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Importance of Dashboards in Business Intelligence and Analytics

An article about what business dashboards are , how important it is in business and how they are used to make more informed business decisions.
Importance of Dashboards in Business Intelligence and Analytics

A business dashboard is an information management tool that tracks and simplifies complex data sets and leverages data visualizations, allowing users to gain quick insight into current performance. It’s also commonly known as a business intelligence dashboard or BI dashboard.

A business intelligence dashboard displays proprietary company information on a single screen after converting it into a data visualization. Data visualizations include business analytics metrics along with key performance indicators (KPIs).

How Dashboards Helps in Businesses

Most businesses use multiple services to track KPIs and metrics, which takes up time and resources to properly monitor and analyze. Dashboards use raw data from these sources, spreadsheets and databases to create tables, line charts, bar charts and gauges in a central dashboard that users can look at and immediately understand the key metrics they are looking for. Data dashboards simplify end of month reporting by allowing users to communicate information at any time without hours of preparation and analyzing.

1.Monitor Multiple KPIs and Metrics at Once:Changes to any aspect of a business, whether it be in marketing, sales, support, or finance, has an impact on the business as a whole.Whether your businesses data is stored on a web service, attachment or API, a dashboard pulls this information and allows you to monitor all your data in one central location. Additionally, dashboards are capable of correlate data from different sources in a single visualization if the user so chooses. By monitoring multiple KPIs and metrics on one central dashboard, users can make adjustments to their business practices in real time.

2.Easy to Read:Dashboards display KPIs and metrics using visualizations like tables, line charts, bar charts and gauges. Effective dashboard design utilizes colors, symbols and visualizations to highlight important data points .This allows users to quickly scan a dashboard and get the information they need. Data dashboards are useful because they visualize information in a way that is accessible to everyone.

3.Cloud Accessibility:A dashboard keeps every member of a business on the same page. Users can share dashboards in real-time and periodically. Dashboards bring a business's data to the cloud, making key metrics and KPIs accessible to your entire time on desktop, mobile and tablet. There are a number of ways to share data dashboards: on wallboard tv's, email reports, printable reports or direct access. Data dashboards are becoming increasingly common because they allow for virtual work environments and make it easier for teams to collaborate.

4.Saves time : Business dashboards save users time because they aggregate data from multiple sources and reveal the most important KPIs. Without dashboards, organizations have to manually compile data from multiple sources and aggregate the data themselves. The manual approach requires more resources than an automated dashboard and increases the chance of human error. Automation frees valuable time to perform more detailed analyses and improves employee satisfaction.

5.Better Decision-Making:The biggest benefit of a business dashboard is better decision-making. It allows users to look at summaries of aggregated data to make informed business decisions. Not only is data easier to consume, but it can be analyzed faster.

6.Improved Goal-Setting: Organizations can make more data-driven decisions with goal-setting because the right data can be delivered at the right time. This leads to more accurate benchmarks and actionable goals at every level of the organization. Executives can see how the business is performing in real-time throughout the quarter and can make tactical pivots if they notice an objective isn’t working. With new information, goals and expectations can be adjusted as needed. When an organization’s data is visible throughout a company, KPIs can be aligned to business goals to improve business processes.

How do Dashboards work?

Everyone uses data dashboards differently. Not all business dashboards serve the same purpose, which is why it’s important users understand what KPIs to track and why. The answers is depend on the following questions:

  • What kinds of business questions do dashboards answer?
  • What type of data are tracked on dashboards?
  • How are dashboards interactive?

Dashboards are created by Business Questions

The best data dashboards answers the important questions about your business. Unlike advanced business intelligence tools, dashboards are designed for quick analysis and informational awareness. The most common approach to designing a business dashboard is to build it using a question-answer format.

Dashboards focus on presenting operational and analytical data

The business questions a dashboard answers depends on industry, department, process and position. Analytical dashboards are typically designed to help decision makers, executives and senior leaders, establish targets, set goals and understand what and why something happened with the same information they can use to implement appropriate changes. An analytical dashboard does this based on insights from data collected over a period of time determined by the user (i.e. last month, quarter or year).

Dashboards present interactive data visualizations

Data is visualized on a dashboard as tables, line charts, bar charts and gauges so that users can track the health of their business against benchmarks and goals. Data dashboards surface the necessary data to understand, monitor and improve your business through visual representations. Depending on how you decide to design your dashboard, even straightforward numerical data can be visually informative by utilizing intuitive symbols.

How are data dashboards used in business intelligence and analytics

Dashboards are a data visualization tool that allow all users to understand the analytics that matter to their business, department or project. Even for non-technical users, dashboards allow them to participate and understand the analytics process by compiling data and visualizing trends and occurrences. A dashboard is a business intelligence tool used to display data visualizations in a way that is immediately understood.

Dashboard Examples

Whether you are looking to track digital marketing performance, SEO traffic, or your social media growth, having measurable marketing metrics and KPIs set up can help your business reach targets month-over-month.

Marketing departments operate across multiple channels. From social media, to email marketing, to lead generation, your digital marketing strategy will include a number of activities. With such a wide variety of channels being used, it’s important for marketing teams to actively track progress and performance in real-time with the right digital marketing KPIs.

Sales Dashboards

In today's ultra competitive business ecosystem, only the strong survive. In order to keep your sales team on top of their game, you need to cultivate a data-driven culture by sharing the right performance indicators and business metrics with your team.