I’ve recently hired someone to do SEO work on our local business website. He has been optimizing the site for speed and other things, for off site he’s been focusing on back links.

My question is, how do I keep him accountable and make sure the work he’s doing is making progress?

I already know to see first page results takes 3-12 months, however, he’s got to have something which gives me updates month to month so I can see things are actually progressing as I’m paying him. What things should I be asking him?
At a minimum:
Monthly Ranking report for target keywords
Traffic report for month compares to previous month
Google My Business Monthly Report
I think it's important to make sure you and your contractor to agree on what kind of SEO work they will be doing and try to define some KPI's off of this work. 

SEO can mean many different things - technical, on-page, off-page, etc. Some technical issues can take a while to sort out, on-page is pretty basic but can take time for large sites, off-page takes time as well. 

I don't agree with a keyword rank or traffic report as these can normally increase or decrease unless you have a base line. Good to keep a pulse on but not absolute. You could rank for keywords that don't bring in sales, or they can build up traffic that doesn't convert. Defined KPI's for your specific business are important. 

As a local company with local SEO work I would expect that you want leads and those leads in the form of phone calls, form submissions or people walking through the door. I would worry less about overall traffic and more about my organic rank for money keywords and rank for GMB site. I would also track phone calls and form submissions or however people contact you. If you don't have a way to track that now or have a CRM that does that you should. 

I would expect a report summarizing what was done that month and I would want a report that highlights tracking of GMB and organic website rank. 
Excellent question and thanks for the answers. Over past few months i have increased ad spend and engaged quite a few people for digital Mktg. Not sure what specific KPI's i should plan and monitor. Results have started coming in so I subscribed to a crm to follow up.

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