BI tools and mobility are not mutually exclusive! Most of today’s BI tools vendors claim to support Mobile BI. But when you actually look at the tools, you find that development, publishing, usage scenarios, usability, and effectiveness, fall far short of comprehensive mobility support.

Dashboards designed by most of the BI tools do not allow intuitive navigation or access on all types of devices and screen sizes.


If organizations and developers are using these desktop-based tools and they want to provide dashboards, reports and KPI to business users with seamless access on mobile or tablet devices, they must engage in time-consuming, repetitive, expensive design and development work. To achieve mobility goals, they have to design dashboards that specific to device particular device, or set of devices, depending upon the range of devices they want to satisfy in their Ux scenario(s).

For example:

  • One dashboard for one or more for tablet devices
  • One version of the same dashboard for one or more smart phones
  • Another version of the same dashboard for one or more desktops

Mobile Access on traditional BI Tools

To successfully provide mobile access all mobile devices, developers must:

  • Segment desktop dashboards into several small dashboards
  • For each device or screen size:
  • Conceive layout and design for dashboard supporting a particular device / screen size
  • Use smart extensive customization in dashboard themes
  • Change the layout of the dashboards
  • Change the size and properties of various objects like charts, tables and filters
  • Load different data sets into the various dashboards
  • Test and tweak based on User Experience

Then, the organization must repeat this process to support each new device and screen size required now and in the future to satisfy the Mobile BI initiative. All of that juggling takes time, skill and extensive development effort, and staying abreast of new devices, screen sizes and corporate requirements is a difficult, expensive and time-consuming prospect.

Some BI tools offer native mobile development SDKs to develop mobile apps for dashboards, reports or other BI objects, assuming that option is available and the organization has a valid license. In this way, the business could develop dashboards in native mobile apps, and provide a suitable user experience for business users. But, in this scenario, developers would still have to create dashboards for specific mobile devices sizes, and for different mobile platforms e.g., Android and iOS, and they would also have to keep up with new releases and upgrades on these native mobile platforms.

When one considers all the expense, time and effort required for this type of mobility and the subsequent changes and upgrades the organization must endure in order to maintain the integrity of each version of the mobile business intelligence solution, it is hard to imagine why any enterprise would want to engage in this process.

But, don’t despair! There is a BI tool that ensures suitability for all mobile devices, tablets and desktops. It is more affordable, more flexible and much faster to implement- and it will ensure swift user adoption and business user satisfaction! By taking a ‘design once use anywhere’ approach, ElegantJ BI, self-serve, mobile solution, ensures that business users have seamless access to their dashboards, reports, KPIs and other BI objects on all types of mobile devices and screen sizes, without requiring developers to develop for a specific device or screen size. ElegantJ BI only requires developers to design once, and the same dashboard will be rendered intelligently, based on the target device and the screen size, so the user experience and performance is seamless.

The Worry-Free Mobile BI Solution using ElegantJ BI:

ElegantJ BI allows developers to:

  • Design a dashboard once
  • Trust the design engine to automatically render dashboards on target device
  • Provide the ultimate user experience to business users on every device
  • Save time, expense and effort
  • Avoid the need for native application-specific skills, development and extensive CSS skills
  • Deploy one dashboard to all business users

Everyone wants to benefit from Mobile BI, and every decision maker understands the risks associated with limited, ineffective, expensive, time-consuming customization to achieve this mobility. There is no doubt that every organization, no matter how small or large, has a mobile workforce and organizations want them to make quick, confident decisions. If the enterprise wishes to make the best use of its IT resources and make a cost-effective, user-centric decision, it must select a BI tool that can operate in a mobile work environment without the need for extensive customization or a myriad of dashboard versions.

If your organization wants truly mobile BI tools, with a great user interface, in an affordable, simple-to-implement environment, there is only one answer, and that answer is ‘design once, use anywhere’! Simple, right?

Original Source – BI Dashboards: ‘Design Once, Use Anywhere’! What a Concept!