Stop Running From Your Small Business Data

Stop Running From Your Small Business Data

It’s April which is the perfect time to take a fresh perspective on your organization’s data reporting needs. Think of it as spring cleaning for your small business. Accurately depicting organizational structure, activities, and progress is a task that most owners must grapple with at some point. Preparing to report statistical data sends many entrepreneurs into a tailspin of confusion and fear. If you are in this situation, you probably find that you delight in telling people the story behind what led you to set up shop while simultaneously dreading stakeholder requests for progress reports. An article in the Small Business Trends blog describes the predicament this way, “One of the biggest challenges to small businesses that are developing data analytics and business intelligence strategies is the way in which data insights are presented. Complicated excel sheets and poorly designed dashboards make it virtually impossible for non-IT professionals to use their data.”

Below I show you how newer simplified data analysis software and best practices can make this process much easier.

Crafting the visual representations of your business statistics is a worthwhile effort that will help to focus and bring clarity to your overall strategy. Depending on the kind of documentation you are asked to produce the process of researching, designing, presenting, and disseminating your data will vary. Let’s start by decoding some of the terms used when discussing business data.

Data Visualisation = A visual representation of data used to understand trends and patterns. Pie charts, line graphs, and flowcharts are all examples of data visualizations.

Infographic = Typically contains a unique message interpreting data that is customized depending on the point of view of the infographic designer.

The difference between visualizations and infographics has been explored here in the eagereyes.org blog “Visualisations are tools for exploring data, infographics, for communicating about data.”

Business Process Modelling or BPM = fancy term for a visual representation of a change management or business process that you need to document. It even has a standard language for how to label and annotate BPM documents called BPMN- Business Process Modeling Notation.

The infographics I have created below will give you a starting point to finding the tools best suited to take you on your data reporting journey. The first focuses on the steps to prepare for creating reports while the second gives my recommendations for the best flowchart and Infographic Software for those running a small business.

Created using Visme. An easy-to-use Infographic Maker.

Helping people to visualize and understand your data will win you respect and most importantly boost your ability to report vital information to key stakeholders quickly.

Created using Visme. An easy-to-use Infographic Maker.

About the author

Ayanna Baines-Arias administrator