Recently I’ve seen a lot of sexy dashboards created in Tableau, doing some very cool things. It got me thinking, these look great but actually they’re useless, the report users would look at them once, think “wow”, and then never use them again as they’re not providing any useful information.

If you’re building reports remember why you’re doing it – to provide meaningful and actionable information, and supplying the information in as few clicks as possible to the user. Don’t make your reports like an Aston Martin without an engine – i.e. looks great but not useful for the main requirement it needs to meet. If you can make dashboard sexy that’s great but remember the main purpose of the report is information supply.