Five mistakes your business dashboard is already makingmistake #1: metrics that don't make senseYour audience will be far less familiar with your dashboard's metrics than you, the dashboard designer. Though terms like "conversion rate" or "active pipeline" may seem obvious to you, they might not be so apparent to a your broader audience. Your business dashboard must use metrics that your audience understands.

mistake #2: flashy effects instead of effective communicationIronically, sometimes the latest features in your dashboard software actually make your business dashboard harder to read. Speedometer-like visuals, clever graphics, and gratuitous animation get in the way of your main objective: to rapidly and easily inform your audience.

mistake #3: poorly designed graphs and chartsEven the most beautiful data can quickly become incomprehensible when presented poorly. Things like 3D graphs and pie charts with too many colors make a business dashboard impossible to read. Tableau's software uses the latest research in visual perception, compensating for inherent limitations in our visual perception to present data as accurately as possible.

mistake #4: excessive complexityIt's easy to slip to the bottom of IT's priority list. Overly complex dashboard software or dashboard design can extend your project's finish date by months or even years. Choose a dashboard tool that can get you up and running quickly, then start building prototypes so you can test and refine.

mistake #5: failing to keep the dashboard up to dateA business dashboard is only as useful as its data is relevant. And while a well-designed dashboard is simple and quick to understand, it takes on-going resources to maintain it and keep its data up to date.

A business dashboard should:

  • Use metrics that matter
  • Be easy to read
  • Allow its audience to interact with it
  • Reflect current data
  • Be easily shared and distributed



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