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‘The decline of the dashboard’ analytics trend won’t be happening anytime soon

by Peter Smyth Tech Journalist

Gartner’s recently published Top 10 Trends in Data and Analytics for 2020 revealed that automated data stories will replace visual point-and-click authoring and exploration which will result in a decline of predefined analytics dashboards.

According to TrueCue, the analytics products and service brand, many organisations will still need to leverage analytics dashboards to properly understand their data and make accurate and successful business decisions, so the ‘decline of the dashboard’ will not be happening anytime soon.

As highlighted in Gartner’s report, the gradual shift to personalised data stories will see the most relevant insights increasingly streamed directly to individual users based on their context, role or use. Although this may be perfect for consumer-based organisations like Spotify, which create personalised data-driven stories for their customers such as ‘your year in music’, but these are not in-depth or robust enough for businesses to make critical decisions off of.

Tim Archer, Analytics Director at TrueCue said, “It is fantastic to see the business world maturing its AI and data science techniques to leverage augmented analytics and Natural Language Processing (NLP). However, it is not ready to make the leap towards a decline of the dashboard in the time-frame Gartner has stated.

“In some contexts, it may be useful to see customised datasets and metrics sent directly to the most relevant person based on their specific role or function, however this would not be robust enough to justify what Gartner is referring to as a ‘demise of discovery-based analytics dashboards’.”

Analytics is quickly becoming a key component of a modern, future-proofed business and any organisation hoping to act upon these insights requires full trust in its data. This means it is essential that data teams have the ability to interpret the information collectively so they can gain a true understanding of the organisation’s current state.

Tim explained: “Data-driven, analytically mature organisations are well informed and understand their business through descriptive and visual analytics. Having point-and-click discovery dashboards that can visualise complex data will continue to play a vital role in building a baseline understanding of the business’s data quality and this can be used to provide new users with training on the basics of analytics.

“As Gartner notes, there will be a gradual transition towards augmented insights that are contextually relevant, but we are some way off seeing ‘the decline of the dashboard’. In fact, we actually expect to see continued global growth in the usage of advanced analytics dashboards by businesses until total analytics ubiquity is achieved.”

Tim concluded: “Data and analytics maturity is an ongoing journey and trust isn’t gained in a short period. Whilst we may see the trend moving towards personalised, dynamic insights, we also believe that many organisations have not yet started their analytics maturity journey yet, so they will not be ready to receive automated data stories in place of standard intelligence dashboards anytime soon.”

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