When to use a Weighted Decision Matrix

When to use a Weighted Decision Matrix?

A weighted decision matrix should be used to reach an answer when you have a choice between a number of different options that provide a solution to your question or problem. Furthermore, you need to consider each option against a number of factors involved in the decision making process. For example, when choosing a holiday, you have many potential destinations to choose between and must consider each against factors such as cost and the weather.

Some decisions are easy, some are much more difficult because of the number of options to choose between and the factors involved in the decision.  Do I eat an apple or an orange is a simple question to answer and we’re guessing not many people would need a weighted decision matrix for that one, but what if you’re deciding something much more complex?  For example, you need to pick a school for your child to attend or you need to decide which software solution meets your employers complex needs?  Suddenly there are many more factors to consider and the weighted decision matrix comes into play. Take the choice of school: things to consider would include the standard of teaching; the distance from home; are little Jimmy’s friends also going there; the sporting facilities; after school care etc.  The weighted decision matrix allows you to weight each of those factors by importance so that you can make a decision based on what are actually the most important factors.  Giving each factor a value strips out some of the emotion involved when taking a decision because you are being honest with yourself about what really matters.  Jimmy will be able to make new friends so that factor from a practical point of view is less important than the distance from home the school is.  In this way your decision becomes an objective rather than a subjective one.  Now you can go and download one of our weighted decision matrix templates and start to think about the decisions you need to make.

Example of a Weighted Decision Matrix

Who will win Strictly Come Dancing?

Come Dancing

A Weighted Decision Matrix can be used for all sorts of things, even Strictly! Complete a matrix with your friends!

So Strictly Come Dancing started has started again and in my house this has brought on much excitement. As there’s a three week gap before the whole Strictly thing really starts I thought it’d be fun to put the runners and riders through a weighted decision matrix to see who will win. I’m a reluctant Strictly fan, the sort who peers over the top of my book when Russell Grant is about to be fired out of a cannon or when it’s time for the show dances, so I suggest you choose your own factors and favourite contestants as my judgement in this area will not be good!

This blog was written back in 2012 so is a little out of date. However the same principles apply so have a read and then download a weighted decision matrix template.

The five candidates who got onto my shortlist have not got there because of their dancing ability, I have chosen them because in Brucie’s words, “they’re my favourites”. So you won’t find any soap stars, pop stars or wannabe’s, I prefer Michael Vaughan because I love cricket; Jerry Hall for a good first impression; Louise Smith and Victoria Pendleton for inspiring us all during the Olympics and lastly I chose Johnny Ball for nostalgic and “he’s a top guy” reasons. Let’s face it, Strictly is formulaic and contestants are picked to fit various stereotypes. These are the ones that appeal to me.

So onto the factors to judge them by and frankly, I haven’t a clue so kept it simple and in looking for a winner plumped for important things such as “Fan base” and “Appeal”. Sex appeal is also very important, if anything is going to get dad to rise out of his seat to vote this is it! Practical factors are important as well so “Stamina” has to be rated as after all they have got to last about 6 months or so before it’s all over haven’t they? The last factor is “Dance ability” as that has to come into it somewhere along the line, surely!

Do you agree with my weightings and assessment or have I got it all as wrong as John Sergeant a few years back? Let us know in the comments below.

Who will win strictly come dancing

What to look for when buying a house

buying a house

The weighted decision matrix is the perfect tool to use to compare one house against another.

Buying a house will be the single most expensive decision you ever make. Considering you will be living there for a good few years and paying for it for even longer it’s probably best you give it some thought!

Talking to an estate agent recently, I was amazed when they told me that some people will have a 10 minute walk around the house then make an offer. Stop! Don’t do that, make a list of everything you need to factor into the decision and then use one of our weighted decision matrix templates.

We’ve thought of a few things you need to consider but let us know if you’ve got anything we’ve missed via the comments.

I’ll skip over the cost, hopefully by now you will have researched what you can afford and at least have a target price in mind. If not then there are loads of mortgage calculators our their to help you. Everyone always says that the most important factor is location, location, location and you know what they’re right! But check it out properly, the house might be in the right place but if it takes 10 minutes to turn out of the drive in the morning because of traffic you might want to think again. Has that ever happened to you?

So here are some things to consider but if you want a really exhaustive list of everything to consider and more besides check out the link to money saving expert at the bottom.

First of all, on viewing the property do you smile, do you whisper, “I love it” to your partner? Has it got the wow factor? This is a gut feel, emotional response but who wants to get all objective about buying your home? Well, actually we do because emotion is all well and good but it doesn’t pay for the damp in the loft you forgot to check out or the plumbing that doesn’t work properly does it? So, always do a proper fault check and let your head rule your heart on this one. Any faults needn’t be a deal breaker just negotiate the cost of repair off of the price.

Consider the distance to work and or school. Are they in opposite directions for example! Obvious but not everyone thinks this through apparently and you don’t want to be racing to work everyday, stressed and late do you now.

Is the neighbourhood as good as you think or is it actually better than expected? Talk to people, talk to the local policeman and post office owner. They will all have valuable insights and experience you may not have.

Lastly, it’s nice to have a big garden isn’t it? Actually it isn’t if you hate cutting the grass, weeding or picking up leaves in the autumn so be realistic and don’t become a slave to it.

which house should I buy

So much to think about isn’t there? What tips do you have when buying a house? Please let us know in the comments and use the decision matrix here.

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