5 features SMBs want from data visualization

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Data underpins the operations and strategic decisions of every business. Yet these days, data is generated faster than it can be digested, making it challenging for small and midsize businesses to get the most value from this vital asset. Many decision makers – whether data analysts or senior-level executives – struggle to draw meaningful conclusions in a timely manner from the array of data available to them.

Reliance on spreadsheets or custom reporting and analysis tools only limits your flexibility and output. Spreadsheets were not designed for data analysis, and those specialized reporting and analysis tools often lack the ability to integrate with other critical business applications and processes. Dependence on the IT group for ad hoc reports can slow insights and decisions, putting the company at a competitive disadvantage. Business decision makers feel a loss of control waiting for the already overburdened IT department to generate critical reports.

Savvy companies are moving beyond static graphs, spreadsheets and reports by using data visualization to transform how they see and share insights that were previously undiscovered in their data. Since data visualization spans a broad range of options, from static to dynamic and interactive, it serves a variety of needs within organizations. As a result, companies adopting data visualization are able to find greater value from information hidden throughout their environments.

The right data visualization solution will give you more than meets the eye.

According to the recently published paper Data Visualization: Making Big Data Approachable and Valuable, the top five key features you should look for in a data visualization solution include:

  • Highly integrated graphics that incorporate data visualization best practices
  • Integrated, intuitive, approachable analytic capabilities
  • Easy report building
  • In-memory processing capabilities
  • Ability to easily distribute insights via mobile devices and Web portals

With data visualization tools, SMBs can free themselves from the constraints of spreadsheets and make it possible for every level of business user to tap into the power of data-driven decision making. So how will you visualize the potential in your data?

tags: analytics, bi, business intelligence, data visualization, SAS4SMB, SMBs, Visual Analytics, visual data

One Comment

  1. Posted June 3, 2013 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Great post... I work for SharpCloud, and we feel we are disrupting this whitespace between Excel/Powerpoint and Big Data visualisation. All businesses have 'small' or 'medium' data, for which the panacea are pivot tables and mammoth powerpoint decks. For us, the key to making this better is being able to feed data into your communication (making it alive) while being able to easily collaborate, share and make decisions - without redefining your company culture or stopping the use of tools you are already comfortable with.

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