Eliminating the BI 'Blank Stare' in the Board Room

Yellowfin's Storyboard is designed to help business intelligence analysts present and explain the value of data in order to improve the decision-making processes of SMBs. By Geoffrey Oldmixon

Business intelligence (BI) software vendor Yellowfin is trying to help those that use its products to explain their value to nonusers. The company’s latest product, Storyboard, is a PowerPoint-like presentation and collaboration platform designed to make it easy for BI analysts to present information and findings to others on their teams or in their businesses.

“By blending BI with a comprehensive presentation platform, Storyboard enables users to integrate interactive data-rich presentations into their natural decision-making processes, to generate an analytics culture, realize ROI, and drive fact-based action,” says Yellowfin CEO Glen Rabie. 

Why Storyboard?

In a press release submitted to ChannelPro-SMB, Yellowfin reports that technology research firm Gartner “has indicated around 80 percent of BI projects fail, suggesting that only one in five BI programs are capable of positively impacting decision-making.”

Yellowfin contends that lack of understanding and poor communications are the underlying culprits. “The failure rates of BI implementations, and persistently low user adoption rates, are reflective of our inability to reimagine the way in which we communicate the key messages represented by data,” Rabie says.

For that reason, his company is investing in the launch of Storyboard. Rabie hopes that providing better tools for communicating the value of his product will reverse those BI failure rates. “For the most part, the way dashboards communicate and display information has remained fundamentally stagnant, failing to adapt to the shifting user base for reporting and analytics,” Rabie explains. “Storyboard will solve the problem and change the way people consume and act on data.”

How It Works

Storyboard is fully integrated into the core Yellowfin application and comes as part of a standard Yellowfin license. Users access Storyboard by logging into their Yellowfin instance via the browser and navigating to the Storyboard tab on the Yellowfin UI.

Like the core Yellowfin application, Storyboard is completely Web-based, enabling off-site or dispersed employees to view presentations in standardized formats.

Rich content, such as images, graphics or video, can be added to any slide within a Storyboard.  Users can also embed interactive Yellowfin reports to any Storyboard slide. This feature enables users to explore data collectively during presentations in conjunction with supporting material.

Additional features of Storyboard include:

  • Global Filters - Multiple audiences can view presentations. At the same time, presenters can ensure they only view the data relevant to them.
  • Associated Content - Up to five secondary slides can be added to each primary slide within a Storyboard, helping to substantiate or contextualize key concepts.
  • Search & Bookmarks - Presentations can be listed as favorites. Individual slides can be bookmarked for later reference.
  • Bookmark Snapshots - Users can take a snapshot of a report within Storyboard, capturing data at a specific moment in time.
  • Saving & Archiving - SMB users can update an existing Storyboard or store copies previous versions.
  • Themes - Users can create a theme. Slides can be tailored to reflect corporate color schemes or branding. Those themes can be saved and shared.
  • Distribution - Storyboards can be sent to the inboxes of individuals.
  • Notes & Comments - Individuals can add personal notes or ideas. Comments can be private or public. Private comments can be viewed only by the original author or selected individual. Any user with access to that Storyboard can view public comments.

Storyboard will be made publicly available as part of the latest release of Yellowfin, Yellowfin 6.2.  Yellowfin 6.2 will be made generally available in early December 2012.