A dashboard is a vital tool to understand the business performance of an organization. From a single interface, decision makers have access to key performance indicators (KPIs) of their business.
The successful implementation of a dashboard is complex and requires a step-by-step
process—a methodology that considers all aspects of the project lifecycle.
Let’s see the Life Cycle of Tableau dashboard.
Stage 1:- Functional Knowledge
Functional knowledge is where it all begins. In this stage, Business Analyst plays a very important role to understand the current functionality of the business. Also, to understand the terminology of the business.
Stage 2:- Requirement Analysis
Once we understand the functionality of the business, the requirement analysis comes into the picture. In this stage BA & Architects have to analyze below-mentioned points before proceeding to start planning and developing dashboards:
- Dashboard requirement
- How data flows in the existing system, and the environment where data is situated
- Layout and blueprint/mock-ups of dashboards
- The scope of the dashboard
- Value added to the business
- Required tool for development/testing etc and their costing.
Also, This is the phase where it is very important to ask yourself a mandatory question, are we/our team really capable of fulfilling requirements?
Stage 3:- Plan
Once the requirement analysis is completed then Planning phase comes into the picture where we have to plan the end-to-end development and delivery. First, the project team members must be identified and their roles clearly defined.
In this phase, major involvement is of Project Manager and Team lead and their planning include:
- Timeline and number of resource needed and their roles(BA, Developers, QA)
- Allocation work and leave plan(buffer resources)
- Dependencies and challenges
- Methodologies to follow: Agile, Scrum, Waterfall etc and divide them accordingly
Stage 4:- Technical Specs
In this phase, we must understand the technical requirement of the project which includes tools(like Tableau, QlikView, PowerBI etc) on which the dashboards need to be developed, data source setup and flow of data from transactional DB to reporting DB, testing tool.
Once these have been decided, Involvement of BA and Technical Architect is required to understand the data mapping between mock-up dashboard to tables and fields present in the database, the relationship between different tables in case of relational databases(RDBMS). And at the end, once all of these things been decide, document them and make them verified by the client or the technical team.
In short, this phase includes:
- All the technical details
- Joins, relations, and SQL
- Credentials to access the database, reporting server credentials to publish them
- KPI’s needed and Business logic
Stage 5:- Development
Role performed by the developer(s):- SQL developer to generate the query, BI developer to design, develop reports/dashboards and if required, front-end developer to embed them in web-portal
Their task includes:
- Connecting databases and build dimension model
- Development of sheets & dashboards
- Publishing them to server
- Look n feel and appropriate filters on reports/dashboards etc.
- Configure scheduling, refresh, and security
- If required, Customization like embedding in web-portal, passing filters from the webpage, UI developer to develop webpage where dashboard needs to be embedded.
- Unit testing
Stage 6:- QA and Testing
Role performed by Test Engineer/Quality Analyst:-
- UI and functionality testing as per mock-up
- Data validation and SQL testing
- Testing schedules jobs, and security testing
- Testing of customization applied.
- Performance testing:- Report opening time, with/without the webpage
Stage 7:- UAT
UAT(user acceptance testing) is a crucial process in any BI project. It is the first time when business and IT together really see the results of a lot of combined and separate efforts. It is the process through which the necessary corrections and adjustments must be made to make the difference between project success and project failure.
This includes majorly data validation and functionality testing by the Business user.
Stage 8:- Production & Support
Once the dashboard has been built and tested by the user, it is deployed into production. Security requirements must be implemented in the production environment. Integration within a corporate network environment must be completed (including considerations for portal frameworks etc.) and after the product goes live, and actual traffic comes, monitoring, support, and maintenance must be provided.
Thanks for reading this, I hope this will be useful to you.
Love to hear your feedback, query if any.
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