BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE SOLUTIONS — HOW TO GAUGE SUCCESS
Most information management systems offer visual representations of data, which is really what the capability is all about, says Andrew Grasso, marketing coordinator at CRC Information Systems in Scottsdale, AZ. "The information is out there (in the system), so now you're just specifying that you want it to be displayed in one centralized area so you can monitor it very quickly," he explains. "We choose not to use that term (dashboard) for the capability."
Grasso contends that several of the modules in CRC's The System solution offer the functionality of a dashboard, including the XmR 13-week rolling history graphs, Executive Overview customizable entry screen and Financial Ratios modules. The 24-month rolling history reports built into each module also fit the bill, he says.
Use of graphics along with tabular data has been a reporting feature of state-of-the-art management solutions for several years, asserts Chris Wood, vice president sales and marketing at DiMS! organizing print in Lisle, IL. The first screen that comes up when users log on to the company's management system is a dashboard, which it calls iDiMS! Today. Part of what distinguishes this screen as a dashboard are the workflow functions it incorporates along with the reporting feature, he explains.
"I think the term dashboard is still very applicable because it registers with people," says Bob Kutschke, general manager of the Business Workflow Product Group at Kodak's Graphic Communications Group (KGCG) in Rochester, NY. "We treat this capability as part of the core Kodak EMS system, though, because we believe it is critical to a company's ability to operate efficiently."
Key financial indicators are going to be applicable across industries, but other requirements are unique to the printing industry, Kutschke adds. "We had a client ask us to create a dashboard just around the proof in/proof out workflow step, for example," he says.