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Range & Fluctuation Metrics

A simple score from 0 to 100% to align your team around how often you're meeting your ideal environmental levels.

Conserv cloud is a free, cloud-based environmental monitoring tool. You can create an account at https://app.conserv.io.

The challenge

Preservation metrics should help us answer the simple question "How are we doing?" — read more in our article "Understanding Preservation Metrics".

Take the example of the common temperature and relative humidity chart so common in environmental monitoring reports.

Screenshot 2020-10-09 at 11.08.36 AM - Edited (1)

It takes a lot of calories and words to explain to your colleagues how you're doing based on the above chart.

What if instead of the typical chart you could tell your team, "Most months we meet our RH goal 99% of the time, and this month we met our RH goal 94% of the time?"

With an immediate sense of "How we're doing?" your team can then focus on the causes of good/bad performance and what you can do to improve the collection environment.

The range and fluctuation calculations

The calculation of the range and fluctuation metrics is very straightforward. Count all of your readings that are within the levels you've set and divide by the total number of readings for the period.

You could do this calculation in a spreadsheet, or you could let Conserv Cloud do it for you.

Getting range and fluctuations working for you

In this article, we're focusing on relative humidity as an example. Range and fluctuation metrics are also available for temperature and illuminance.

Setting levels

Range and fluctuation metrics rely on the levels you've set for your collection spaces. Looking at the graph below,  you can see we've made it easy to visualize your levels.

Screenshot 2020-10-11 at 8.00.26 AM - Edited

In this example, we have an RH range level between 40-60% and an RH fluctuation target of less than 10% per day.

For guidance on setting the right relative humidity levels, start with our article "Setting relative humidity (RH) levels for your collection".

A quick glance at the relative humidity KPIs on the right (red circles) shows that you’ve been staying within your target levels 94% of the time in both cases:

Screenshot 2020-10-11 at 9.11.51 AM - Edited

Note that the colors for readings are consistent across the application - Red is always RH, blue is temperature, green is illuminance, etc.

Making observations

Think of observations as the way you tell the story of your collection - for others and for your future self. Whenever your readings are outside of the ideal environmental levels you can make annotations to help diagnose the challenge.

Screenshot 2020-10-11 at 9.05.48 AM - Edited

When you combine readings, levels, metrics, and observations you have a powerful set of tools to understand and improve your collection environment.

What's next

By using KPIs, collections professionals can get their teams aligned on "how are we doing", and begin to lead the conversation on what needs to be done to improve the collection environment.

The primary purpose of good metrics is not just to answer questions; Good metrics also help your organization ask better questions to address the root cause of problems.