Best Practices for Designing Efficient Workbooks

A new whitepaper by Alan Eldridge, “Best Practices for Designing Efficient Workbooks,” is a joy for anyone who loves fast workbooks. And who doesn’t love fast workbooks?

Alan is one of the most qualified people in the world to write such a paper. He’s one of our best Sales Consultants and has worked with dozens of clients to roll out self-service business intelligence and yes, speed up their analytics.

This is a paper with a lot of technical information, but it’s not just for tech-heads. In his characteristic style, Alan cautions us from taking too narrow a view of “efficiency.” An efficient workbook is:

  • A workbook that takes advantage of the “principles of visual analysis” to effectively communicate the message of the author and the data, possibly by engaging the user in an interactive experience.
  • A workbook that responds in a timely fashion. This can be a somewhat subjective measure, but in general we would want the workbook to provide an initial display of information and to respond to user interactions within a couple of seconds.

If you’re not sure if you should read this paper, try this quiz.

How would you most efficiently filter to the purple dots?

  1. Keep-only the selection
  2. Exclude the rest of the dots
  3. Keep-only on the State dimension
  4. Filter by range, like lat/ long

Read the paper to get the answer. Or read it if you want to become an expert in fast workbooks-- this paper will make you one.