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The fundamental premise for measuring an organization or project is to collect data directly related to the objectives of the company. To help organizations focus on the desired measurements, a distinction is made between two general categories: hard data and soft data. The following provides a description and general list data points for each category. Hard data is the primary measurement for improvement, presented through rational, undisputed facts that are easily gathered. This is the most desirable type of data to collect. The ultimate criteria for measuring the effectiveness of management rests on hard data items such as productivity, profitability, cost control, and quality control.
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