Wednesday, January 29, 2014

First steps to create your dashboards

One of the most typical situations with Dashbuilder is that you already have some existing data you want to create dashboards from.

You can add new dashboards by configuration with Dashbuilder's composition tool, by following these steps:

Step 01 - You must first carefully think what data needs to be displayed to users and which is the desired format. It’s both important to have the right data and to display it in simple and concise way. Dashboards must be simple to use and to understand, focusing on displaying only relevant information.

At this stage, you must also take into account performance and volume concerns.

Step 02 - Make sure the data is available through an standard protocol and a known format, suitable to be queried. Typically, a database or an structured file would be enough. If this is not available in this format, you can always create a new connector or publish it through any custom integration.

Step 03 - Setup connectivity parameters. By using the tool with the right privileges, you can define connectors parameters (i.e. JDBC connections) and data providers configuration (i.e. SQL queries)

Step 04 -  Configure one or several workspaces with as many pages as needed. Set up navigation across them, for example, by using the provided menus. It’s important to realize every page or workspace will have its own access URL, that can be linked from any other application.

Step 05 - Add indicators (charts) and reports to pages, and configure them. By using the KPI indicator editor, you set them to display the right information at the right place.

Step 06 - Configure filter and drill down capabilities. This component controls how navigation is performed when users click on the charts, by filtering the data by the right property value.

Step 07 - Set the right permissions for each level of information. You can define which elements of the dashboards should be visible or even editable for a different range of users or roles.

Step 08 - Customize look'n' feel. Sometimes, a custom look and feel is required. There are different tools to modify the standard look, by providing CSS and graphical resources, as well as custom HTML content.

Step 09 - Test your dashboards for each role.

Step 10 - Gather user feedback and improve your dashboards based on it.

You can find more information about how to implement each of these steps at the project's documentation page

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