In this article we are going to evaluate various options for creating Excel Dash-boards. We will review the features and the most important piece “price tag”.
The ability to build dash boards using data in Excel is very important as it allows for quick prototyping, mockups, working with test data, no need to hookup production system for evaluation. Lot of small businesses cannot afford big guns to squat a fly.
Lof of dash-board vendors offer connectivity to Excel but they don’t have any publicly listed pricing on the license cost. We skipped those vendors and our search narrowed down the following vendors. Again the pricing figures are pulled directly from their websites at the time this article was written. We make no guarantee or stand by any of the pricing we list here. The price below is for reference and your convenience.
NOTE: If you think there is another vendor offering Excel Dashboarding feature, please let us know. We need the pricing information in order to list them.
Tableau Software – Desktop Personal Edition – $900
The Personal Edition is a visual analysis and reporting solution for data stored in Excel, MS Access or Text Files. Tableau provides rich visualization and has wide variety of charts to represent your Excel data.
Sisense – PrismCubed Personal edition $300/year
Sisense uses ‘in-memory’ techniques for fast query and data fetching.
Excel Dashboard – Personal Edition – $47
InfoCaptor – Small Business Dashboard (Excel + Access) – $97
All Data – sources – $300
This is part of the InfoCaptor family and uses Visual Query builder to build dashboard components such as parameters, tables and charts.
Talking to number of users, “What are the top few things you expect from Dashboard software”
Here are some responses in order of priority
- Easy to Build – Visual development and less or no coding at all
- Export to PDF – in order to distribute dashboards
- Auto-Refresh – This is more for live databases but useful if you are fetching and refreshing your excel data regularly.
And last but not the least, “Price TAG”. All of the above options are extremely economical. Our theory is, the vendors that don’t list their price on their websites want to charge you more depending on number of users, provide consulting, charge for training and some like “Oracle” charge on per CPU basis. You think its ridiculous, right? But lot of these big vendors have established pricing models and the people buying their stuff are comfortable only with that kind of pricing.
Anyway we are not here to discuss them, its about you. All of the above three options are perfect. You got to decide which one is right for you.