Published On: Wed, Aug 2nd, 2017

How Data Visualization Enhances Decision Making

Data is the new oil. Data has key insights that could power an organization’s growth. Every organization needs to know the key insights like customer engagement, operational efficiency, customer retention, marketing and sales analysis etc. With the right data, stakeholders can make the right decision at the right time, and improve an organization’s performance, reduce costs and capture market share.

Here’s the problem. You could have the best data in the world but it would come to nothing if the stakeholders are not able to get the insights they need to make business-critical decisions.

According to recent research conducted by IBM, 65% of all humans are visual learners. The human brain is wired to recognize visually represented data more quickly and process them to get an actionable insight. Data presented in endless rows and column would appeal to a mathematical mind but not everyone is wired this way.

How Data Visualization Enhances Decision Making

This is where Data Visualization plays a vital role in enhancing the decision making process and improving the overall performance of an organization.

In simple terms data visualization refers to the visual representation of data in the form of pie charts, graphs, maps and other interactive elements. When data is represented using such interactive elements, it is easier for stakeholders to know what is happening, recognize patterns and trends, and take decisions accordingly.

Most big data analytics platforms come with their own data visualization tools that allow analysts to represent data in an interactive format to the stakeholders. But such in-built data visualization tools come with limitations. They are not very flexible when it comes to customization and have a limited amount of visual representation elements.

Now stand alone data visualization tools, like Tableau and Qlikview, are a different ball game altogether. They allow for customizable data dashboards and come with intelligent visualization design that makes data and insight discovery a walk in the part for decision makers. Thinklayer, is an India-based big data analytics and visualization company that specializes in building custom data dashboards and industry specific KPIs using these industry leading tools.

If you or your organization have not jumped the data visualization band wagon, it is time you did.Here’s how data visualization could enhance the decision making process:

1. Real-time Decision Making – Real-time decision making can be powered by data visualization. Data visualization allows for instant interpretation of data by stakeholders, significantly reducing the time it takes to make critical decisions, shortening response times to important business developments. Faster decision making makes the organization more fluid and responsive to changing market or business landscape.

2. Data Discovery Made Simple – Human brain is able to digest information in the form of visuals more easily than a string of numbers on a screen. Data visualization brings out the hidden facets of the data, helping stakeholders zero-in on actionable insights. The point here is that a lot vital information could slip the stakeholders’ attention if the data is not presented in an easy-to-understand format.

3. Identify Business-Critical Trends – When data is represented using visual tools like pie charts, maps, graphs, bars, the viewer is able to identify trends or patterns in a data that might lead to an insight not discovered earlier. Finding a particular pattern or trend is the end-game and leads to a more insightful decision making process. Such insights not only help in improving existing business processes but also lead to reduced costs and opening up of new business lines, depending on the insight.

4. Data Discovery for the Team – Data discovery and visualization is a team effort. Often times, there are more than one stakeholders involved in the decision making process. Data visualization lets team work together using their own set of skills to manipulate and present the data more effectively.

About the Author

- Paul Linus is an eminent online journalist who has been writing news, features and editorials on different websites from across the world for about a decade. He can be contacted at

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