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Dashboard development and data visualization tools for effective BI

Learn about business intelligence dashboard design best practices and data visualization trends in this Essential Guide covering the use of data visualization tools in the age of big data.


As the use of business intelligence and advanced analytics technologies proliferates in more companies and plays a bigger and bigger role in business success, deployments of data visualization software and tools are also expanding -- and evolving. BI and IT teams increasingly are getting requests from business users for data visualization capabilities, often delivered through user-friendly BI dashboards, to help meet business intelligence objectives. Furthermore, the growing adoption of big data applications increases the complexity of business data analytics, including the types of visualizations that data scientists and other users are looking to run. Used effectively, new data visualization tools and well-thought-out dashboard designs help streamline the visual presentation of large, complex sets of data for better business decision making.

Yet the wide array of available features and options can be overwhelming. Business intelligence managers and consultants say that dashboard designers must fight the temptation to create glitzy dashboards with bells and whistles galore and instead focus on what business users most need. In addition, a variety of vendors have advanced data visualization tools on the market. Understanding the different capabilities they support and identifying the appropriate tools for an organization's specific BI program needs are crucial steps for companies looking to effectively and meaningfully represent large sets of data without weighing down BI and IT staffers with development and end-user support tasks.

To help analytics and BI project teams navigate the challenges, this guide offers expert insight and advice on dashboard development and data visualization trends, including the application of data visualization tools in big data environments.

1Streamlined dashboard design-

Flash vs. function in dashboard design and development

While sleek looks are appealing, BI dashboard users need to be able to quickly access useful business data. The stories and tips in this section explore ways to concentrate on the functional aspects of dashboard development, tempting as it may be to make use of flashy graphics and animations.


Avoid data overload for successful dashboard design

Experts recommend applying clarity and simplicity to stay on the path to success in dashboard design. Continue Reading


Business intelligence dashboard designs, without the clutter

Get tips on designing BI dashboards that display the most useful information for users and downplay unnecessary data. Continue Reading


Dashboard development for a mobile world

With the proliferation of mobile devices comes the need for dashboards that work well on tablets and smartphones. Continue Reading


BI teams must rise to the challenge on dashboard projects

With business dashboards part of the BI landscape in most organizations, BI teams must maximize the effective use of dashboard tools. Continue Reading


Focus on utility, not glitz, for good dashboard design

Avoid the temptation to emphasize glitzy graphics and animations in dashboards and focus on what users need for effective data analysis. Continue Reading

2Visualizing big data-

Data visualization tools evolve with big data

Data visualization in the world of big data is challenging, yet increasingly necessary. And, in many cases, the use of data visualization tools must change to accommodate the needs of big data. In the articles in this section, experts offer fresh ideas on combining data visualization and big data analytics.


Achieving big data analytics success with data visualization tools

Gain insight into the potential value of data visualization capabilities in big data analytics applications. Continue Reading


Data visualization tools offer more capabilities -- and challenges

Data visualization tools are now advanced technologies that support complex operations, including big data applications. But those capabilities come with more challenges. Continue Reading


Users feel sense of ownership when they can visualize big data

A panel of technologists discusses the importance of visualizing big data, which often means attempting to tangibly represent abstractions. Continue Reading


Big data propels evolution of data visualization tools

Learn how the world of data visualization and data visualization tools is changing to meet the needs of big data. Continue Reading


The importance of visualization tools for big data analytics

In an interview, author Tom Davenport discusses quantitative data visualization as it applies to big data and data visualization tools. Continue Reading

3Trends in data visualization-

News and trends in dashboards and data visualization

The expanded use and growing complexity of business intelligence is creating demands from business users for improved dashboards, scorecards and data visualization capabilities. The news and trend stories in this section discuss the growing importance of dashboard and data visualization technologies that can help meet the needs of BI users and the objectives of BI programs.


Tips on deploying and managing location intelligence tools

Well-implemented location intelligence systems can deliver valuable business insights, including mapping and other visual representations of data. Continue Reading


Data visualization tool purchases increase due to IT bottlenecks

Numerous companies investing in data visualization software cite bottlenecks in their IT departments as the primary reason. Continue Reading


Effective data visualization starts with sound data management

Deploying data visualization tools is only one piece of the visualization process; a lot of data management legwork is also required. Continue Reading


New views on BI dashboards and scorecards

As business intelligence becomes more complicated, BI dashboards and scorecards must keep up to meet changing needs, analyst Cindi Howson says. Continue Reading


As data visualization expands, internal fears may increase

Data visualization can help broaden the use of BI data in companies. But that might spark concerns from some quarters about a loss of control over data. Continue Reading


Location intelligence takes its place in BI and visualization apps

Location-based data has a potential role to play in various business intelligence functions, including data visualization. Continue Reading


Advanced data visualizations becoming crucial in BI programs

A Forrester Research report highlights the need for advanced data visualizations and details numerous vendors and their product offerings. Continue Reading


Data visualization software helps deter copper thieves

Advanced data visualization, geospatial data and visual analytics are helping a Virginia-based energy company fight back against thefts of copper wire. Continue Reading


Dashboards and data visualization terms, defined

Learn or review the definitions of terms related to data visualization in this glossary.

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