Evidence for the Feedback Role of Performance Measurement Systems

51 Pages Posted: 22 May 2018

See all articles by Shannon W. Anderson

Shannon W. Anderson

University of California, Davis - Graduate School of Management

Amanda Kimball

University of California, Davis - Graduate School of Management

Date Written: May 8, 2018

Abstract

Performance measurement systems (PMSs) are used to diagnose and remediate problems, termed the ‘decision-facilitating’ or feedback role of management control. We examine whether use of PMSs by individual decision makers is associated with better performance. Experimental studies have isolated individual-level effects of feedback on decision quality; however, it is difficult to extend these findings to natural settings. Archival and survey studies offer evidence on the association between the presence of PMSs and performance, but have had limited success in measuring decision makers’ actual use of PMSs and in addressing endogeneity of the decision to use PMSs. We use unobtrusively collected data on actual PMS use in 30 K-12 charter schools over three years to test whether teachers who make greater use of two PMSs are associated with greater growth in student learning. We find that teachers’ use of PMSs is associated with increased student learning, consistent with the premise that PMSs facilitate teacher interventions and improve student outcomes. The results are both statistically and materially significant and are better explained by PMS use than by selection effects of better teachers using PMSs. Consistent with the organization’s focus on “at risk” students, the strongest effects of teachers’ use of one PMS are concentrated among the lowest-performing students. In sum, we find broad support for the thesis that the feedback role of PMSs is associated with meaningful performance improvement.

Keywords: performance management, management information system, education sector, assessment

JEL Classification: M40, M41, I21

Suggested Citation

Anderson, Shannon W. and Kimball, Amanda, Evidence for the Feedback Role of Performance Measurement Systems (May 8, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3175490 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3175490

Shannon W. Anderson (Contact Author)

University of California, Davis - Graduate School of Management ( email )

One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616
United States

Amanda Kimball

University of California, Davis - Graduate School of Management ( email )

One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616
United States
530-752-7371 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://gsm.ucdavis.edu/amanda-kimball

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