Business intelligence (BI) is officially defined as a variety of software applications utilized for the analysis of a particular organization’s raw data. For us, it’s more of a discipline that’s comprised of various related stuff, i.e. data mining, queries, analytical processing, and finally the report.
In general, the main idea behind BI is playing a key and significant role in the strategic and methodical planning process of that same organization.
Now here comes the book by Mico Yuk and Stephanie Diamond entitled “Data Visualization for Dummies.” The question is, what sort of significance does it offer for a company, organization, government agency, or business? Let’s find out…
Basically, the book serves as a guide for introducing beginners to a new methodology in handling and synthesizing data, which in this case, is presented in new method, instead of the traditional numbers, stats, columns, and rows. The book gives numerous tools and tips on ways to manifest and reveal trending and relationships, and in the process being able to interpret data that used to be complex into a clearer and more concise diagram.
The book further explains that effective data analysis will require learning how to successfully synthesize data into something that presents a friendlier story approach, which in turn will appeal to the audience or readers. Business visualization is really about three important processes; analyzing large amount of data, communicating the same data in a rather meaningful way, and then slicing it for multiple views.
For us though, the book is the most valuable tool for business intelligence practitioners. It reveals steps and processes in not just interpreting complex data, but more on maximizing the impact of that business intelligence data.
Why do you need it? It’s because in a corporate and large-industry world, big and complex data as well as sophisticated analytics make it very difficult and even almost impossible to explain and then inform people, specifically on what a particular set of data says. In the traditional sense of the word (business intelligence), it’s all about pie charts, PowerPoint slides, and printouts. But those are only possible and applicable for simple and convenient data. So for very complex data that is characterized by a constant state of fluctuation, you will need more than those. What you need is a concrete and proven framework or method that clearly defines the insights you are to present. Without this framework you are going to certainly confuse your audience.
The book is written by Mico Yuk, an authority in business intelligence. She pairs with Stephanie Diamond, an expert online marketer and strategy consultant. While the book itself seems complex, it’s actually written in a very friendly and convenient flow, starting with the basics of data collection and identification, audience identification, data visualization concepts, planning, and detailing how to measure the way users use data or the final product.
In the end, we highly recommend Data Visualization for Dummies, both for beginners and the even more experienced business intelligence practitioners, especially if you are looking for something that offers a complete framework for planning and then execution while at the same time successfully avoiding pitfalls.