What is an Excel Dashboard?
A dashboard is a visual interface that provides at-a-glance views into key measures relevant to a particular objective or business process. Dashboard reports allow users to get high-level overview of the business and help them make quick decisions. Dashboards have three main attributes.
- Dashboards are typically graphical in nature, providing visualizations that help focus attention on key trends, comparisons, and exceptions.
- Dashboards often display only data that are relevant to the goal of the dashboard.
- Because dashboards are designed with a specific purpose or goal, they inherently contain predefined conclusions that relieve the end user from performing his own analysis.
You can create dashboards using a lot of different tools. Microsoft Excel is an excellent choice for creating and distributing dashboards due its ease of use and universal availability.
Some Key Points when creating a dashboard
- Establish the audience and purpose for the dashboard.
- Don’t be afraid to clarify the initial request and discuss what is really being asked for.
- Discuss the purpose of the dashboard and the triggers that caused them to ask for a dashboard in the first place.
Outline the measures for the dashboard
- Most dashboards are designed around a set of measures, or key performance indicators (KPIs).
- The measures used on a dashboard should absolutely support the initial purpose of that dashboard.
- Create a Mock-up of the dashboard layout.
Catalogue the required data sources
- Do you have access to the necessary data sources?
- How often are those data sources refreshed?
- Who owns and/or maintains those data sources?
- What are the processes to get the data from the resources?
- Does the data even exist?
Define the dimensions and filters for the dashboard
In the context of reporting, a dimension is a data category used to organize business data.
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