Dashboards are the most common access point for organizations using analytics. They make decision-making faster and easier while enabling a wide variety of business users to interpret and interact with them, not just power analysts. Users are immediately able to see whether targets are being met, understand performance discrepancies, identify opportunities and threats, and drill-down on issues that require further analysis. While previous BI implementations meant extensive development and limited flexibility, modern dashboards enable you to take advantage of your data on a more immediate and widespread scale.
Better Access and Flexible Deployments
Data warehousing platforms now support broader data sources, more complex analytics, and more flexible delivery of information. Even though it is all dependent on the platform, businesses can stream real-time data, access information in-memory, and take advantage of more storage for less. All of this is key for dashboard delivery. Aside from market demands and the need to access information constantly, user choice means that information can be accessed and stored anywhere, making BI deployments more flexible and data easier to interact with.
Visibility into Operations
The importance of identifying the data requirements and looking at which data sources need to be joined to get a broader view of the organization cannot be overstated. Without this, companies may be flying blind. An incomplete view of information will provide an incomplete view into operations and lead to less than accurate visibility and insight. With a centralized data access point, information can be delivered in a way that is easy to digest and interact with. People who may not have had access to information previously can now interact with data (with drill-downs and drill-throughs) in a secure environment to uncover insights and work more efficiently. .
Planning and Forecasting Capabilities
Using dashboards to understand real-time operations to support better decision-making may seem obvious, but few organizations use dashboards well to plan for the future. Planning requires access to easily dissected information that is not available unless data is consolidated and connections can be identified. And although many forms of analytics and BI delivery methods can accomplish this, dashboards appear to be the most effective way of doing so on a regular basis. Organizations often use spreadsheets to create forecasting models with only high-level information, but this can be problematic as users make changes and there are multiple versions floating around. It can also be difficult to digest large tables of information, so dashboards can help visualize the data and make it easier to understand.
At the end of the day, dashboards should help you manage performance. Marketing, sales, finance, and customer service are just some of the areas that require accurate performance management. For example, call center managers can use real-time data to create a KPI dashboard that tracks whether their teams are hitting targets and identifies potential issues as they occur, creating a proactive work environment. Dashboards can also help management evaluate performance over time, identify discrepancies, and take advantage of opportunities. When looking at employee performance specifically, understanding who outperforms and under what conditions can help identify ways to motivate staff to keep performance levels high. Learn how CarePartners Health uses dashboards to improve performance by providing users with actionable analytics.
Dashboards are a core component of any business intelligence strategy. They are flexible, can be accessed anywhere, and offer a lot of interactivity for end users, all of which drive adoption. And since dashboards are generally less expensive to deploy than broader BI frameworks, they offer strong ROI potential for your business. It’s time for you to create relevant and compelling dashboards so your users can make more informed decisions – your competitors already have!