The Store Dashboard’s key objective was to communicate to the store manager on his store’s performance in comparison to its peer groups.

My Role


  • I was responsible for designing the new user experience from an existing dashboard by interviewing the leadership team and understanding the significance of a particular number and what it’s implications were in the real world.


  • This helped me build a narrative around each data point and helped me design a dashboard which made it easy to understand and put it in context.

Results


  • After multiple iterations, we made the information more consumable by adding elements of story telling to the dashboard thereby improving the visual appeal also in the process.

Store dashboard showing store performance

The initial team that built the idea of the dashboard was convinced that displaying the right number would be sufficient and that’s what would be ideal given the audience.

Initial view that focused on the important numbers

The audience for this application were store mangers and the business team was of the opinion that charts or graphical elements only created hindrances to consuming the data and numbers were the way to go. On futher interviews, we understood that currently these numbers were tracked in spreadheets and hence there was resistance in moving to a more graphical view.

Shown above is a version where we tried to improve the readability of the data by inculcating fundamentals of visual design and reducing non data ink, but we still thought it had along way to go before it could be used effectively.

On testing the first version, we found the users were able to find what they were looking for but deriving actionable inferences took a lot longer than expected.

Processing numerical data consumes more time as it can only be processed by the brain serially, whereas a graphical representation can be processed in parallel and understood intuitively.

Hence we suggested adding a story around all the numerical values so that the inferences could be read from the narrative. Shown below are a few lo-fi variations of the dashboard we did to help the team visualize the possible solutions.

Initial view that focused on the important numbers

First version with a narrative

added to each data point

Adding a story around each data point made consuming the numbers easier and users understood the meaning and context for a particular data point. It also meant the data could easily be consumed by new or seasoned store managers equally well.

Further testing revealed that the main objective of the dashboard was to highlight how the store performed in comparison to its peer group.

The individual pieces of data were being represented and understood well but the dashboard as a whole lacked a narrative.

How the store performed was not as important as how it did when compared to its peers (stores in the same geography/size/age).

Relative Variance

Absolute Values

Comparison of views that show absolute vs relative variance in performance metrics

View that displayed the variance

Highlighting the variance in performance between a store and its peers became the overarching narrative of the store dashboard among displaying other key data points.


The wireframing helped communicate the real value that a graphical view would bring, ultimately helping us achieve a better visualization and a more effective outcome for the store manager.