Dashboard Designing Essay

3897 Words May 18th, 2011 16 Pages
Metrics Dashboard Design
Designing Effective Metrics Management Dashboards

Designers of metrics management dashboards need to incorporate three areas of knowledge and expertise when building dashboards. They must understand the dashboard users’ needs and expectations both for metrics and for the presentation of those metrics; they must understand where and how to get the data for these metrics; and they must apply uniform standards to the design of dashboards and dashboard suites in order to make them ‘intuitive’ for the end-users. This paper outlines dashboard design best practices and design tips, and will help dashboard designers ensure that their projects meet with end-user approval. It concludes with a checklist of design
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Often the data required to provide this synthesis and these details is spread across a variety of databases technologies and even spreadsheets at different physical locations. It is, nonetheless, essential that all required data be retrieved. A dashboard that provides metrics based on partial information is of little value when a global view is needed.

Metrics Dashboard Design


Refresh the Data According to Users’ Needs Users need metrics that are up to date so they can act on current and probable future situations.

A good metrics management solution will be able to play a role in ensuring data quality by monitoring data sources and by automating data transformations.

The timeliness of a metric is as important as the metric data itself. Find out how current data must be for it to be valuable to users, and set the polling frequencies for the queries that retrieve the data accordingly. Metrics used to monitor hourly call levels to a help desk are worse than useless if data is gathered every Sunday at 6 a.m. Similarly, if sales personnel report sales once a week on Thursdays, there is little point in polling the database every hour for updates to this data.
Usability Design Best Practices
Users do not want to be surprised by the dashboard design. They need to be able focus on metrics and decisions.

A metrics management dashboard should function for the user in the same way that an

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