A dynamic dashboard combines a single source of truth with transparency and inspires action. It helps everyone stay on track with their work, and it promotes a confident, collaborative, and transparent corporate culture.
Whether you’re a marketing team leader tracking KPIs or a CEO raising a round with investors, you need dashboards that make your most important metrics easy to find and understand.
Defining Your Purpose
Creating a dashboard requires a lot of time and effort to collect raw data, replicate it across multiple systems and perform ingestion and transformation tasks to produce analytics-ready information. So, it is important to know what your goals are before you begin and that starts with identifying who will be using the dashboard on a regular basis.
A successful dashboard is one that can evolve alongside a business, updating to reflect new data sets https://cobit-solutions.com/en/. This requires a flexible architecture that is able to connect and display metrics in a way that makes sense for the users.
For example, a digital mobile payments company may use a customer success dashboard to monitor both positive and negative metrics such as customer satisfaction and customer retention rate. This type of transparency promotes a goal and performance driven culture and incentivizes employees to act in a way that will improve a specific metric. It also prevents siloes from forming, making it easier for everyone to see how their actions can impact the overall company health.
Identifying Your Key Performance Indicators
Identifying key performance indicators, or KPIs, is an important part of creating a dashboard. Typically, these metrics reflect business processes and can be represented by tables or graphs.
KPIs help businesses understand how they’re performing and can address areas that need improvement. For example, if sales are slumping, identifying the problem can prompt new strategies to increase revenue.
It’s also important to involve stakeholders in the planning process of a dashboard to collect their specific requirements. Then, the resulting dashboard will better meet those needs and provide valuable information to users. This will help the dashboard stay useful and relevant over time. This is important because a dashboard may become a regular source of data for an organization, making it a long-term investment. The most successful dashboards find a balance between being custom-made for a purpose and being flexible enough to adapt as a business changes.
Choosing Your Visualizations
The most effective business dashboards are those that deliver a clear and concise data story. The best way to ensure this is by carefully planning what charts you will include based on the specific needs of your audience.
For example, a sales department might request a dashboard that shows a high-level overview of sales by region and product SKU to help them identify lagging areas and focus their efforts. A platform that allows for customization will be ideal in this case, so the business can provide each stakeholder group with a dashboard that aligns with their particular goals.
Additionally, make sure that all visualizations are easily readable by your audience. This can be accomplished by ensuring that all axes and measurement units are clearly labeled, as well as including comparison values on each chart. Following a similar strategy to that of journalists (who also happen to be the inspiration for many data visualizations), your dashboard should highlight its most critical insights first, in order to save users time and effort.
When choosing metrics to track, keep in mind that a dashboard is meant to distill complex data into an easily digestible source. As such, it should focus on key metrics that will help your business make critical decisions. If you find yourself adding metrics that aren’t relevant, consider reducing your number of metrics or leveraging a template to simplify your design.
Using dashboard software provides your team with an easy-to-use visual overview of all critical company information. You can quickly identify trends, compare data, drill down into information and generate automated reports based on your chosen criteria.
When all stakeholders can access objective, real-time data, it fosters transparency and accountability. For example, a sudden decrease in productivity may be flagged by a corporate dashboard and analyzed to determine the root cause of the issue. This enables you to respond swiftly with ad-hoc analysis and formulate strategies to improve your bottom line. Ultimately, this helps you achieve your business goals while boosting efficiency and profitability.