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Jun 29, 2015

Video: Selecting a Reporting or Data Visualization Tool

Melissa Coates Posted by Melissa Coates

There are many considerations when reviewing toolsets for reporting and data visualization. It is essential to determine which features are critical or nice to have when evaluating functional requirements. Here are some things to keep in mind:RightDataVisualizationTool.png

Functional requirements typically include features such as:

  • Visualization options
  • Interactivity/data discovery
  • Ease of use
  • Formatting control/flexibility
  • Mobile device delivery
  • Drill down, drill through
  • Key performance indicators
  • Geospatial analysis, custom maps
  • Printing, exporting
  • Scheduled delivery, alerts
  • Parameters, filters, slicers
  • Data sources supported
  • Integration with self-service data cleansing & integration tools

Technology considerations are also highly important in the evaluation process. Ideally, the evaluation process is a collaboration between technical and functional areas. Technology concerns often include items such as:

  • Security, sharing
  • Edition & version of software
  • Software dependencies
  • Integration into environment
  • Customization ability
  • Auditing, logging
  • Extensibility, scalability
  • Deployment on-premises vs cloud vs hybrid

The people, or personnel, aspect of any technology project is always critical. Some personnel items to consider include:

  • Executive support
  • User advocates
  • User population type
  • Staff skillsets & preferences
  • Staff training needs

Take a look at this short video for more on selecting a reporting or data visualization tool.


Want more information on how to selecting the right reporting or data visualization tool for your needs? Contact us for a consultation. 


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Melissa Coates

About The Author

Melissa Coates

Melissa is a former Principal Architect with BlueGranite. Melissa is a Data Platform MVP and volunteers with the Charlotte BI Group in North Carolina. To learn more about BI, data warehousing, and data lake development, please also visit Melissa’s personal blog at

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