business intelligence dashboard | 9 mins read

Business Intelligence Dashboard- Everything You Need to Know About This Software

business intelligence dashboard everything you need to know about this software 1648016952 8226
Archita Wagle

By Archita Wagle

What is a Business Intelligence Dashboard?

As per data provided by the National Restaurant Association, around 50,000 restaurant locations are shut down each year. With this statistic, the question is how to prevent your restaurant from becoming a casualty? There is no sure shot solution, but investing in data driven solutions and using analytics can help a business survive.

Using business intelligence can help a restaurant build up its competitive edge, boost profits and increase its customer base. Business intelligence can be defined as a technology driven approach that uses data analytics, data mining, data visualization and data tools to help a business make informed short- and long-term critical decisions. A key data visualization format is the intelligence dashboard.

A business intelligence dashboard or BI dashboard can be defined as a information management and data visualization tool that displays different data for business operations on various scales. To put it simply, an intelligence dashboard is a graphic representation of a collection of reports on a single screen. Some of the key features of business intelligence dashboards are- customizable interface, interactivity, ability to process real time data and accessibility.

How Does Business Intelligence Affect an Organization?

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Business Intelligence can help a restaurant organize and analyze data like wait time, staff performance and menu optimization, among other metrics, and transform it into actionable insights. It can track and measure performance with interactive key performance indicators (KPIs), spot emerging trends and make the business more efficient.

Here's a list of how business intelligence can positively impact an organization-

1. Better decision making-
Modern BI helps a business establish goals for future growth. A restaurant can use business intelligence to improve sales forecast and use the information to optimize employee scheduling, inventory management and overall restaurant management.
2. Improve goals-
Implementing a centralized business intelligence software can help a business automate many of its operations. It also allows the restaurant to create tailored solutions for the business. The restaurant can react to real time feedback from customers to reduce deficits in restaurant management.
3. Streamline business operations-
Business intelligence can provide a broad spectrum or specific data sets from the data warehouse (a centralized repository for storage and access of data from various data sources) for analysis, which can help streamline the daily workflow.
4. Better productivity and efficiency-
If a restaurant uses business intelligence tools to automate functions like inventory management and table management, the staff can focus on making customers happy. This results in increased revenue and profits. Good business intelligence tools can grant access to data in real time, which reduces wait time and increases productivity.
5. Competitive advantage-
A business intelligence platform can help restaurants spot trends in the market and help a business make informed decisions for the future.

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Types of Business Intelligence Dashboards

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Business Intelligence dashboards can be used by restaurants to collect various reports on one screen to get a quick overview of the restaurant management and identify potential problems.

Overall, there are four kinds of intelligence dashboards-


1. Strategic intelligence dashboard-
This is used to monitor the long-term company strategy and provide an enterprise-wide insight into a business.
2. Operational BI dashboard-
These intelligence dashboards are used for monitoring short-term operations based on real time data. They help create reports for particular data points.
3. Analytical dashboards-
This kind of intelligence dashboard aims to provide a comprehensive overview of data. Analytical dashboards are used to provide data visualization for complex and broad data points.
4. Tactical dashboards-
These BI dashboards are used to analyze and monitor processes and guide user through the decision-making process.

A restaurant can use the above mentioned intelligence dashboards to organize information by-
Data type- This approach combines reports that have similar data sources, like a sales or labor dashboard.
Store level- A restaurant can create a store-level dashboard for managers which will have a mix of sales, labor and speed of service reports. The intelligence dashboard will have all the information needed for efficient restaurant management.
Role specific BI dashboards- A restaurant can create business intelligence dashboard for each department which will help access the exact information they need. For example, the operations intelligence dashboard should have information about supply chain, overtime, speed of service and customer satisfaction reports.

Business Intelligence Dashboard Examples

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We have discussed the importance of using business intelligence dashboards for more efficient restaurant management. Let us now have a look at the BI software available in the market. Here are some dashboard examples that can help restaurants manage their daily workflow more efficiently.

Zip POS Dashboard
Zip POS Dashboard is a POS Reporting and business intelligence tool from the Hubworks business management store app. It collects various reports from across the different apps and provides it in one place. This app offers real time data of net sales, sales per labor hour, and lots more to help you grow your business. Zip POS Dashboard provides hourly, daily, weekly, monthly or yearly reports that give you an overall view of your transactions in order to identify trends and make comparisons. Zip POS Dashboard will help you understand what is happening in your business through data analysis and help you gain sharp insights into your operations.

Restaurant365
This restaurant analytics software helps you access all your sales, food costs, financials and labor numbers on a single platform. Its software allows you to view your data on easy-to-read dashboards that can help you to analyze your restaurant performance. The software also allows you to create custom business intelligence dashboard layouts, combine reports and select timeframes to further analyze data.

iDashboards
iDashboards allows you to create a custom business intelligence dashboard which can display production performance indicators and operational data from all data sources. The software helps you visualize your operations at a glance in real time and identify issues in the supply chain before they spin out of control. The software is a self service platform that's designed to help you synthesize operations data from multiple data sources.

PlateIQ
This software is an analytical intelligence dashboard for restaurants. It gives you real time access to your food expenses, updates on price fluctuations by location, and vendor and ingredient comparisons. The BI dashboard helps you track the items that have increased in price and can impact your margins. It can also process your invoices.

How to Build a BI Dashboard

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A business intelligence dashboard can help a restaurant simplify complex data sets and transform raw data into actionable business insights. Tools like Microsoft's Power BI can create a custom intelligence dashboard report. Here's a step-by-step guide to creating your own business intelligence dashboard-

1. Data collection-
Collect your data from different data sources like the point of sale, inventory management and accounting systems, or access the data warehouse to collect data from one central point. Data collected should include goals and targets, actual performance, key performance indicators, among other points.

2. Explore your dashboard-
Check the software for the options provided to create your own BI dashboard, as there are different types like bar charts, column charts, stacked bars and columns, pies charts, and line graphs, among others. Check the kind of data you want to represent. If you want a business intelligence dashboard for POS data, you can have a table for sales and also include a separate data source for a staff performance dashboard.

3. Choose the right chart-
To understand which charts suit which data source, here is a list of general classifications of charts based on their functionality, distribution, composition, comparison and relationship.

  • Pie charts are best for showing composition in percentages.
  • Stacked charts should be used to show comparison and composition.
  • Scatter plots are the best option to show the relationship between two variables.
  • Bar charts and column charts should be used for distribution and comparison.
  • Line charts and area charts are best options for comparison.


4. Save the data and publish dashboard-
Once you have created your BI dashboard, save the data. Since most of the BI dashboards are interactive they are connected to the original data sources and will keep updating as the data is updated.

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Make Better Decisions With a BI Dashboard

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A business intelligence dashboard helps a company view crucial data that lists the objects, important actions, projects and items that need action. Here are some key ways a manager can use BI dashboards to make better decisions for more efficient restaurant management-

1. Identifying trends-
A BI dashboard can help a restaurant identify and analyze positive trends and also separate and correct negative trends. An intelligence dashboard can help a manager identify trends like busiest times of day, busiest days and holiday business to help plan employee scheduling and inventory.

2. Improved accuracy-
BI dashboards help a business gain accurate data to help in planning, analysis, and reporting due to real time access to data sources which provide insights into how your business performs. Business intelligence removes guesswork from the decision making process.

3. Better food management-
Business intelligence dashboards also help a business predict future outcomes by analyzing historical and current data to find patterns and trends. This also leads to reduction in food waste as better forecasts improve the daily workflow and inventory management. BI dashboards help you understand which products you're likely to need the most or least.

4. Centralized point of access-

As more data sources emerge, there is a strong need to compile a centralized point of access. BI dashboards can provide interactive reports which visualize every step of a business process and predict outcomes, thus providing business users with instant, actionable insights.

5. Flexibility-
A centralized business intelligence dashboard makes it possible to access and analyze invaluable insights from multiple devices anytime and anywhere. This flexibility leads to increased productivity.

Business Intelligence Dashboard FAQs

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Q. BI dashboards v/s BI reports
A. BI dashboards can help users understand complex reports and are ideal for at-a-glance overviews of performance. Reports have more details and are useful to take apart data to gain insights. Dashboards can be updated in real time with cloud-based technology.

Q. What are the best practices for creating or using a business intelligence dashboard?
A. Familiarise yourself with the types of BI dashboards.
Think about the context for the BI dashboards who are they for and what information do they need?
Information must be provided in a simple and easy to understand format.
Emphasize on the most important KPIs by highlighting them through visual positioning and size.
Display targets and goals in different colours so that users can immediately spot where they're falling short.
Make the dashboards interactive, so that users can work with the data to suit their needs.

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