Designing a KPI dashboard

1. Introduction

A dashboard is actually nothing more than a page that shows text, numbers and maybe some graphics in order to inform the user about certain information.

Of course it can only show data and numbers that are stored or calculated in the application. Creating a dashboard will consist of the following parts:

  1. A data item called Dashboard, that can be loaded with the values that need to be reported.

  2. The flow part Dashboard which takes care of cleaning it and filling it with the actual values.

  3. The user flow Dashboard which displays the values in a transparent and well organized way.

The example below is a dashboard for an online school. It shows information about the status of assigned questionnaires and their questions.

It is a personal dashboard: each teacher gets the information from the questionnaires for which he is responsible.

You also can create dashboards for specific groups, like departments, everyone in the organization, specified per customer or even customer type.

2. Create the data item Dashboard

Data dashboard

  1. Fill the Item pick list. The pick list contains the names of all types of data that the dashboard shows. If you use different dashboards, you might decide to design more than one data Dashboard (Dashboard finance, Dashboard HR…)
    Edit property

  2. Value is the result of the calculations of lookups.

3. Create the flow part Dashboard

  1. It deletes all existing dashboards of the current user, so we start with a clean slate.
  2. For every applicable dashboard item it calculates the value that should be presented and it creates a data item for that.

4. Create the user flow Dashboard

  1. Use the wizard to create the user flow Dashboard. Only show an overview page.
  2. Add the button Update my dashboard that connects to the flow part Dashboard. Provide it with the current user. It will clear and regenerate the dashboard of the current user.
    User flow dashboard overview

This is a simple dashboard: you can add more data by using a page with more columns. You can also insert graphs if you wish.