Monitoring performance

Monitoring performance

Keeping on top of your business's performance is essential, and here you'll find valuable information to help you do exactly that.

Assessing your business performance

It's essential that you maintain a clear view of your business's performance - especially in a challenging economic climate. The day-to-day running of your business can occupy you the most - dealing with customers and staff, orders and sales admin. But your business needs you to step away from the day to day sometimes to reflect and look to the future.

The three key business measures you need to keep a close eye on:

  • Profitability - measuring your income against costs
  • Efficiency - measuring whether your business is using its assets as well as it can
  • Liquidity - how your assets measure up against your liabilities.

The essential key success factors:

  • The importance of business planning
  • Finding and retaining customers
  • Managing your finances
  • Working with your local business advisers.

Regional Purchasing Managers' Index

When planning ahead in business, having hard, up-to-date facts on the economic experiences of other companies can be invaluable. That's exactly what the Lloyds Bank Regional Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) provides.

Produced monthly, the PMI reveals how business conditions compare with the previous month. It shows key statistics on various business activities including output, new orders, employment and prices - all broken down by region. The detail comes from a representative panel of companies in each region of England and Wales, operating in the manufacturing and service sectors.

Compiled by economists at Markit Economics, the PMIs have become one of the most closely watched business surveys around. You can access both the most recent and previous months' PMI reports from this page.

For each business activity surveyed, the index numbers range from 0 to 100:

  • A score over 50 shows and increase or improvement in the particular activity
  • Below 50 indicates a decline
  • While exactly 50 signals no change.

Business forecasting

Business forecasting Forecasting is about two things. Firstly, it’s about anticipating the future for your business – its likely performance and needs. So it’s about estimating fundamentals such as sales, expenditure or your borrowing requirements. Preparing this information is an essential part of your business planning.

Secondly, it’s about regularly reviewing your predicted figures against your actual results as you move through the forecast period. This allows you to see what’s happening in your business and be proactive in managing any changes that may be necessary.

Our guide provides you with a straightforward explanation of the fundamentals of forecasting, its benefits, and how it can help you understand and manage your business better.

Key accounting ratios

Do you know exactly how healthy your business is financially? Working out some key accounting ratios can tell you.

Your business records, such as your accounts, balance sheet and budget, hold all the financial information you need. If you’ve got the information, whatever size your business is, calculating some key ratios will show you its current state of health.

The three most revealing ratios are probably those that tell you how profitable your business is, what its solvency levels are and what return you’re getting on its assets. Our guide shows you how to work out these and other ratios. Together they help build a picture of how your business is performing, enabling you to make more informed decisions about your future direction.

Businesses are doing it right

Trevor Williams

As the latest data suggests that the British economy could be defying predictions of the dreaded double-dip, Lloyds Bank's Chief Economist, Trevor Williams, gives his opinions on the figures that matter and what it means for UK businesses.

Business Support teams

If your business is experiencing difficult times, our Business Support teams are here to support you.

They offer broad commercial experience which they combine with detailed knowledge of the business and financial resources available to you - both from Lloyds Bank and elsewhere. Our Business Support teams also recognise that every business is unique - so they'll work closely with you to understand yours. This will include carrying out an in-depth assessment of your business, your markets and your particular circumstances. Then, having gained these insights, they'll help you plan the next best steps for your business.

Case study

Signing up to Monthly PricePlan means we can secure the amount we pay with a fixed monthly fee, so it's much easier to forecast our outgoings.
Read the full case study
John Siggers
Frames UK Pictures Ltd

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