Here we look at how one company tracks the performance of their vendors. First, a note about their vendor management philosophy in general. Upon establishing a relationship with a partner company, a service level agreement is reached and written into the contracts. There is a governance process to overseeing the vendor relationships that is taken quite seriously. As the relationship matures, data collection and analysis is constantly done. The IT department established an SLA Portal with this Vendor Compliance Scorecard as the main tool. The dashboard shown below brings up a real pet peeve of mine. I can’t stand unclear tab onstates. For example, take a look at the two tabs in this dashboard. One says Vendor Breach Summary for last Month and the other says Vendor Compliance. Can someone please tell me which is the on state? On dashboard after dashboard, I find unclear tabs. The top level tab line is clear. It is obvious that we are on the dashboard tab as the red on the tab continues directly under it to the horizontal bar. On the second level however, there is a white line that separates the tab from the bar. I would guess that the vendor compliance tab is on, however, it is not 100% clear to me.
Homework: Can we stop designing by accident and take a moment to study some basic principles of graphic design? Take a look right now at The Elements of Graphic Design: Space, Unity, Page Architecture, and Type. A great source of sample dashboard designs is this book: Information Dashboard Design: The Effective Visual Communication of Data.
So what or who is The Dashboard Spy? As his about page states, The Dashboard Spy is just a guy interested in the design of enterprise dashboards. He could not find any executive dashboard design source books (or even screenshots of real business dashboards) and so set about creating his own. Finally convinced to post his extensive collection of dashboard screenshots online, he was amazed to find how popular it has become. If you have a digital dashboard, balanced scorecard, or any business intelligence graphic to share, send an email to info _at_ dashboardspy.com. Also check out The Dashboard Spy’s books on enterprise dashboards. His current favorite is Enterprise Dashboards: Design and Best Practices for IT, the only book on actually implementing executive dashboards.