What is a Performance Point Dashboard
A performance point dashboard is simply a business intelligence dashboard that has been built and deployed using Microsoft's Performance Point server product. A performance point dashboard is very similar to other reporting and business intelligence dashboards in that it provides graphical representations of company data presented in a dashboard metaphor. The main advantage and draw of a performance point dashboard is that it uses Microsoft tools and is therefore designed to be used in conjunction with popular Microsoft tools like Excel and SharePoint.
Benefits Performance Point Dashboard
The biggest benefits of any performance point dashboard can be associated with Microsoft Excel and Microsoft SharePoint. These two products are the lynchpin of Microsoft's BI strategy (at least from a presentation standpoint) and the performance point dashboard is designed to work with them to create a familiar platform for Microsoft users to live in when creating and using dashboards. The performance point dashboard platform can create relatively sophisticated charts, and allow for a familiar look and feel that users will be comfortable with in the beginning.
Difficulties of Performance Point Dashboard
While a performance point dashboard has its advantages it also has drawbacks. The biggest one is that charts and visualizations created with performance point dashboard can be complicated to create and advanced visualizations often require rather difficult and sophisticated use of formulas and scripting language. The difficulty in using advanced features of performance point dashboard are typically the biggest reason why even Microsoft-focused operations will often look to alternatives to the performance point dashboard.
Using Performance Point Dashboard
From a user's perspective one of the biggest advantages of the performance point dashboard is that it can be seamlessly published in a SharePoint portal. SharePoint is a collaboration suite from Microsoft that has gained broad acceptance within small organizations and in enterprise departmental deployments. Users are eager to see their data visualized within the SharePoint environment to make life easier and to minimize the number of portals they need to use in order to understand their business.
Alternatives to Performance Point Dashboard
While working with performance point dashboard can have significant advantages for Microsoft dedicated operations, there are also significant disadvantages. The lack of usability and the complex operation of more sophisticated controls and visualizations can be a significant deterrent to using performance point dashboard. New products, however, from companies like EMANIO are becoming available that are making the process of creating dashboards and publishing them within SharePoint easier and far more intuitive than is possible with performance point dashboard. The challenge for companies that have been using performance point dashboard based dashboards is to transition from a performance point dashboard to a new platform.