Dashboards Are Dead

Tarun Manrai
3 min readMay 21, 2020

Information dashboards are still very crucial for businesses of all sizes and I don’t see that changing in the foreseeable future. Dashboards aren’t going anywhere. Dashboards are great, and they will always have a place in the world of analytics and BI. That being said, for every power user who lives in their dashboards and loves them, speaks the language of data, and can’t imagine life without them, there are countless other business users who could get immense value out of insights from their data and will never experience them, because dashboards aren’t for them.

The world of analytics and data is changing. Not every user who could benefit from insights is going to become a dashboard jockey and BI expert. And now they don’t have to! The ability to leave dashboards behind and create data experiences is putting more insights into the hands of more users than ever before. Embedding, customizing, and integrating those analytics widgets into other business apps is flipping the script: users don’t come to the data, the data comes to them.

After a dashboard had gone live, we were immediately flooded with requests for new views, filters, fields, pages, everything. It was clear that the dashboards were not answering everyone’s questions, which was either a failure of the dashboard design step, or a failure in other tools to provide the answers people needed.

As quickly as the dashboard hype arrived, it began to wane. People started disparaging dashboards as wrong, and blatantly ignoring them. Many saw them as a threat to their jobs and if they saw numbers they didn’t expect, chalked it up to bad data. We had a serious trust problem, and dashboards offered little opportunity to assuage their concerns.

Dashboards have done a huge amount for data empowerment but they are certainly not the optimal interface for data collaboration and reporting.

Data notebooks, like Jupyter, have become very popular over the last few years in the data science field. The process-oriented nature has proven superior to traditional scripting for doing data analysis and data science.

Fundamentally, notebooks offer the opportunity

· for everyone to trust the process

· to have the power and flexibility to answer any question

· a way to collaborate on, present, and share these decisions with a wider audience.

These are the sign that companies are willing to move past highly crafted dashboards to realize the benefits of notebooks.

Analytics and BI companies already know that giving users custom-tailored analytics widgets and apps and embeddable utilities is the way of the future. Here’s a peek at some market approaches that are being developed right now:

One direction is to allow users to create extensions that integrate visualizations, writebacks, advanced and predictive analytics. This is a step towards combining user actions and insights, but doesn’t allow for portable insights that can live anywhere or be embedded into other applications.

Another direction is to enable Admins to integrate predefined actions from a list of third-party services that are already integrated with other BI tools. In some cases, there may be a limited number of applications that can be integrated with a single predefined command, severely limiting user choice and customization.

Some approaches include infographic tools that allow customers to create visually insightful communication materials (charts, graphs, text, tables, etc) and automate delivery to large audiences. However, this approach doesn’t allow users to take actions alongside the data/insights.

Wrapping up

Analytics and BI companies like Sisense will continue focusing efforts on giving users customizable, highly-portable analytics widgets that can go anywhere to help users get the insights they need to make a difference in their workflows. AI elements integrated into analytics platforms will also make it easier for non-technical users to navigate these systems and extract and share insights that they never could have come up with on their own. The future of analytics and BI will take many forms, all of them bringing insights and data to humans with much less heavy lifting

Read More… http://entradasoft.com/blogs/

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