An objective is the end or ends that an organisation is trying to achieve. Typically, objectives will be set at a number of levels, e.g:
Objectives, wherever possible, should be SMART i.e:
Specific – clear and easy to understand.
Measurable – i.e. able to be quantified.
Achievable – possible to be attained.
Realistic – not ‘pie in the sky’.
Time bound – associated with a specific time period.
Public sector organisations like the Inland Revenue set objectives for service, such as processing customers’ tax returns within a given time period.
Private sector organisations like Kelloggs might set objectives for customer satisfaction, and effectiveness in handling customer orders within a given time period. Visit Kelloggs
Objectives are the ends to be achieved, whereas the strategies or plans are the means to achieve these ends.