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Multi-criteria Analysis

Rating items on multiple criteria

To rate a list of items on multiple criteria, Leaders simply

  1. highlight an existing Rating (sheet) in the Agenda
  2. add another Rating (sheet) via the 'Plus' menu of the toolbar
  3. confirm that they wish to extend the existing Rating

Extension of a Rating on one criterion by another Rating on another criterion creates a "Multi-criteria analysis": In addition to the new Rating sheet, results table and chart, MeetingSphere automatically adds a Multi-criteria results table and a Multi-criteria results chart.

As a MeetingSphere Leader (MeetingSphere One), you can rate any list on up to 3 criteria. For advanced analysis on more criteria, upgrade to a Facilitator license (MeetingSphere Pro).

Rating on multiple criteria works just like multiple independent ratings, EXCEPT that in Multi-criteria analysis

  • The list of items is identical on all rating sheets (changes apply to all)
  • Anonymity settings run across all rating sheets (changes apply to all)

Moreover, you should stick to one Rating method if possible: It is much easier to analyze results across criteria if they are in the same 'space'.

Also, limit the number of items on which you run a full-fledged Multi-criteria analysis. If you have a long list of items, run a 'cut-off' vote on a criterion items must meet to qualify for in-depth analysis. For example, when looking for measures, rate them for 'effectiveness'. Then analyze the 10 (or 20) 'most effective' items on, for instance, how they affect 'Problem A', 'Problem B' and 'Problem C' or whatever may interest you.

Analysis of results in the Multi-criteria Results table

The Multi-criteria table displays the results for all criteria side-by-side.

  • For a summary score across all criteria, display column 'All criteria'
  • For a summary value for each criterion, display row 'Mean of column'

Columns can be hidden or displayed with a switch in the column header when you open 'Table settings' with the cogwheel  toolbar button.

To see quickly which items come score highest/lowest for any criterion, click on the relevant column header.

If you have voted 'by team', use the team comparison widget of the bottom status bar to see how teams are aligned or differ in their assessments.

Highlight 'High Standard Deviation' to spot controversy. If specific items are controversial regarding multiple criteria, this may indicate a lack of (shared) understanding of that item.

Accessibility of the table

Since you and your group may want to analyze some results of your multi-criteria analysis while some ratings are still in progress, Multi-criteria tables are not blocked by a progress meter. Columns whose single results table or chart would be barred by a 'progress meter' will simply show a label, 'in progress'.

To access the Results for that criterion, simply 'close' the Rating sheet.

Note that if you have good cause to enable access to the results while rating is in progress, you can do so by selecting the relevant option in the 'Other' settings tab of the Rating sheet.

Decision making

If you are trying to reach a decision in the group, Multi-criteria analysis will often provide a robust basis for that decision, especially, if you have run your analysis after a Discussion on the relevant criteria.

However, the table will not make the decision for you. Use it as a basis for reaching a conclusion. That conclusion will depend on whether you are looking for a 'broad' solution i.e. something that scores well across all criteria, or wether one criterion is clearly more important than the others which merely need to be 'satisfied' (good enough), not optimized.

Multi-criteria analysis is, of course, an excellent way of presenting the opinion of the group to decision makers outside the 'room'.