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Balanced Scorecard


The Balanced Scorecard is a strategic performance management tool that allows organizations to track their performance across multiple key performance indicators (KPIs). Developed by Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton in the early 1990s, it evaluates organizational performance from four perspectives: financial, customer, internal processes, and learning and growth. By having a broader view of the business, it helps management align their operational activities with the company’s overall vision and long-term objectives.


The phonetics of the keyword “Balanced Scorecard” in the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) would be:/bəˈlænst ˈskɔrkɑrd/

Key Takeaways

  1. The Balanced Scorecard is a strategic management system that helps organizations translate their vision and strategy into actionable objectives and performance measures.
  2. It measures performance from four perspectives: financial, customer, internal processes, and learning and growth, providing a more holistic view of the organization’s performance.
  3. By aligning these performance measures with the organization’s strategy, the Balanced Scorecard promotes continuous improvement, enables better decision-making, and effectively communicates progress towards strategic goals to stakeholders.


The Balanced Scorecard is important in business and finance as it enables organizations to effectively measure, manage, and improve their overall performance by aligning strategic objectives with key performance indicators. This multifaceted approach goes beyond traditional financial metrics, taking into account four primary perspectives: financial, customer, internal processes, and learning and growth. By focusing on these dimensions, businesses can monitor various aspects of their operations, ensuring they achieve a comprehensive understanding of their progress towards set goals. Consequently, the Balanced Scorecard promotes well-informed decision making, efficient resource allocation, and harmonization of employees’ efforts in driving organizational success.


The Balanced Scorecard (BSC) serves as a strategic management tool, designed to assist organizations in achieving their short and long-term financial objectives, while concurrently addressing nonfinancial elements that contribute to a business’s overall success. By providing a holistic framework for gauging performance, the BSC enables businesses to strike a balance between financial and nonfinancial factors, such as customer satisfaction, internal processes, and capacity for learning and growth. By monitoring these predetermined key performance indicators (KPIs), organizations can align their goals, initiatives, and resources to achieve sustainable growth and operational excellence.

Rather than merely relying on traditional financial metrics, such as revenue and profit, the Balanced Scorecard allows businesses to advance towards a comprehensive performance measurement system that captures multiple dimensions of a company’s health. Employing this approach enables organizations to understand and communicate the connections between their strategic objectives and the actions needed to accomplish them, expanding the organization’s overall knowledge, capabilities, and responsiveness. As a result, the BSC can drive improvements in decision-making, resource allocation, and strategy implementation, contributing to an enterprise culture focused on value creation and continual advancement.


1. Apple Inc.: Recognized for its innovative technology and product design, Apple Inc. utilizes the Balanced Scorecard approach to assess their performance comprehensively. By setting objectives and measuring performance across several perspectives such as customer satisfaction, internal process efficiency, employee development, and financial growth, Apple continues to innovate, meet customer needs, and maintain its position as a technological giant.

2. Volkswagen Group: The automobile manufacturer Volkswagen also employs the Balanced Scorecard approach in managing its business activities. The company focuses on financial aspects, customer and market development, employee development, and internal processes to evaluate its overall performance. With the help of the Balanced Scorecard, Volkswagen has been able to streamline its processes, better identify and address customer preferences, and prioritize research and development investment for long-term growth and profitability.

3. Bank of America: In the financial industry, Bank of America is an excellent example of an organization that has implemented the Balanced Scorecard approach for strategic management. The bank evaluates its performance across customer perspective, financial perspective, internal business processes, and learning and growth perspective, enabling it to adapt to changing market conditions, build strong customer relationships, and ensure its long-term success. For example, the bank has introduced numerous digital services to improve customer experience and achieve operational efficiency.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is the Balanced Scorecard?

The Balanced Scorecard is a strategic management and performance measurement tool that helps organizations monitor and improve their performance across four key perspectives: financial, customer, internal processes, and learning & growth.

Who developed the Balanced Scorecard?

The Balanced Scorecard was first introduced by Dr. Robert Kaplan and Dr. David Norton in 1992 in an article published in the Harvard Business Review.

What are the four key perspectives of the Balanced Scorecard?

The four key perspectives consist of financial, customer, internal processes, and learning & growth.1. Financial: Measures an organization’s profitability, growth, and shareholder value.2. Customer: Focuses on customer satisfaction, market share, and customer loyalty.3. Internal Processes: Assesses the efficiency and effectiveness of an organization’s key operations.4. Learning & Growth: Evaluates an organization’s capacity to innovate, improve, and grow by developing employees, infrastructure, and technology.

Why is the Balanced Scorecard useful for businesses?

The Balanced Scorecard aids businesses in aligning their strategy with their operational activities, setting objectives, identifying key performance indicators (KPIs), measuring performance, and improving overall efficiency and effectiveness. It provides a holistic view of an organization’s performance, ensuring that multiple perspectives are considered during decision-making processes.

How does the Balanced Scorecard relate to Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)?

KPIs are quantifiable metrics used to evaluate an organization’s performance and determine if strategic objectives are being met. The Balanced Scorecard acts as a framework for selecting, organizing, and tracking relevant KPIs across the four key perspectives.

How often should organizations update their Balanced Scorecard?

Regular monitoring and updating of the Balanced Scorecard is crucial for ongoing performance management. The frequency of updates depends on the specific organization, industry, and strategic objectives. However, reviewing the Balanced Scorecard at least quarterly, semi-annually, or annually is recommended.

Can the Balanced Scorecard be used in both for-profit and non-profit organizations?

Yes, the Balanced Scorecard can be adapted for use in both for-profit and non-profit organizations. While financial measures may be more relevant for for-profit organizations, non-profit organizations can still use the Balanced Scorecard to measure their financial sustainability and other non-financial perspectives like customer satisfaction, internal processes, and learning & growth.

How can organizations implement the Balanced Scorecard?

To implement a Balanced Scorecard approach, organizations should:1. Define their strategic objectives and vision.2. Identify and map their objectives to the four key perspectives.3. Develop KPIs for each objective.4. Establish targets for each KPI.5. Monitor performance through regular data collection and analysis.6. Develop and implement improvement initiatives based on the analysis.7. Review and modify the Balanced Scorecard as business needs evolve.

Related Finance Terms

  • Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Performance Measurement
  • Financial Perspective
  • Non-Financial Perspectives (Customer, Internal Business Process, Learning & Growth)

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