Building Dashboards: A Four-Step Process

Dashboard Building Timeline

Dashboard building is an essential practice in today’s data-driven world. It involves a series of steps, each crucial for creating a final product that meets business requirements and provides a platform for informed decision-making. This blog post aims to walk you through the timeline of dashboard building in four critical steps: intake and project kickoff, requirements gathering, design and build, and implementation.

    1. Intake and Project Kickoff

The journey begins with the intake process and project kickoff. This is the initial stage where we identify and establish stakeholders, engage with the working team, and understand interdependencies. These stakeholders are often a blend of business users, data analysts, project managers, and executives, all of whom have unique insights and perspectives about what the dashboard should achieve.

As part of the kickoff, we build a high-level plan or roadmap that outlines the project’s expected course. It sketches the broad timeline, lists critical tasks, and maps out the sequence of events that the team needs to follow. The roadmap ensures all team members understand the project scope, goals, and their individual roles.

    1. Requirements Gathering

The next step is requirements gathering. This phase is crucial to understanding what the dashboard needs to achieve and how it should be designed. It involves internal design creation, where initial design concepts are created based on the project objectives and requirements.

The team conducts joint reviews of the requirements and the design prototype to ensure alignment between what is needed and what is being created. During these reviews, project milestone dates are assigned for tracking progress.

The stakeholder engagement continues during this phase, with stakeholders being kept abreast of project milestones and progress. This communication helps manage expectations, solicit feedback, and maintain alignment with the original project objectives.

    1. Design and Build

Once the requirements are finalized, the project moves to the design and build phase. Here, the team works on the functionality requirements of the dashboard, translating the business requirements into tangible features and capabilities.

Functionality reviews are conducted, ensuring that each feature meets the business needs. Once the functionality is confirmed, the stakeholders provide their design signoff, which indicates that the project can progress to the next step.

Coding then takes place, bringing the dashboard to life, followed by Quality Assurance Testing (QAT). The QAT ensures that all features work as they should and that the dashboard is bug-free. Following this, a User Acceptance Testing (UAT) is done, where a subset of end-users test the dashboard to verify that it meets their expectations.

    1. Implementation

The final phase is implementation. Here, the team develops a change management plan to address how the dashboard’s introduction will impact the business and how this change will be managed.

Once the plan is in place, a soft launch is conducted, which involves rolling out the dashboard to a small group of users. This allows any last-minute issues to be caught and addressed before the full rollout.

After a successful soft launch, the dashboard undergoes an extended rollout where it is made available to all intended users. Training sessions, user manuals, and support are provided to help users understand how to effectively use the new dashboard.

Conclusion

Building a dashboard is a structured process involving planning, design, development, and implementation stages. Each phase requires meticulous execution and strong collaboration among stakeholders, developers, and end-users. This ensures that the final dashboard meets the business needs, is user-friendly, and ultimately aids in data-driven decision-making.

At Anyon Consulting, we specialize in helping businesses navigate this complex process. Our team of experts brings extensive experience in all aspects of dashboard building, from project kickoff to implementation. We provide guidance and hands-on support, ensuring a smooth and efficient dashboard development process that aligns with your business objectives. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your organization excel in data visualization and informed decision-making.

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