Does My Business Need a Dashboard?

Business dashboard and reporting software can be an enormous investment. Some companies prefer to build their own business intelligence dashboards from scratch, while others will partner or subscribe with a BI provider to obtain the solutions they seek.

Whether you build or buy, it’s crucial to answer this question first: “Does my business need a dashboard?”

To help determine if your business needs dashboard and reporting tools, or if you can get by without them for the time being, take a look at the following common signs. If you’re business aligns with any of these symptoms, you might want to consider investing in strategic dashboards sooner rather than later.

You sense your company could be improving, but you have no idea how to tell for sure.

You know that data can help your business, but like many executives and decision makers you don’t know exactly what types of data you should be collecting, let alone how to make meaningful decisions using the data. From ticket numbers and sales figures to customer and employee metrics, data is all around you—but what do you do with it?

You’re monitoring and gathering data, but nothing beyond that.

Perhaps you’ve been collecting data you think is meaningful, but have yet to act on any of it. Many businesses collect data because they know they should, but they’re unsure about how they can leverage it to their advantage.

You’re wasting valuable time trying to create tools to help you leverage data.

Maybe you realize the right business intelligence software can benefit your organization, but you’ve been resisting the urge to adopt new software for fear of steep subscription plans and long, ambiguous contracts. Having spent so much time researching and vetting a good solution, you’ve decided to create your own DIY dashboard solution using Excel spreadsheets. Unfortunately, the days (or weeks) it takes to accomplish your DIY reporting can be built by a professional dashboard app in minutes.

Your current solution isn’t giving you the ROI you need.

Did you buy executive dashboard software to achieve your BI goals, only to discover that you struggle even more with it than without? While there are many amazing BI tools out there, most of them require a sophisticated level of IT expertise and proficiency just to get the most basic BI work accomplished. This results in additional training and resources many companies can’t afford.

Your competitors are using a business dashboard.

At the end of the day, your business is designed to make money, but you can’t do that if your competition is consistently one step ahead of you. Are you losing customers or new deals because your competitors can offer faster times to close (TTCs) on service tickets? Perhaps they’ve integrated mobile BI tools into their customer meetings, enticing clients with exciting numbers and graphs.

Failing to adopt the strategies of your rivals could ultimately lead to controlling a much smaller market share.

A business dashboard is a powerful tool—if you need it

If any of the signs above ring true, it might be time to adopt BI software into your organization. The benefits that come with most business dashboard and reporting applications will alleviate the issues covered in this article. The right data reporting solution can take you beyond these challenges and straight into the improvement process.

For instance, partnering with a good data reporting software vendor means you’ll have access to experienced developers and training workshops, thereby ensuring you and your team will know how to properly use the software to your best advantage.

The right data reporting solution can help you stay informed, relevant, competitive and alive.

But investing in BI software when you don’t necessarily need it has its risks as well. For starters, it can be expensive to maintain. If your team isn’t properly trained, then the new software you decided to integrate will go to waste. Right now you might be in a position when data and analytical insights won’t help you strategically. That’s okay. You can always investigate BI software at a later time when you think you’ll get the most out of it.

Next up: Benefits and Challenges of Dashboards

A business dashboard is immensely effective at organizing and presenting data in a way that’s easy to digest and consolidate. However, BI software comes with its own set of obstacles and challenges that need to be overcome in order to get the most out of it. In this article, we look at the unique benefits dashboard and reporting applications provide businesses, as well as the difficulties they present.

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