Another method of measuring and monitoring performance is through the use of financial ratios and other comparative tools.
Financial ratios use information contained in reports such as the balance sheet and the profit and loss statement. From this information, calculations can be made which provide an indication as to the overall performance of the business. The results of these calculations can be used to compare the performance of the business against targets (as established in the budgeting process) or against the performance of similar businesses (through benchmarking exercises).
The calculations can take the form of ratios which provide an easy figure by which comparisons are made.
There are many financial ratios that are used to measure financial performance of a business, however for the purposes of this module we will look at the principal ratios used to assess: