TNECD uses Tableau to share investment and programmatic information with a variety of audiences, including department executives, commissioners, partners in the General Assembly (who review and approve the Governor’s priorities and budget) and of course, taxpayers.
TNECD leadership reports on strategic plan progress on a quarterly basis. Previously, the department used Excel to track against KPIs but data extraction and analysis was inefficient, hindering transparency between the department and external stakeholders.
Sally Avery, Director of the Center for Economic Research in Tennessee (CERT), manages the department’s research initiatives and led the execution of the dashboard platform. The dashboards serve to bring the department’s strategic objectives to life in a visually appealing manner. “We wanted robust data on department activity and economic trends to be available to all stakeholders at any point in time,” explains Sally.
When the team migrated to the Tableau platform, they instituted strong data governance standards and expanded their centralized data repository, enabling them to share their progress against the strategic plan.
With Tableau, TNECD created customized dashboards for internal and external audiences that demonstrate who is investing in Tennessee and where jobs are being created. The dashboards encompass the entirety of the department’s work, with the option for citizens to drill into community-specific and programmatic details. These dashboards have caught the attention of audiences like county and state government officials and taxpayers, but also national media and government bodies. TNECD dashboards have been cited in the New York Times and The Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC) recognized TNECD’s efforts as showcasing best practices for other states.
“It’s not just about having a strategic plan that sits on a shelf somewhere,” notes Sally. “It really brings to life what we’ve set out to do and it’s visible. It helps us tell the Tennessee story of economic growth and community development.”