Should a dashboard provide quick answers or prompt for more questions?

A recent article at Joining Dots compares traditional KPI displays (value, colored indicator, trend arrow) to spark lines and bullet graphs. The auther has a point when he says:

The irony is, dashboards that provide quick answers are largely redundant any way. Quick answers are answers you already know and just want validated.

As suggested in the article, a sparkline is fairly easy to build. Should you like to experiment with bullet graphs, however, ExcelUser has a great tutorial. You may also want to download and try an add-in such as MicroCharts 1.0 which does sparklines, bullet graphs and more.

The only complaint I have about MicroCharts is that it interacts in some strange ways with other add-ins such as XLCubed – which I use daily. Other than that, it looks very nicely implemented.

One thought on “Should a dashboard provide quick answers or prompt for more questions?

  1. Pingback: XLCubed acquires BonaVista Systems, publisher of MicroCharts « Stéphane-Robert Langer

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