Academy

Join the Intrafocus Academy

If you like our free strategy resources then join the Intrafocus Academy for additional material

Strategy Workshop

A three-session workshop based on the Intrafocus Strategic Planning Process (SPP)

Balanced Scorecard Certification

A five-day master class and certificate as a Balanced Scorecard Professional

Strategic Plan Audit/Review

Let us take a look at your strategic plan to check it contains all the elements needed in a good plan

Resources

Strategy & KPI Resources

A library of resources for anyone interested in strategic planning and KPI management

Strategic Planning Process (SPP)

Our next generation Strategic Planning Process based on the Balanced Scorecard Methodology

Blog - Intrafocus Insight

New articles published every two weeks, join our mailing list and keep up

Our Customers

Don’t take our word for it, see what the Intrafocus customers have to say.

Software

Spider Impact KPI Software

Intrafocus is the only EMEA authorised reseller of Spider Impact® from Spider Strategies®.

Spider Impact - Video Guides

From getting started all the way through to integrating into back-end systems.

Spider Impact - Documentation

Everything you need to know to set up Spider Impact, configure and import data

My5 KPIs - On your PC, Mac & Phone

Keep your key performance indicators to hand with the My5 KPIs universal application

Contact and Help Desk

If you have any questions or need some help or guidance, you can contact us at any time.

Effective use of Dashboards

We recently received an e-mail promoting a blog entry from the Measureology Blog entitled “Dashboard Tools Commit the 6 Deadly Design Sins”.  The subject matter is one close to our hearts. There are numerous ‘dashboard’ tools on the market, all trying to differentiate themselves by providing the latest, greatest visualisation technology.  We would be the first to admit that data visualisation can vastly improve interpretation.  Looking at rows and columns full of numbers is a task best left to accountants who, for one reason or another, have the skills and mindset to make sense of data that thoroughly confuses the rest of us.

However, as Measureology quite rightly points out in the article, poor visualisations can have the opposite effect completely. That is, they leave the user confused and bewildered.

The six deadly design sins that Measureology identify are:

  1. Exceeding the boundaries of a single screen.
  2. Supplying inadequate context for the data
  3. Choosing inappropriate display media
  4. Ineffectively highlighting what’s important
  5. Cluttering it with useless decoration
  6. Misusing or overusing colour

We would recommend you take a good look at the article if you want to see examples of these ‘poorly constructed’ dashboards. The author has spend a great deal of effort describing why these pitfalls are a problem. However, the article was not rounded off with a view as to what is good practice when creating a dashboard. For this we will turn to the product we promote, QuickScore (or Scoreboard if you do not want to use the Balanced Scorecard language). QuickScore allows you to build PKI scorecards and then display relevant information the scorecards using dashboards.

However, the first thing you will notice when you start to use the dashboard functions in QuickScore is that they are highly restrictive.  There is only one speedometer, there are only two slider gauges, there is only one line graph, there is only one bar chart.  If you want more then tough, they are not there.  This was a conscious software development decision.  When creating a dashboard the primary consideration is the efficient display of the data, it is not how many different ways I can display the data using multiple speedometers and gauges.  The architecture behind the software was to ‘keep it simple’, display only what you need to display.

There are two golden rules that we recommend to our customers when building a dashboard:

  1. Keep it simple, display only what you need to.
  2. Never use a dial or gauge in isolation, always include some history (line chart or bar chart)

If you would like more information on the second rule, then read our article on XMR charts which explains why you should never look at snap-shot data but need to understand what may have caused a run into an amber or red position.

If you would like to see some example of dashboards in Quickcore, then why not take out a free 30 day trial.