What are SMART(ER) Goals , and what are best practices, tools and online templates for teams and organizations?
Definition of SMART(ER) Goals
SMART(ER) Goals is a tool used to create criteria to help improve the chances of succeeding in accomplishing a performance goal. It is an acronym that can be easily remembered and referred to while creating and strategizing during the goal-setting process. As with anything, goals can change. As a result, the SMART acronym has been modified over time to include -ER to create SMARTER Goals.
Description of SMART(ER) Goals
SMART(ER) Goals stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-Bound, Evaluate and Re-Do. Setting SMART(ER) Goals helps to clarify ideas, focus individual or team efforts and efficiently use time and resources. Most importantly, using the SMART(ER) Goals framework sets the company up to succeed in achieving its goals. The following explains each part of the tool and how to best utilize it:
Specific – This first step should be viewed as a Mission Statement for the goal. It should answer the Who, What, Where, When and Why of the goal.
- Who needs to be involved in achieving the goal?
- What is the organization trying to accomplish (be specific)?
- Where is the location of the goal (not always necessary)?
- When should the goal be completed (this will be detailed further in the Time-Bound Section)?
- Why are you setting this goal?
Measurable – What metrics are going to be used to determine if the goal is met? This factor makes the goal tangible because it measures concrete progress.
Achievable – This section may require serious self-evaluation because in order to make the goal attainable. employees may be required to learn new skill or change old attitudes. If the team or its members don’t currently possess the skills required, you may need to focus additional time on what it would take in terms of resources and/or time to attain them.
Relevant – Relevance requires that the goal fits with the broader business goals of the company.
Time-Bound – If the goal lacks realistic time objectives, the chances of success decrease dramatically. It is important to provide target dates for all deliverables and decide if the goal can be accomplished within the time frame given.
As with anything, goals can change and be updated depending on the circumstances. Two additional parameters have been added over time enable goal-setters to update and improve their goals. They include the following:
Evaluate – It is important to constantly measure how your original goals measure up to reality.
Re-Do – If the original goals need amendments, simply re-do them.
It is important to ask a lot of questions during the SMART(ER) Goal setting process, because the answers will help the team fine-tune its strategy and create something that is actually achievable and more likely to be accomplished.
Tools & Templates
The tools managers can use to create and communicate SMART(ER) Goals are presentations, spreadsheets, and other strategic documents.
upBOARD's Online SMART(ER) Goals Tools & Templates
Unlike most traditional SMART(ER) Goals processes, upBOARD’s online SMART(ER) Goals tools allow any team or organization to instantly begin working with our web templates and input forms. Our digital platform goes far beyond other software tools by including progress dashboards, data integration from existing documents or other SaaS software, elegant intuitive designs, and full access on any desktop or mobile device.
Learn more about upBOARD’s portfolio of other business strategy best practice tools and templates, including:
2 X 2 Matrix, ADL Matrix, Affinity Diagrams, Baker’s 4 Strategies of Influence, Balanced Scorecard, Benchmarking, Blue Ocean Strategy, Bowman Strategy Clock, Build-Measure-Learn Feedback Loop, Business Model Canvas, CAGE Distance Framework, Competitive Analysis, Competitive Landscape Analysis, Contingency Planning, Core Competence Analysis, Critical Success Factors, Discovery Driven Planning, Economic Value Added, First Mover Advantage, Five Forces Model, Force Field Analysis, Gap Analysis, GE McKinsey 9-Box Matrix, Go To Market Strategy, Hambrick & Frederickson’s Strategy Diamond, Hedgehog Model, Hook Model of Behavioral Design, Hoshin Planning System, Kay’s Distinctive Capabilities Framework, Key Outcome Indicators, Kotler’s Five Product Levels Model, Kotler’s Pricing Strategies, Lafley & Martin’s Five Step Strategy Model, McKinsey 7S Model, McKinsey’s Seven Degrees of Freedom for Growth, Mergers & Acquisitions, Mission Statements, Mullin’s Seven Domains Model, OGSM Framework, Ohmae’s 3-C’s Model, Partner Relationship Management, PEST Analysis, PESTLE Analysis, Porter’s Diamond, Portfolio Management, Purpose Statements, Pyramid of Purpose, Scenario Planning, Simonson & Rosen’s Influence Mix, SMART Performance Metrics, SMARTER Goals, SOAR, Strategic Goals, Strategy Map, Strategy Roadmap, Strategy Uncertainty Map, SWOT Analysis, TOWS Matrix, Triple Bottom Line, USP Analysis, Value Chain Analysis, Value Disciplines Model, Value Net Model, Values Statement, Vision Statements, VRIO Analysis, and Weisbord’s Six-Box Model.