Through a series of blog posts, we will explore how Power BI can be creatively used within law firms to create insights from data and inform business decisions. Let’s dance with data.
Data is kind of boring right? For most people a series of figures is dry, dense and uninteresting. It can even be intimidating.
What if we can make data beautiful? Accessible? Useful? Dare I say, fun? That’s one of the purposes of business intelligence – to make data relevant, easy to understand and engaging. I’d go as far to say that Business intelligence combines data with the art of story telling.
Power BI can do that through engaging visuals that make immediate sense to the viewer.
We have already looked at how Heat Maps can do this and today we look at how animating your data can bring it to life.
Bar graph races have gone viral in recent times. Demonstrating the rise and fall of companies over time, musical tastes and more sobering, the toll of Covid-19.
Bar graph races have proved popular because animations immediately capture attention. You can use that natural tendency in order to help your teams engage with important data.
The below animation shows fee growth over a financial year by practice group. You could use this within a presentation as an overview of the year and then delve further into the analytics. For this animation I used Animated Bar Chart Race.
Likewise, you can also animate pie graphs to see how the percentage of fees shifts around the firm over time. For this animation I used Play Axis.
How law firms can use animations
Animations aren’t going to give you in depth data analysis. But they do engage your audience and enable data story telling.
These graphs are a great way to represent data moving over time, reveal trends and build to a final message. It might also engender some healthy competition between teams and fee earners. You could use these graphs to show how many matters have been opened, how many hours have been dedicated to pro bono work, how many precedents have been submitted or any number of measures.
When to use animations
There is a bit of controversy around bar graph races and their use. Do they have a valid place as a data analysis tool or are they are just a gimmick?
I think it’s important to always choose the right solution for the problem at hand. If your issue necessitates the presentation of multiple layers of complex data, then an animated graph may not be the right solution. But if you are looking to grab attention and show progress in a slick and simple way, then animating your data might be the best way to do that.
If you would like to explore telling stories through animating your data, please get in touch with me – email@example.com
Join me as I explore more about how Power BI can super-charge your reporting and give you valuable business insights
About the Author
Robyna May is part of our Power BI team, her role sees her taking raw data and developing it into clear visual representations that can be used to inform strategic decisions.
Robyna has over twenty years’ experience in the Australian legal sector, both working within firms and supporting firms. She has worked as a project manager, IT manager, knowledge director, legal firm practice manager, technical consultant and software developer. This broad range of experience allows her to see both the technical and practical sides of any project. In each of these roles, she has had a keen interest in pulling data from various sources and presenting it in such a way that allows decision makers to have a clear, birds eye view of their practice.
With degrees in both IT and Law, she has a deep understanding of how law firms work and how technology can support them. She regularly writes and presents on topics associated with the intersection of IT and law.
- Posted by Verlata Administrator
- On August 11, 2020
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