A dashboard is like a crystal ball that lets you see your organisation’s overall performance, and it comes with many benefits. It helps you make better decisions, figure out what works and what doesn't, and spot emerging trends. It can also reveal key insights that may otherwise have been missed, enabling you to find efficiencies, uncover new opportunities and gain the competitive edge.
Metrics prompt action. And that’s why dashboards work so effectively. The analytics revealed by your dashboard can help you set clear goals for your business. They enable you to measure and monitor progress with ease, making instant tweaks and changes to your plans in response to the insights your data reveals.
Dashboards are also highly customisable, so can be adapted to any size organisation in any sector. They can be purpose-built to track whatever performance metrics matter most to you, and present them in eye-catching charts and graphs. And, with the option to build-in real-time updates and alerts, you'll always have your finger on the pulse of your business.
The biggest benefit of a dashboard is its simplicity. It’s a clean, at-a-glance, visual representation of key performance indicators (KPIs) and other important data, presented in a way that's easy to understand. The majority of businesses using and commissioning dashboards are looking for 3 key drivers:
1. Improved decision making
Dashboards provide a snapshot of KPIs in a visually engaging way, allowing decision makers to quickly identify potential problems or opportunities and make decisions based on the data.
2. Enhanced efficiency
Dashboards give users the ability to quickly access and analyse data from multiple sources, saving time and improving efficiency.
3. Improved collaboration
Dashboards allow teams to easily share data and insights across departments and even organisations, leading to improved collaboration and better decisions.
Choosing the right type of dashboard will depend on your specific needs and goals. Whether you’re looking to gain deeper insights into your business, monitor day-to-day operations, provide information to customers, or create a comprehensive view of business performance, there is a dashboard type that can help you achieve your objectives.
1. Analytical dashboards
Analytical dashboards are used to investigate trends or deeper insights to understand what happened in the business, and what changes you should make in the future. These dashboards provide users with the ability to drill down into specific metrics and data sets to uncover insights and trends.
Analytical dashboards typically include features such as charts, graphs, and tables, allowing users to visualise the data in a meaningful way. They may also include interactive features such as filters and sort options, allowing users to manipulate the data to suit their needs.
2. Strategic dashboards
Strategic dashboards focus on company top-level KPIs. These dashboards display business performance over set time frames: past month, quarter, or year. They provide users with a high-level overview of business performance, allowing them to quickly identify areas of concern or opportunity.
Strategic dashboards typically include features such as performance indicators, scorecards, and trends. They may also include data from multiple sources, providing users with a comprehensive view of business performance.
3. Operational dashboards
Operational dashboards are used for employee awareness tracking the day-to-day operations of each team in real-time. They help to catch problems once they occur. These dashboards provide users with real-time updates on operational performance, allowing them to quickly identify issues and take corrective action.
Operational dashboards typically include features such as heat maps, real-time charts, and alerts. They may also include features such as drill-down capabilities, allowing users to investigate issues in more detail.
4. Customer-facing dashboards
Customer-facing dashboards are designed to display information and data to customers or external stakeholders. They provide users with a user-friendly interface to access information about their accounts, products or services. These dashboards are typically used in industries such as finance, healthcare and transportation.
Customer-facing dashboards are designed to be user-friendly and easy to navigate, with a focus on providing the customer with the information they need in a clear and concise way. They may include features such as real-time updates, customisable views, and interactive charts and graphs.
5. Hybrid dashboards
Hybrid dashboards combine elements of multiple dashboard types, providing users with a comprehensive view of business performance. These dashboards are highly customisable, allowing developers to design them to meet the needs of their users.
If you’re ready to begin planning and designing your dashboard, follow these 5 principles to ensure yours is both functional and user-friendly:
1. Define your goals: Start by defining the purpose and goals of your dashboard. Knowing what you want to achieve will help you make better decisions when designing the dashboard.
2. Keep it simple: Avoid overcomplicating the dashboard by presenting too much information at once. Focus on the most important metrics and make sure the data is presented in a clear and concise way.
3. Use visuals: Incorporate visual tools such as charts and graphs to help users quickly understand the story the data is telling.
4. Make it interactive: Allow users to interact with the dashboard by filtering and sorting data to drill down into specific metrics.
5. Monitor performance: Make sure you regularly monitor the performance of your dashboard to ensure it is delivering the expected results.
Dashboards have the ability to provide a wealth of benefits to organisations of all sizes and in all industries. And, with the rise of big data and the Internet of Things, dashboards are becoming ever more popular as tools for both businesses and customers. When designed in the right way, they can help companies gain valuable insights into their performance, empower users and drive success - or even turn a business around.
If you're considering building a dashboard for your business, it’s worth exploring your ideas with a professional. The Wildfish team has successfully developed dashboards for different sizes and types of organisations across a wide range of different industries. Wildfish is the creator of Django-Dashboards, a leading dashboard building tool.
Contact Wildfish here to book a call with one of our expert developers. email@example.com
Here at Wildfish, we’ve been working away on django-dashboards to support some of our clients. The aim was to build a package for quickly building data-driven dashboards in a “django like” way, closely coupling with the ORM and other key features of Django and minimising the frontend development required to build a new dashboard. The aim of this post is to provide a quick intro to django-dashboards and how to get started.