower limits for the range goal; if progress hits either red limit, it means the goal is no longer meeting the target range. When all the breakpoint fields and the starting value are filled in, a mockup of the range fields appears.
  7. Click Save.


Setting Reduction Objectives and Key Results

To create a reduction metric, navigate to the goal detail page or create a new goal.

  1. Enter a new milestone and click Set metric?
  2. In the target value field, enter the target value to achieve. In the example below, the desired result is to reduce average call time to 20 minutes, so the target value is 20 minutes.
  3. Click Advanced to expose the “Enter starting value” checkbox.
  4. Click the checkbox. A text field appears.
  5. Enter the starting value in the text field. In this example, the starting value is 45 because the current call times are 45 minutes and the user wants to reduce that number.
  6. Click Add.

When a user adds a new reduction metric, the starting value displays before the target value. This means they’ve done it correctly; the point is to reduce the starting value to the target value.

To track progress against this metric, the user should enter the current value of the unit. For example, if average call time reduced from 45 to 30 minutes, the user would check in with 30 minutes as the amount.

Using reduction goals

Users can also track reduction progress for goals, not just metrics. To track reduction progress on a goal, there must be at least one numerical metric for the goal.

  1. Open the Action menu during goal creation or in the goal detail page.
  2. Click Progress Settings to open the Progress menu.
  3. Click Advanced to expose the starting value option.
  4. Enter the value this goal will start from.
  5. Click Save.


Assigning Key Results to Other People

Some goals are too big to achieve alone. You may need to delegate an action, track someone else’s contribution, or just share the load a little bit. If you need to, you can assign milestones on your goals to other people. Assigning milestones to others can help clearly identify areas of responsibility, or highlight horizontal dependencies that might impact your overall progress on the goal.

This is a great way to track your team’s work when your team contributes to your goals, but don’t have goals of their own to align to yours. For example, a regional sales lead may have a goal to close a certain number of deals this quarter. They divide the goal into different milestones, and assign each milestone to a different member of the sales team.

You can also assign milestones to other people to track horizontal dependencies. For example, a marketing manager needs a go-to-market plan for their company’s new product. A member of the product team provides the first draft of the plan, so the marketing manager creates a milestone for that action and assigns it to the product team member.

Assign a milestone to someone else during the goal creation process, or from the goal’s detail page.

  1. Find the milestone you wish to reassign.

  2. Click the milestone owner to open the reassignment menu.
  3. Type or scroll and click to select the person to whom you want to assign the milestone.
  4. The milestone updates to reflect the new owner.

The new owner receives an email letting them know they’re responsible for a new milestone. Your goal will also appear in their goal list, so they can keep track of their milestone and its overall progress.


Cloning Key Results

Do you have goals that are similar to some of your teammates? Do you have similar goals every quarter? If you answered yes to either of these questions, you may not want to create new milestones for every new goal. Save some time by cloning milestones on any goal.

  1. Go to the goal detail page and find the milestone you want to clone.
  2. Click into the actions menu.
  3. Click Clone.
  4. The new milestone appears below the original one.

Now that you’ve cloned a milestone, you can edit it however you like; change the name, add metrics, and more. You may also have cloned the milestone in order to reassign it to another person, or move it to another goal.



Owning Key Results On Other People's Objectives

Completing your own goals and milestones isn’t the only way to make progress in BetterWorks. You can also own milestones within other people’s goals.

Milestones can be key steps or measures of success that add up to completing a goal. By default, you own all of the milestones on your goals, but if you need to, you can assign milestones to someone else. Similarly, anyone can assign a milestone on their own goal to you.


Calculating overall progress with milestones

Your individual progress is a composite calculation based on all your goals and other contributions. When BetterWorks calculates individual progress, your work across all goals is averaged to generate your individual progress bar. Whether you’re the owner of a goal or simply contributing a milestone to someone else’s, your work is averaged to calculate overall progress.

The more work you do to complete goals and milestones, the more your progress bar grows.

But working on your own goals isn’t the only way to make progress. When you own a milestone on someone else’s goal, it also counts toward your overall progress for the period.

To get 100% for the period, complete all your own goals and any milestones you own on other people’s goals… but remember, goals should be aspirational. If you set ambitious goals, you may not achieve all of them completely, and that’s okay.


Combined Key Results and Metrics Within One Objective

Being able to count on accurate, up-to-date goal progress lends confidence and promotes transparency within an organization.

BetterWorks has enhanced metric tracking features and flexible goal progress calculation to make sure everything is measured accurately. This framework also allows for more realistic OKR tracking. These settings are optional; goals can be as simple or complex as needed.

The basic types of goal measurements haven’t changed. Goal progress is measured in two ways.

  • Key Results are actions and achievements that contribute to goals. For example, a milestone could be “Complete orientation class with all new sales reps.”
  • Key Results have metric attributes, which have a specific target value and unit that track goal progress. For example, a metric could have a target of “800,000” and a unit of “Dollars.”

Users can set Key Results, with or without metrics, during the goal creation process, or afterward, in the goal detail page. They can add Key Results at any time, so they can use goal creation to focus on the goal itself, without worrying about making decisions about progress types.

Goal progress is calculated based on whether the goal uses Key Results with or without metrics. By default, BetterWorks calculates goal progress as an average of the progress made on the goal’s Key Results and metrics.

  • If a goal is measured by combined metrics and milestones, progress is calculated as an average of both.

  • If a goal is measured by milestones only, progress is calculated as an average of the milestones.

  • If a goal is measured by metrics with only one unit, progress is calculated as an average of the metrics.

  • If a goal is measured by one type of metric only, progress is calculated by adding the metric values together.

Users can further customize goal progress by setting a custom goal target.


Using Metrics to Calculate Overall Objective Progress

If a goal’s metrics are all tracked with the same unit (for example, four different metrics, each with a unit of dollars), the overall progress for the goal is calculated as a sum of all metrics corresponding to that unit.


In this example, the five metrics have targets that total up to 850,000 dollars. Once this goal is created, its progress is tracked by adding up the values of the four metrics and comparing the total against the overall target value of 850,000 dollars. This goal’s target is set to $800,000, so the target value may be achieved without achieving 100% of each milestone’s value.


Progress Settings<

Some users may not want goal progress to be calculated by averaging metric values and milestones. They can use the “Progress Settings” option to calculate goal progress exclusively by metric values.

For example, an account executive with a sales revenue goal may judge most of her progress by the revenue metric, but also wish to show the actions she is taking to achieve that goal. She tracks her work by revenue, training sessions, and other accomplishments, and she wants to see all of them in her goal, while only calculating progress based on revenue earned.

She can use the “Progress Settings” option to calculate her goal’s overall progress based only on the revenue metric, while continuing to track her work with milestones.

  1. Click Progress Settings in the goal creation or goal detail pages.
  2. Enter a target value and unit for this goal. In this example, the sales rep wants to contribute $500,000 toward quarterly progress, so that amount becomes the target and unit.
  3. Optionally, click Advanced to reveal a text field in which to enter a starting value.

    Using this field turns the goal into a reduction goal. For more information on reduction goals, read Setting reduction goals and milestones.
  4. Click Save.

The metrics that contribute to goal progress are indicated by a grey target icon appears alongside any metrics that are part of the goal’s progress calculation. The grey target is an indicator that the metric unit beside it is contributing to the goal’s overall progress.


Updating goal targets automatically

By default, when you set a target and link it to a metric on your goal, that target is fixed until you update it. However, sometimes you need to track multiple milestones with the same unit, or you update the metric on which the target is based, and you want the target to reflect the change.

If you set the initial target to 10 customer calls, then add 5 more calls later on, the target value will update as long as they’re tracked by the same unit.

It’s easy to set target values to update automatically.

  1. Navigate to the goal detail page and click into the actions menu.
  2. Click Progress settings.
  3. Set the target value and choose a unit. If you’ve already customized the target, your previous settings will appear in this modal. Then, check the checkbox marked “Auto.”
  4. When you’ve made the changes you need, click Save.

Checking the “Auto” checkbox makes the goal’s target value update automatically based on changes to the value of the unit assigned.


Commenting On Key Results

Comment threads are the bread and butter of social interactions on goals. Comments on a goal’s timeline are great to discuss the goal as a whole, but comments on milestones are even better if you need specific, granular discussion about goal progress.

Regardless of whether a comment is on a goal or a milestone, they all appear in the Timeline, so it’s easy to track the conversations in one place.

Leave a comment on any milestone, even milestones you own.

  1. Navigate to the goal detail page.
  2. Scroll to the milestone you would like to leave a comment on.
  3. Click the Comment button. The comment window opens. 
  4. Type a comment and click Comment
  5. The comment appears in the Conversations section of the Timeline at the bottom of the goal detail page.



How often should I check in?

Try to check into your goals at least once a week. A check in doesn't necessarily show positive progress, but rather awareness of the goal and your efforts to complete it.

Check in weekly and provide an update on the work you're doing to achieve your goal, even if you didn't complete a milestone or advance the metric. Your colleagues and manager will appreciate it! 

Can I edit my objective once I start making progress?

Yes. You should absolutely edit your goal to reflect the latest understanding of how to achieve an outcome. All edits are tracked in the goal Timeline, so you can change whatever you like without losing the history of your goal. 

Of course you should follow the procedures your organization uses to make major changes to work goals. If you need to communicate with your manager and coworkers about why a goal is changing, be sure to do that as well.

How is the objective progress color calculated?

This status is calculated by goal progress / expected progress. Expected progress assumes the goal will be completed on a linear timeline.

  • If the goal's current progress is less than 25% behind expected progress, the goal will be green
  • If the goal's current progress is at least 25% behind expected progress, the goal will be yellow
  • If the goal's current progress is at least 50% behind expected progress, the goal will be red

How do I change the Target Value of my objective?

On the goal detail page, open the Actions menu and select Progress Settings.

How do I set up advanced progress settings?

Advanced progress settings can be configured via the Progress Settings section in either the goal create or goal detail page. Locate the "Actions" button (signified by an ellipsis) and then select "Progress settings". Once in the Progress Settings section, click on the gear icon to open the advanced options.


Advanced progress settings allow you to set range and reduction settings for your goal.

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