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An Introduction to SuccessFactors Dashboards 2.0 Reports

by Pablo Stuardo, SuccessFactors Senior Consultant, Ernst & Young

November 8, 2016

Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality is a feature in the SuccessFactors suite that allows users to report data in charts. Dashboards 2.0 Reports replaced the legacy Dashboards 1.0 feature in Q4 2016; after this release, users cannot access Dashboards 1.0. Therefore, is it important to understand more about Dashboards 2.0 Reports and how to use them.

In addition to reporting data and getting all the records from different reporting tools within the SuccessFactors platform, organizations also have a critical need to be able to present the data in charts. Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality allows you to accomplish this. In this first installment of a two-part series of articles about Dashboards 2.0 Reports, get an introduction to this innovative functionality. In addition, I discuss some of the most popular use cases for using them. In the second article of this series, I cover the details about everything a user needs to know about creating Dashboards 2.0 Reports and sharing them with key people in an organization.

Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality is an extremely high visibility tool that is used not only by SuccessFactors administrators but also by executives and other general users. With Dashboards 2.0 Reports, you can complete tasks such as leveraging data from different SuccessFactors modules, putting dashboards into users’ homepages, and making dashboards that are mobile enabled. By reading this article, you will learn and understand exactly what Dashboards 2.0 Reports are, how to get them, and how this innovative functionality can help add even more value to your organization. I also provide you with some use cases that exemplify the benefits of Dashboards 2.0 Reports.

(Note: To enable Dashboards 2.0 Reports, if they are not already enabled, contact your SuccessFactors representative, customer support, or your SuccessFactors partner.)

An Overview of Dashboards 2.0 Reports

Dashboards 2.0 is a high-visibility tool that replaces the legacy Dashboards 1.0. The main purpose of the general dashboard functionality in SuccessFactors is to allow users to see and report data from different modules in different charts that better visualize the data.

(Note: In Q4 2016 (November 2016 for early test environments and December 2016 for production environments), Dashboards 2.0 Reports fully replaces the legacy Dashboards 1.0. An in-depth discussion of the key differences between the two reporting frameworks is outside the scope of this article and, in my opinion, does not add much value, since Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality is a whole new technology compared with legacy Dashboard s 1.0. In this article, the focus is on Dashboards 2.0 Reports.)

With Dashboards 2.0 Reports two types of dashboards are available: standard tile-based dashboards and custom tile-based dashboards.

(Note: The standard tile-based dashboard functionality is preconfigured and comes with the SuccessFactors suite. The tile format cannot be modified in any way. On the other hand, the custom tile-based dashboard is 100-percent customized, which means that the administrator has full control over the data that needs to be reported and how it is displayed.) 

It is important to mention that regardless of which type of tile (standard or custom) you use, the functionality is the same, which means that there are no additional features (or different types or look of the data) offered by using the standard tiles.

Before digging deeper into Dashboards 2.0 Reports, let’s look at Figures 1 and 2 to see what the legacy Dashboards 1.0 (shown in Figure 1) looked like compared with Dashboards 2.0 Reports (in Figure 2). As you can see, the Dashboard 2.0 Reports option represents a major change to the SuccessFactors Dashboards capabilities.

Figure 1
The Legacy Dashboards 1.0 screen

Figure 2
The Dashboards 2.0 screen

SuccessFactors Dashboards 2.0 Use Cases

Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality is evolving very quickly. This means that with almost every quarterly release, the user interface (UI) is improved, the availability of standard tiles options increases, and the data that can be reported by Dashboards 2.0 Reports expands. The most popular and widely used Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionalities are related to performance management and objective management.

Some of the most popular use cases are goals (objectives) status, form status, and employee ratings status (i.e., if employees are above or below their expected ratings). In the following section, I give a brief overview of each. 

The Goals Status Dashboard

In this example, you are approaching Q4 of the year—the last stretch to finish the year on a strong note. The executives and managers would like to see the overall status of the goals (objectives) in their hierarchy and for their team. They would like this data to be displayed visually, as charts, rather than as bulk data that potentially needs to be massaged in Excel. Using just a few clicks, you can do this by using the Objectives by Completion functionality of Dashboards 2.0 Reports, as shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3
Objectives by Completion report using Dashboards 2.0 Reports

This dashboard is the graphical representation of the objectives’ statuses report. It shows whether they are completed, overdue, not yet due, or if there is no due data.

By clicking the chart itself (in this case, the pie chart in yellow and red), you can see the details of the data that created the result (i.e., the chart) displayed at the bottom of the screen. (In this case, the dashboard is reporting on the status of the performance forms.) You can export this data to Excel or in comma-separated value (CSV) format by clicking the CSV or Excel option on the left side of the screen.

The Form Status Grouped by Workflow Dashboard

In this example, you are approaching the end of the performance review cycle, and the HR business partners need to understand how far away the user population is in terms of finishing their performance reviews. You can calculate and show this easily by using the employee’s performance form status dashboard, shown in Figure 4.

Figure 4
The Form Status dashboard display

The dashboard in Figure 4 displays the status—in which step of the route map (workflow)—the form is. Just as you did to display the details for the chart in Figure 3, click the image in the dashboard to display the data details at the bottom of the screen in Figure 4. You can also export the data into Excel or CSV format by clicking one of these options.

The Employees Above or Below Expected Ratings Dashboard

In this example, the manager wants to understand where his or her team is in terms of their ratings per competency, and their expected ratings for each of the team member’s position. For this, you can use the Employees Above or Below Expected Rating functionality of the Competency Dashboard (Figure 5).

Figure 5
The display of ratings for team members based on competencies and positions

These three dashboard examples (shown in Figures 3 through 5) are probably the most commonly used, and they are only a few of the chart options offered. The options that are available for creating visual displays of your data using Dashboards 2.0 Reports are only limited by your imagination. (As a general rule, if the data is available to be reported [e.g., is available in ad-hoc reports], it is available for Dashboards 2.0 Reports.)

A Brief Overview on How to Upgrade to Dashboards 2.0 Reports

At this point, you are probably wondering how to get the Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality up and running in your SuccessFactors system. Good news—first of all, Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality comes with the basic SuccessFactors license, which means that if your company is already using SuccessFactors, you already have access to it, without any additional cost. Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality also is available in the Upgrade Center so that your SuccessFactors administrator can enable it from there.

(Note: The details about the Upgrade Center and enabling new functionality in SuccessFactors are outside of the scope of this article. However, in this section, I provide general instructions for accessing the Upgrade Center to upgrade to Dashboards 2.0 Reports.)

Log in to your SuccessFactors system and go to the Admin Center, as shown in Figure 6

Figure 6
Log in to the SuccessFactors Home page

Once in the Admin Center, you see a tile on the right named Upgrade Center (Figure 7). Click it to display the screen in Figure 8.

Figure 7
The Admin Center Home page where you select the Upgrade Center tile (and later, the Manage Permission Roles option)

Figure 8
The SuccessFactors Upgrade Center

Once in the Upgrade Center, look under the Important Upgrades section to see all the new upgrades, including the Dashboards 2.0 upgrade option. (Once Dashboard s 2.0 Reports functionality has been enabled via the Upgrade Center, just like anything in SuccessFactors, it requires authorization to manage and access it.)

Role-Based Permissions and Authorizations

As you might already know, Role-Based Permissions is the framework used in the SuccessFactors system to control the security structure. The functionality of Dashboards 2.0 Reports must be permissioned in Role-Based Permissions for it to be used (e.g., this means you have total control over who gets to create and manage Dashboards 2.0 Reports). To permission Dashboards 2.0 Reports functionality, follow these instructions.

Back in the SuccessFactors Home page (Figure 6), follow the menu path in the drop-down menu under your username > Admin Center, which opens the screen in Figure 7. This time, select the Set User Permissions option under Manage Employees, and then select Manage Permission Roles. This opens the screen in Figure 9, which gives you access to manage permission roles.

Figure 9
The role-based permissions screen

Click the System Admin option on the left, and the Permission settings pop-up window in Figure 10 opens.

Figure 10
The Permission settings pop-up window

Select the role to which you would like to give access to manage Dashboards 2.0 Reports. In this case, I select the System Admin role. In the pop-up that opens in Figure 10, under Administrator Permissions, select Manage Dashboards / Reports. The screen on the right expands and shows the permission options. Select the Analytics Tiles and Dashboards check box and then click the Done button.

You are now ready to manage Dashboards 2.0 Reports.

(Note: All the other permissions you see under Manage Dashboards / Reports in Figure 10 control different reporting capabilities in SuccessFactors. These additional permissions are not part of the scope for this article.)

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Pablo Stuardo

Pablo Stuardo is a SuccessFactors Senior Consultant at Ernst & Young. He focuses on the entire SAP SuccessFactors suite and has supported and implemented a wide variety of projects for different clients at a global level. A native Chilean, Pablo is fluent in Spanish, and graduated from Georgia State University’s Robinson College of Business with a dual degree in Computer Information Systems and Finance.


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