The establishment of Key Performance Indicators (KPI) within any business is absolutely essential. Aligned to strategy they provide the means by which the health of the business may be properly assessed.
KPIs should be set early to support the achievement of business goals and objectives. Once established at a high level they should be able to be decomposed so that business activity, no matter, how fine grained, can have its contribution traced to it source.
Having processes are in place that ensure that metrics are captured then measured against the planned or expected outcomes permits decision makers to determine if remedial action is required to compensate for any negative results.
The feedback provided by having reliable metrics enables the opportunity to engage in business process improvement or to refine business strategy and the consequent business goals and objectives to reflect reality.
Without the definition and on-going management of KPIs a business can have no real insight into how it is performing.
Without insight the business risks failure.