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Best OKR Software: Main Characteristics to Look For

How can you use OKRs to your advantage? Learn how to make your strategic plans transparent to everyone, prioritize work more efficiently and track key results with the help of an OKR software.

What Is OKR Software?

OKR software is a tool designed to help you visualize your organizational, team, or individual goals and key results while tracking their progress. Modern OKR solutions unlock company-wide transparency into strategic plans and align them with execution. Furthermore, OKR software lets you connect key results to actionable work items and track their completion with real-time status updates.

Regardless of your company, project, or team size, an OKR dashboard can help you share plans and priorities and get everyone on the same page about the big picture. It also enables you to track the execution of each contributing key result.

Key Characteristics of OKR Software

Today’s OKR tools have multiple functionalities to improve your work with the goal-setting framework. However, the critical attributes of a good OKR software include enabling alignment with strategic plans, tracking key results, and measuring progress toward goals. Let’s discover more.

Alignment with the Strategic Plans

One of the key characteristics of the OKR framework is the premise for a company-wide alignment of all efforts towards the same goals. With transparent goals reaching every team member, OKRs manage to spread the company’s strategic direction, incite proactive discussions, and drive employee engagement.

The OKR software you choose should be apt to clearly visualize the key OKR attributes such as owner, time frame, objective, key results, progress indication, and make these available to every company member.

portfolio kanban scheme used to align strategic plans with executionVisualizing work alignment across different organizational levels

OKR Dependencies Management

Besides transparency of the objectives and key results, dependencies are an integral part of the OKR framework. The transparency of OKR tools should show the organizational direction and how to get there through specific key results. For instance, the progress of the key results can be driven by the progress of various team initiatives or work items.

Another trait to look for is the ability to establish dependencies between objectives within the OKR software. For example, a team may have set 3 quarterly objectives whose execution needs to happen consecutively, or they depend on the OKRs of another team/business area within the company. It's important to visualize those connections to keep all stakeholders on the same page.

Feedback and Goals Review Opportunities

Objectives and key results enable focusing on what’s most important for your business. To address prioritization and achieve focused work, the framework promotes goals’ evaluation and encourages feedback.

Modern OKR platforms facilitate such evaluation through various customizable individual, team, or departmental reviews. Furthermore, OKR tools provide multiple ways to submit feedback, comments, or reflections that can be addressed during meetings and discussions.

Measuring The Progress of Key Results

A cornerstone of the success of OKRs is measuring how you achieve the goals your team has set. Tracking the progress of your team goals shows if they are staying on track and the ones falling behind.

Advanced OKR tools introduce functionalities such as score completion to indicate the progress of goals and real-time calculation of the results. Through visualization of goal completion, status messages, alerts, or automated notifications, OKR tools offer inventive ways to demonstrate how things are moving forward.

How to Choose the Right OKR Tool?

Getting buy-in from the majority and adhering to the chosen platform on all levels are key considerations you need to address when choosing an OKR tool.

Step 1. Set and visualize all OKRs.

Step 2. Ensure that OKRs are linked across teams and departments in the company.

Step 3. Monitor and track OKRs on the same platform.

Step 4. Select cadences frequency for goals evaluation on each organizational level.

Step 5. Review and assess OKRs based on analytics and reports available in the OKR software.

6 Best OKR Tools

Needless to say, OKR software as a service solution (SaaS) is the fundamental trait of each modern OKR tool. Secured access from any remote location and instant updates are no longer enough. Outstanding OKR solutions provide enhanced visualizations, wide customization options, advanced OKRs tracking, analytics, integrations, and more.

Let’s look at some OKR software that are worth exploring.

1. Kanbanize

Kanbanize is a Lean/Agile work management platform that can help you visualize objectives and key results on a shared Kanban board to achieve greater alignment between strategy and execution. In Kanbanize, this happens by creating your high-level company or team goals as Initiatives and setting their key results to pursue as Outcomes.

okrs trackingVisualization of key results’ progress using Outcomes in Kanbanize

With Kanbanize, you can achieve transparency between goals, outcomes and specific work items contributing to the progress of each objective, visualize the dependencies between various teams and track all progress in a single place.

Features

  • Wide OKRs customization options (values, properties, details)
  • Visualize different outcome scenarios based on your goals
  • Trends graph to measure the progress of key results
  • Ability to add, edit, or delete historical data
  • Colored indicators of progress

2. Gtmhub

The orchestration system that Gtmhub has to offer includes employee success and OKR management features. The easy-to-use graphic interface with drag-and-drop functionality makes setting and connecting objectives and key results easy and straightforward. The software allows you to set parent and child OKRs, and track their progress on your Home screen in real-time.

Features

  • OKR templates
  • Easy-to-use sticky notes
  • Owners and co-owners of OKRs
  • Drag and drop alignment view of the OKR hierarchy structure
  • Multiple reports – Insightboards

3. Perdoo

Perdoo’s goal management tool allows you to connect OKRs and KPIs in one place. Using an OKR roadmap, you can visualize how different levels of OKRs connect to each other. The software offers a view of the historical performance of company goals using strategic timelines and various reports.

Features

  • OKR Roadmap
  • Weekly progress reports
  • Private OKRs and KPIs
  • Growth board
  • Data export and import

4. Koan

Koan’s OKR platform offers straightforward visualization of measurable team goals. The software includes basic but fundamental functionalities, including real-time status updates, reflection insights, and feedback aiming to boost team alignment and collaboration.

Features

  • Personal OKR and tracking of goals
  • Company OKR dashboard
  • Tracking OKRs of multiple teams
  • OKR data export

5. Leapsome

Leapsome’s goals management solution allows you to visualize strategic plans and track their execution regardless of the goal-setting model you use. Leapsome creates a structure for your personal, team, or organizational goals visualizing ownership and internal dependencies.

Features

  • Progress Timelines
  • Automatic progress updates
  • Feedback and praise opportunities
  • Activity feed
  • Goal analytics

6. Profit.co

Profit is a software solution that supports strategy execution through OKRs, task, and performance management. The goal-setting software uses a cascading style of objectives and key results visualization to help align everyone with the company goals. You can choose between different types of key results to indicate their completion more accurately. The software offers real-time insights into goals’ completion and performance at every organizational level.

Features

  • Different types of key results
  • Filtering and export functionalities
  • Aligning multiple OKRs and connecting individual tasks to key results
  • Comments, mentions, tags, status
  • Automated reminders

In Summary

Today’s OKR tools offer visualization of team, organizational, or individual goals and key results, as well as monitoring and tracking their progress. The list of key characteristics of OKR software includes: 

  • Visualization of objectives and key results 
  • Visualizing dependencies between objectives, across teams or functions 
  • Monitoring and measuring the progress of objectives and key results in real-time 

Start your free trial now and get access to all Kanbanize features.

During the 14-day trial period you can invite your team and test the application in a production-like enviroment.