The Dashboard Squint Test

Before we go and review the 2008 Excel Dashboard Competition Winners I have to make you familiar with  the Dashboard Squint Test.

Software usability experts and web designer use a quite effective way to assess the organization of a web page or a user interface, the so called Squint Test. You squint your eyes and make an assessment on the overall layout, of elements that stand out, the visual balance and other characteristics of an effective user interface.

SquintTestScreen0001

 
This test can be easily extended and applied to dashboards. Squint your eyes and assess the overall layout.

SquintTestScreen0002


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Excel Dashboard and Visualization Boot Camp

Here the announcement of the Excel Dashboard Boot Camp hosted by the two experts Jon Peltier and Mike Alexander:

Microsoft MVPs Jon Peltier (Peltier Technical Services) and Mike Alexander (DataPig Technologies) are joining together to bring you our first annual Excel Dashboard and Visualization Boot Camp!

Continue reading “Excel Dashboard and Visualization Boot Camp”

2008 Excel Dashboard Competition Winners

After much deliberation and debate, we are pleased to announce the winners of the 2008 Excel Dashboard Competition. We were impressed by many of the entries, and thanks to all of you who entered. It’s good to see MicroCharts being put to effective use, and adding value in such a variety of business scenarios and sectors. We had entrants from a broad range of industries including Banking, Insurance, Healthcare, Manufacturing, Oil and Gas and Pharmaceuticals.

The winners are:

1) Wade Stokes – Bank Dashboard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Displaying many disparate Banking Key Performance Indicators, and designed as the basis for the Management review of business performance, it truly achieves More Information per Pixel.

2) Jim Uden – Outpatient Surgery Center Dashboard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Developed for Meridian Surgical Partners, as a one page snapshot for the review and presentation of partnership level business operations and trends.  Jim also includes probably the best associated description of dashboard content and the thought processes involved which we’ve seen.

3) Hitesh Patel – Pharmaceutical Sales Dashboard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Developed by Hitesh Patel and Mike Askew of Data Intelligence, for Bristol Myers Squibb. A key report for the Regional Sales Managers, containing the information required to run the business in terms of cash, growth, share, and competitive performance.

Congratulations to all 3 of our winners. Have a look at our competition page for screenshots and some background on the winning entries. Over the next few weeks we’ll be analyzing the entries in more depth at http://blog.xlcubed.com. We’ll overview each, cover some of the techniques used, and hopefully suggest some further improvements.

Extended Deadline of Excel Dashboard Competition

We will be extending the deadline of our Excel Dashboard Competition by two weeks to 15 June. So you still have a chance of winning the iPhone or the InfoVis workshop.

FlowingData came up with the nice idea of building a visual display or the hundreds of data sets available in the U.S. Census 2008 Statistical Abstract.

I loaded one of the sheets (Patents and Trademarks.XLS) into Excel, enriched
it with MicroCharts, added a detail chart and published it to the Web.

 

 

More Information per Pixel

This blog is about most widely used BI tool in the world, Microsoft Excel!

Our mission is to connect business users to data such that an average Excel user can build his budgeting application, enterprise dashboard or data warehouse reporting with Excel. Such a solution can span from a simple Excel reporting that pulls data from a sheet database using lookup functions to a full fledged enterprise dashboard that sources data from an OLAP cube & can be browsed interactively in the web.

When it comes to dashboard visualization, we are not of the whistles, bells and gauges school of visualization, we advocate best practice in data visualization and effective dashboard charts like sparklines and bullet graphs.

If somebody tells you that you have to leave Excel, buy an expensive dashboard product, invest a lot in IT tools, IT administration, learn SQL and MDX to build an effective dashboard, don’t believe them.

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