What Is a Business Intelligence Dashboard and Why Do I Need One?
Have you heard about business intelligence dashboards?
If you haven’t, then you could be missing out on an opportunity to use an excellent tool for your business. Find out more about what a business intelligence dashboard is and why you need one right now.
What Is a Business Intelligence Dashboard?
A Business Intelligence (BI) dashboard is a tool for data visualization which gathers and consolidates all relevant metrics and key performance indicators (KPI) of a business. By looking at the dashboard, you can get important insights right away that you can use for making data-driven business decisions.
It can also be used for:
• Setting performance goals
• Defining metrics
• Identifying problems proactively
The Two Types of Business Intelligence Dashboard
Business intelligence dashboards can be classified into two types:
• Analytical dashboard
• Operational dashboard
An analytical dashboard is designed mainly to help decision makers in establishing goals based on data that has been collected over a specific period of time. As the name suggests, an analytical dashboard can also help you understand why things happened.
An operational dashboard is used by managers for monitoring KPIs and metrics. As it displays current information, this kind of dashboard can be used for getting alerts and identifying issues as they happen.
Why Do You Need a Business Intelligence Dashboard?
So, why do you need a business intelligence dashboard and how can you use it for your business? Here are several reasons:
When you are using a business intelligence dashboard, you can make decisions based on facts and not on guesswork. The colorful interface lets you see clearly the data that can help you in making the right decisions.
Also, you get the information in real-time. You can react to issues as they happen.
Get the Most Out of Your Data
Data is one of the most valuable assets of your company. But like other assets, you can only get its full value if you know how to use it properly. In the past, leveraging data was costly and time-consuming.
With the help of a dashboard, all members of your organization can get insights from the data in order to do their jobs better in a fast and efficient manner. You can get the most out of your data quickly and efficiently.
You Can Consolidate Your Data
What do you do with all the business data that you have? Where do you keep all that information?
A problem which you might encounter if you do not have all your data consolidated in one place is you cannot access it easily when you need it.
With a business dashboard, you will have all that data summarized within one screen and can drill down into report for more detailed data. You can access this data easily without having to dig into your database. That can save you a great deal of time.
You Get an Objective View of Your Organization’s Performance
How do you know that your business or organization is on the right track? Anecdotal evidence is not enough. You need cold, hard facts. The best way to get that is through data on a dashboard.
Data displayed on a business intelligence dashboard is a quick and objective way of displaying the performance of your organization. The numbers will not lie.
Gives You a Bigger Picture
Your dashboard will give you a glimpse of all KPIs and metrics that you have decided to are important to run your business. It allows you to see the bigger picture in one glance since you can see consolidated data from multiple sources. Compare that to a common scenario of trying to manually connect data from several different tools.
See Problem Areas
For some, the best use of a dashboard is in revealing problem areas. Not only will you see current or even real-time data about current problems with your business, but you can use predictive analytics to anticipate possible problems ahead. That ability to see problem areas empowers you to take swift action to correct issues when you must.
Key Features of a Business Intelligence Dashboard
Here are several key features that your business intelligence dashboard should have:
You need to have 24/7 access to your data and the best way to achieve that is to use a dashboard that is mobile, and cloud-based. That will allow you to access it even when you are on the go. You can check it on multiple platforms and it will be easily readable, even when you are using a tablet or a mobile phone.
2. Easy Visualization
Another thing that is important in the dashboard that you use is its visualization features. It should be flexible and intuitive so users can interact with the dashboard to drill down into the details about the data. Overall, the dashboard should be easy to use, or you will not be able to get the most out of it.
3. Real-Time Data Feed
The best dashboards should be able to feed data in real time or at least close to that. This is important because depending on the speed of your business, you may want your decisions to be based on information as they are happening.
In today’s fast-paced world, data can become old in a matter of hours or even minutes in some cases.
Although automated publishing may not always be used with business intelligence dashboards and reports, you still need the capability to create automated publications which can be sent to specific users.
5. Automated Data Refresh
Your dashboard should have the capability to connect to various sources of data such as Google Analytics, Shopify, Salesforce, Netsuite, Facebook Ads, Google Ads and others. On top to connecting to those various sources, it should do an automated refresh to update the data at the right periods.
6. Can Be Accessed Across Different Platforms
Your company might be using different computing platforms. Ideally, your dashboard should be able to be accessed by various platforms like Windows, Linux or Mac.
In conclusion, there are a lot of other features that you need to look for when deciding which business intelligence dashboard you should use. For example, it would be best if you can get one that allows you to zoom in and out when viewing charts and tables. Collage Analytics can help you choose the best business intelligence tools based on how you are planning to use it.
Do not be left behind. Use a business intelligence dashboard now for your business and become a data-driven enterprise. Collage Analytics consultants can help you with your enterprise data strategy and help you use your data to grow your business. Contact us today for a FREE consultation!