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Visionary Advice: Why You Need Dashboard Checklists

Have you ever published a dashboard to have the users come back and say “The dashboard is broken”?

Everyone should be raising their hands. We’ve all done it at some point.

How a Tableau Visionary Creates a Dashboard Checklist

By going through a list of common data source and dashboard items before publishing, you can prevent a lot of common issues with data sources and dashboards from making it to your users.

Using a checklist such as this can help reduce errors, increase efficiency, improve confidence and trust, and act as training and process documentation. Having a checklist review as part of your dashboard development process can help catch bugs and errors that are sometimes easily overlooked — especially on large, complicated, or fast-moving projects.

  • Initial Development: Review the checklist prior to first publishing to production

  • Enhancements and Updates: Use the checklist as a script for regression testing when making changes

  • Code Review/Peer Review: Having a second set of eyes on your work will often catch items that you may not, being too close to the project

  • User Testing: Providing users a modified list of these items can provide guidance on what they should be testing and providing feedback on, which can produce more actionable and organized feedback

But, you’re not here to hear me talk about checklists, you’re here to see the checklist! So, without further ado...

Just a couple of notes before I go:

  • This is not necessarily fully comprehensive of everything that can/should be tested or reviewed

  • However, it is fairly comprehensive and not every one of these items will apply to every dashboard, environment, or organization

  • I firmly believe processes should be helpful, not just add work. If a process is adding more overhead than it is adding value, modify it and make it suit your needs!

  • Think of this as a living document, and update it as the technology, product versions, and your own processes change. Make it work for you!

  • I didn’t come up with the concept of Publishing Checklists. This is mine. I’m certain there are others out there, so please share!


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