Tips on creating competitive intelligence dashboards By tailoring dashboards to show the latest competitor data and market insights on a single screen for different user groups, companies have been able to increase the effective communication and use of their competitive intelligence. The best competitive intelligence dashboards combine text, information feeds, images, video and interactive elements. They can range from basic displays of information to the more interactive, dynamic formats where users can combine different data sets and even conduct predictive modeling.

We have witnessed how dashboards are energizing intelligence teams to become more active in communicating with their internal audiences.

Competitive intelligence dashboards that enjoy high usage rates by key stakeholders share five core common characteristics.

1. Well defined target audiences
2. Flexibility in formats and functionalities
3. Commenting and alerts features
4. Support from key stakeholders
5. Regular reviews and audits

The target audience for each dashboard must be well defined, and the purpose of each dashboard considered and linked to a key business processes or decisions. Usage rates tend to increase when several different perspectives from important stakeholders are included.

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Stakeholders have different preferences, so the ability to change the look and feel as well as the different functionalities on specific stakeholder dashboards is important.

Dashboards that are constantly updated attract more users. In fact, the more they mimic social media platforms, the better. For example, ensure that your users get to see other users’ contributions displayed as part of a landing page on their dashboards, or in sections such as “latest comments”, “top rated items” and “most read articles”.

It is always helpful to identify users, preferably senior stakeholders, who will lead by example and be active commentators. So invite your senior management to start interesting discussions on key dashboards; this will trigger other users to take part.

Things change over time, and so do the needs of your users. You can only keep your competitive intelligence system valuable to its users if you can monitor their usage rates and conduct an audit of their needs from time to time. This will impact how you upgrade your dashboard from time to time.
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