Career Path Dashboard in Tableau

Creating simple dashboards with Tableau is very fast and easy. I’m trying to understand the full limits of more customized dashboards compared to what I would have done in the past with Xcelsius/SAP Dashboards or even Excel. Today I have finally recreated my career path dashboard on Tableau Public, and I admit that it was a bit tricky to build the 30 different parameters into the one skill chart on the bottom right.

tableau_career_path

Click the image above or the following link: http://public.tableausoftware.com/profile/#!/vizhome/CareerPath_0/CareerPath

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Simple Tableau Mobile Dashboard

Now that I’m working with Tableau on a regular basis at work, I’ve also decided to recreate my existing dashboard examples so I can better understand the exact differences (pros/cons) between Tableau and SAP Dashboards / Xcelsius. This first posting on the topic covers the simple mobile sales dashboard that I originally posted about here.

The main point of this exercise is to leverage design elements from PowerPoint to create a more polished looking dashboard on a mobile device. I experimented with the new transparency options in Tableau 8.1, but found that my dashboard would crash when trying to layer transparent sections over graphics in the dashboard. Trying an alternative approach, I used version 8.0 and just set the backgrounds of each section to match the image.

mobile_sales_dashboard
Click on the image to seeing the working Tableau Public version. Try it on your desktop and mobile devices!

I had to make a page for each KPI (budget, actual, variance) because putting them into a single table wouldn’t show correctly over the graphic bubbles. Other than that, it was much faster to build this dashboard in Tableau and the separate pages wasn’t much of an inconvenience. I was also able to use the x/y positioning and exact sizing of elements to make sure that they were all aligned correctly and easily.

The ‘sales rep’ quick filter at the top adjusts all of the numbers, and the entire dashboard is mobile ready by default… so I’m pretty happy with the outcome on this one!

Inovista Tutorial – Part 1 (The Basics)

I’ve had a number of people reach out in response to my teaser post about the capabilities of Inovista add-ons. Before I jump into things like the concept of sliding panels, we need to cover some of the basics.

If you are going to invest in the Inovista add-ons, I highly recommend that you get the full developer suite for $999. Remember, this is only required for the developers and not the end users, so it grants a lot of extra features without being a big deal if you have a couple hundred end users. Usually I recommend that organizations have at least 2 licenses because everyone needs a back-up. If you end up building a lot of mobile dashboards with Inovista, they have another option that allows you to package your own apps. I haven’t reached that point myself, but their mobile app reader is a great way to get started.

Here are some of the packages in the suite:

– Advanced Shapes
– Mobile Components
– iOS Components
– SVG / Image Controllers
– Inovista Mobile Charts
– Inovista Grids
– Inovista Microcharts
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Xcelsius Reborn vs. Visualization Best Practices?

Since I’m fresh off of the 2013 ASUG Developer Wars, I felt inspired to build another dashboard quickly. Plus I had hours to kill in the airport while waiting to return to the East Coast. I figured this was a great time to build another sample showcasing our upcoming add-on package and stand-alone dashboard reader.

I’ve spent a lot of time reviewing the entries Stephen Few’s recent dashboard competition. In particular, Jason Lockwood’s winning dashboard entry, so I used that as inspiration for this example.

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Balanced Scorecard on Mobile

Recently I rebuilt my Balanced Scorecard in the mobile version of SAP Dashboards (Xcelsius). While I learned a great deal from this exercise, the true lesson is that you should be designing for mobile first! While you can export to both desktop and mobile with the same file, most ‘desktop’ dashboards are over-complicated and overcrowded. Trying to convert those files to mobile will impact both usability and performance.

bsc_mobile_screen1
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