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Everything You Need To Know About Static, Dynamic & Real Time Reporting

Static vs dynamic reports by datapineIn the digital age, great businesses are founded on great insight — the data-driven kind. Without access to valuable business data, regardless of your niche and sector, you’ll merely be shooting in the dark when making key commercial decisions.

But data is only valuable if you know how to handle it effectively.

With so many digital insights available in our hyper-connected age of information, a  professional report tool is the most effective means of collecting, curating, organizing, and analyzing your most valuable business data.

To help you understand data-driven reporting and propel your business to the next level, we’re going to explore the difference between static reports and dynamic reports.

In addition to exploring the difference between static and dynamic, we will also look at 2 working dynamic reports examples.

Let’s get started.

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What Is Static Reporting?

A static report offers a snapshot of trends, data, and information over a predetermined period to provide insight and serve as a decision-making guide. After initial use, a static report is usually filed away and used for the purposes of historical data analysis.

Static reports are those that include static information relating to a specific area of business, from inventory to sales, customer service, and beyond.

These traditional reports are generated in Excel, Word, or PowerPoint and exported into HTML or PDF format. While static reporting is a reliable source of information, there is no scope to drill down further into the insights displayed on them, meaning that these informational documents have a short shelf life.

We’ve explored our static report definition in greater detail. Now, it’s time to take a look at our dynamic or real time reporting definition.

What Is Dynamic & Real Time Reporting?

Dynamic (or real time) reports offer 24/7 access to the most up to date information while enabling the user to interact with data through functionalities such as interactive features and other capabilities in order to conduct basic and advanced analysis of data.

Most dynamic real time reporting software is powered, to some extent, by machine learning (ML) capabilities, meaning that it’s insightful, intuitive, and enables you to use your data as a past, predictive, and live decision-making resource.

As a result of their interactive nature, dynamic reporting dashboards also help businesses become more responsive to unexpected issues or sudden changes in direction by gaining quick-fire access to visual data as it unfolds—a priceless capability regardless of your industry.

Dynamic vs. Static Reports: What’s The Difference?

We’ve offered a clearcut real time reporting definition and touched on the value of real time reporting tools. Now, it’s time to dig a little deeper by pinpointing the difference between static and dynamic reports.

It’s clear that dynamic reporting offer a greater level of depth than those of the static variety, with functionality that allows users to interact with the insights before them rather than merely viewing them on-page. A KPI reporting software can even automate and offer the most recent data in all your reports.

While real time reporting tools offer a seemingly endless level of scope for improving decision-making and fostering a culture of business intelligence (BI), static or traditional reporting methods are worth archiving for historical performance reference. In short, we shouldn’t rule our traditional reporting techniques completely, but we should acknowledge that they are somewhat antiquated in our tech-driven digital age.

Let’s further clarify the key differences between static and real time reporting.

Dynamic vs. static reporting:

  • Cohesion: As static-style reports offer a snapshot of data, in order to examine and analyze insights from a longer timeframe, it’s necessary to pull up multiple reports from different sources, causing fragmentation and consuming hours of time sifting through information. As your average dynamic reporting tool consolidates relevant data in one central location, comparing insights and viewing metrics from broad timelines is quick, intuitive, and designed for swift decision-making, whether you need to create a finance report for your department or the entire organization.
  • Accessibility: It is possible to export static report data into various formats and share these insights digitally, but the process is fairly manual and takes time. It also leaves more room for error. With dynamic data reports, users can log into a dashboard from anywhere across multiple devices for instant insight and analysis.
  • Digestibility: Every robust dynamic reporting tool offers a multitude of stimulating visuals based on clearcut key performance indicators. As humans, we respond far more effectively to visual stimulation than text-based information, which means that interactive reporting makes data and dashboard storytelling more effective. This, in turn, produces more powerful, business-boosting results. As static data is more text-centric and devoid of interactive functionality, extracting insights is a slower, more laborious process.
  • Scalability: Static data provides value for a short time as reports of this nature are set in stone. However, interactive reports are customizable both in terms of content and functionality, which means it’s possible to tweak and improve them over time, allowing you to remain responsive to the commercial landscape around you as you evolve and grow — scalability guaranteed.

Now that we’ve explored dynamic vs. static reports, we will take a closer look at real industry examples.

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Essential Dynamic Reporting Examples

We’ve explored the key differences between two of the world’s most powerful business reporting types. Now, it’s time to look at two quite different but equally inspiring dynamic reports examples—starting with our financial KPI dashboard.

1. Financial KPI dashboard

Dynamic report example from the finance department depicting the current working capital, cash conversion cycle, and vendor payment error rate, among other important financial KPIs.

**Click here to open the dashboard in full-screen mode**

Primary KPIs:

  • Working Capital
  • Quick Ratio / Acid Test
  • Cash Conversion Cycle
  • Vendor Payment Error Rate
  • Budget Variance

When you create dynamic reports, it’s important to work with a balanced mix of KPIs and visuals. The financial dashboard above is a testament to that notion.

With five key performance indicators that apply to almost every industry and sector, the dynamic real time data provided within this report includes all of the financial analytics information required to answer critical monetary questions based on liquidity, invoicing, budgeting, and the general financial stability of your business. From current assets to working capital, it’s possible to gain an up-to-the-moment insight of all critical financial performance data while drilling down into specific metrics with ease.

For monitoring your financial health while gaining the intelligence required to improve internal processes and fix inefficiencies, this interactive reporting tool is second to none. A powerful financial tool that scales seamlessly with business growth.

If you want to tackle deeper into the financial health of your organization, you can explore our rich library full of financial KPIs.

2. Sales & order dashboard

Dynamic reporting example created with a software illustrating the perfect order rate, total number of orders, return reasons, and top sellers by orders.

**Click here to open the dashboard in full-screen mode**

Primary KPIs:

  • Total Orders
  • Total Sales by Region
  • Order Status
  • Perfect Order Rate
  • Return Reason

 “Data is what you need to do analytics. Information is what you need to do business.” – John Owen

The retail sector is fast, furious, and rife with competition. Regardless of your niche or what you’re selling, gaining access to dynamic live insights is essential if you want to get ahead of the pack and stay there.

Our sales & order overview is interactive, engaging, visually balanced, and equipped with all of the ingredients for growth and success in the retail sector.

This retail dashboard has five focused key performance indicators geared towards improving your fulfillment processes, handling orders more efficiently, and understanding any customer-facing issues with your service or products.

By gaining access to this depth of dynamic information, you stand to make your retail analytics more productive, more efficient, and more profitable. For ambitious retailers, interactive reports don’t get any better.

“It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data.” – Sherlock Holmes, “A Study in Scarlet” (Arthur Conan Doyle)

Exclusive Bonus Content: Get our free summary to create better reports!
Download our bite-sized guide and learn everything you need to know!

Now that you’re well versed in the power of data analysis, you’ll be able to create dynamic reports that will help your business become bigger, better, and stronger than ever before. No matter if you need to track call center metrics or create stunning visualizations, these reports will boost your bottom line and provide you with the most accurate data available.

In the Age of Information, we’re swimming in digital data, and it’s those who embrace its power today that will survive and even thrive tomorrow.

It’s true that static reporting offers some value—they are based on critical business data, after all. But to squeeze every last drop of value from the information available at your fingertips, dynamic reporting is the way forward.

Dynamic reporting tools will empower you to dig deeper into the information that you know offers genuine value to your business, interacting with it in a way that will open your eyes to a world of business-boosting opportunities that you never knew existed. Dynamic data will help you make better decisions, develop narratives that will help others in your organization do their jobs better, and make your business more responsive to change. All this will catalyze your success for years to come—and surely, that’s the aim of the game, isn’t it?

To ensure you start with your own dynamic reporting practice which is intuitive and easy to digest, we offer a 14-day trial, completely free! Start building your reports with just a few clicks and see how dashboards and smart modern tools benefit your bottom line!

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