How Data Visualization Software Can Simplify Reporting

Data visualization comes in many shapes and forms. Accounting teams can highlight trends using line graphs, while marketers can understand their target audiences’ needs with pie charts and word clouds. Across your organization, teams use data to evaluate their performance and make decisions for the future.

That being said, there is a whole science to creating effective visuals, and this science starts with understanding why they are so important. Here are four reasons why good graphics can simplify your reporting.

Graphics provide context for large collections of data.

Across the world, humans create a stunning amount of data. In 2018, people created 2.5 quintillion bytes of data each day, with 90 percent of that data generated within the previous two years alone. Even the most skilled analysts can’t sort through this amount of business data and gain insights. This is where visuals come in.

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Analysts can set up reporting dashboards that provide data visualization for them. For example, an eCommerce team might track sales data over the course of Black Friday compared to previous years. This provides context and insight that a spreadsheet full of sales numbers can’t easily do. Raw data is essential to business analytics, but data visualization can help teams immediately understand what the numbers mean.

Different teams can use data visualization software.

Roughly 93 percent of Americans struggle with some level of math anxiety, a problematic figure, considering that math-heavy occupations are expected to increase by 28 percent from 2016 to 2026. Companies are becoming increasingly data-driven, relying on big data to provide actionable insights for teams.

Fortunately, interactive visuals can make data less intimidating while helping workers improve the work they do. Data visualization software can help employees create engaging infographics that can be easily understood across the organization. Brightly colored bar charts and diagrams help people look at numbers differently that help them take action based on the information.

It’s entirely possible that data visualization tools can help Americans overcome their math anxiety or at least help them learn to live with it.

Many tools can auto-populate metrics for easy enterprise reporting.

What is enterprise reporting? Enterprise reporting is the distribution of metrics and key information to decisions makers within a business. Business intelligence can automatically pull numbers from a large data source and present the information in a clear and meaningful way. Instead of sending an analyst to comb through the data and assemble reports, the software systems work for them. This allows business leaders to focus on finding actionable insights and implementing changes for growth. Even the most basic big data and metrics tools can auto-populate visuals for teams to gain insights from.

Advanced analytics systems can save companies time and labor because math-centric employees can focus on launching solutions rather than simply reporting the numbers.

Companies of all sizes can use data visualization tools.

Access to key metrics and analytics isn’t restricted to enterprise organizations with large software budgets. Tools like Google Analytics share real-time data on website traffic and social media campaigns, helping small businesses and new start-ups grow.

While many companies invest in paid data visualization tools to improve their visuals, there are options for businesses that don’t have those options. Any company can use data to guide their choices and confirm their decisions. It’s just a matter of learning what data these teams find valuable and ensuring that the reporting is accurate.

As you develop reports within your organization, don’t shy away from creative data visualization and engaging reporting tools. A picture is still worth a thousand words, which means a few well-made graphs can win over executives and stakeholders to your cause.