In This Chapter
Getting a quick look at important data with dashboards and scorecards
Understanding the relationship between dashboards, scorecards, and business intelligence
Keeping tabs on key indicators for executives
Using briefing books and portal command centers to summarize reports and data
Finding quality dashboard and scorecard products
Think about how a child learns to read. You begin by reading a picture-oriented book to the child, one with a short sentence at the bottom of each page ("See the bunny eat lettuce!"). Pretty soon, the child figures out how to read the book without your help. The child turns the pages, occasionally squealing in delight because of that favorite picture coming up on the next page.
Now, think about how behavioral researchers work with dolphins or chimpanzees to better understand how they think. When the chimp pushes a button, a banana drops down; when the dolphin presses a lever with a flipper, it's rewarded with a dolphin treat (whatever that is).
These are the principles behind dashboards and scorecards. Wait a minute! Stop that booing and hissing, and put down those rotten vegetables! I'm not trying to insult anyone! I'm very serious. Dashboards and scorecards are intended to be a ridiculously easy way to provide online business intelligence to people who are, uh, "too busy" to figure out how to use the full complement of business intelligence tools.
The fundamental principle ...