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Performance Measurement

This page provides resources for Washington local government elected officials, managers and staff who are developing and implementing performance measurement systems.


The use of performance measures in local government is being driven by increased citizen demands for government accountability, greater interest on the part of local legislators in performance related information to assist in program evaluation and resource allocation decisions, and the efforts of various organizations and professional associations to make governments more results-oriented.

Performance measurement allows policymakers, managers, and citizens to evaluate the quality and effectiveness of government services. Performance measures include inputs (resources used), outputs (program activities), efficiency measures (ratio of inputs to outputs), and outcomes (the actual results of programs and services). Many performance measurement systems are limited to measuring program inputs and outputs. Ideally, however, performance measurement efforts will also generate information about program results and outcomes.

Articles, Papers and Reports

Online Dashboard Examples

Washington Jurisdictions

  • Seattle Performance Seattle - Highly interactive performance system that tracks metrics in six key areas. Begins with a high level but allows users to dig into the data as deep as they want. Data is updated monthly, semi-annually, or annual depending on teh data. Uses Socrata Software.
  • Spokane Spokane Performs - Provides a series of graphs on performance for the various city departments (22 different areas). While the underlying data is not accessible, users can download the graphs in various formats. Uses HighCharts software.
  • Bellingham Performance Measures - Interactive tool to view metrics in nine areas. Provides good overview information with an opportunity to see individual trends over time. Uses Insight Vision software.
  • Bellevue Performance Dashboards - Displays data in seven key areas, each with a series of metrics that track annual changes in each area. Uses Covalent Software.

Other Jurisdictions

  • Edmonton, AB Citizen Dashboard - An interactive, online portal where citizens can see the city's progress on various performance metrics. Uses Socrata software.
  • Williamsburg, VA Performance Management - Nice tabbed view of performance metrics in eight key areas. Dashboard is customizable for each user. Uses LogAnalytics software.
  • Chicago, IL Performance Metrics - Tracks information in eight areas. Easily scannable views with lots of customization options. Uses Socrata software.
  • San Mateo County, CA SMC Performance - Provides dashboards in three broad areas: progress towards the county's broad 2025 vision goals, departmental goals, and progress on a specific voter-passed initiative. Uses Socrata software.
  • Virginia DOT Dashboard - Fun dashboard that takes the name fairly literally creating a visually interesting and easily readable dashboard for citizens. Developed in-house with Microsoft development products and Dundas for the data visuals.
  • University of North Carolina UNC Data Dashboard - While not a government, the provide a robust public dashboard with high customization and data analysis opportunities. Uses SAS software.

Performance Report Examples

  • Kirkland Performance Measures - The City’s annual performance measures report demonstrates to the Kirkland community what the City is doing to achieve the city council’s goals in ten service areas. The service areas were identified as priorities by the city council.
  • Mercer Island Performance Measures - Includes a brief explanation of the city's performance measurement model and links to annual reports.
  • Redmond Community Indicators - Includes links to annual reports and information on specific indicators for eight broad community goals. While not an interactive dashboard, the information is presented in an easily accessible format.

Out-of-State Jurisdictions

  • Austin, Texas Performance Measures Database - Austin's performance measures database gives citizens an opportunity to search for performance information by department area or by keyword for the five most recent fiscal years.
  • Denver, Colorado Peak Performance Webpage - provides an overview of Denver's Peak Performance initiative with links to performance metrics, strategic plans, agency and department performance reviews and other resources.
  • Maricopa County, Arizona Managing for Results - Strategic Plans and Performance Measures

Recommended Resources

Last Modified: January 22, 2018