S5: Visualization: The Last Step on the Path from Raw Data to Management Decisions
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  Michael Scofield   Michael Scofield
Scofield Data Consulting


Thursday, May 1, 2014
01:15 PM - 04:30 PM

Level:  Intermediate

Decision-makers often ask for “data”, but what they really want is information which will help them understand a problem or a condition around the decisions they need to make. Yet they often do not know what data is available, what it is called, and how they might want that data or derived information expressed. Moving from high volumes of granular business data (especially transactions) to decision-able information which an executive can “steer the ship” by, involves a number of steps of aggregation, normalization, filtering, etc. Most decision-makers respond more favorably to graphic expression of business conditions and activity.

This workshop explores a wide variety of charting and graphic techniques with attention to which are appropriate for what kind of analysis. This presentation includes a “rogue’s gallery” of really bad (if not misleading) charts which we will analyze and discuss how they can be improved. We will also explore other graphic techniques to visually express a wide range of abstract concepts and business processes.

You will learn:

  • The important difference between categorical and linear dimensions
  • Which charts are appropriate for what kinds of data
  • The role of normalization to eliminate other factors
  • The importance of clarity and full-disclosure of conditions, filters, etc.
  • How cultural sequencers can bring consistency to management reporting

Michael Scofield has been an Assistant Professor in Health Information Management at Loma Linda University in the Department of Health Information Management. He is a frequent speaker to a variety of professional and general audiences on topics of data management, data quality, data warehouse design, and data visualization.

His career has included education and private industries in the areas of data quality, decision-support systems, data warehousing, and data management. His articles appear in DM Review, the B-Eye Newsletter, InformationWeek magazine, the IBI Systems Journal, and other professional journals. He also has humor published in the L.A. Times and other journals.

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