Introduction to Data Visualisation and Storytelling

This course provides attendees the knowledge and experience to create compelling data visualisations and data stories your business users love to use.

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      This course provides attendees the knowledge and experience to create data visualisations and data stories your business users will not only love but also rely on to make better business decisions.

      The success of an analytics system is judged by the value it provides to the business users it was designed to support. Those business users, to a large degree, judge the value and trustworthiness of the analytics system on the quality of the user interface they interact with. While the analytics platform an organisation chooses plays some part in the business users’ assessment, most of their assessment is based on the usefulness and usability of the data visualisations and dashboards displayed by the platform.

      An organisation could have created the most complete and accurate analytics system possible and chosen the most suitable data visualisation platform available, but if the data visualisations and data stories created by analysts are poor and do not help the business users make better decisions the entire project will be considered a failure by the business.

      This workshop provides attendees with knowledge of and practical experience with the best practices for the design and development of data visualisations and data stories that business users will trust, use and value.

      Key Topics

      • Data Visualisation and Analytics
      • Data visualisation principles
      • Dat Visualisation Design Process
      • Data Storytelling Principles
      • Exercise: Create a Data Visualisation and Data Story
      • Data Visualisation and Data Story Presentations and Feedback

      Learning Objectives

      Participants completing this workshop will be able to:

      • Use knowledge of human visual and thinking processes to guide the design of attractive and effective data visualisations and data stories
      • Explain how data visualisations and data stories support analytics and data-driven decision making
      • Choose the correct form to communicate data and information simply, clearly and accurately to business users
      • Apply best practice design principles to the design of data visualisations and data stories
      • Use decision-driven design and evolutionary development to create data visualisations and data stories that are useful for business users
      • Interact with business users to gather the correct requirements for data visualisation and data stories

      Topic Outline

      Data Visualisation and Analytics

      • What is analytics?
      • What is data visualisation?
      • What role do data visualisations play in analytics?

      Data visualisation principles

      • Data: The ingredients of any data visualisation
      • How people perceive and interpret data visualisations
      • Use the “Gestalt” principles of perception to attract and focus user attention
      • Tables or graphs: When should each be used?
      • The eight main quantitative relationships communicated by data visualisations
      • Best practices for table design
      • Best practices for chart design


      • Choosing the correct graphs
      • Review and suggest improvements for data visualisations

      Data visualisation and data story design and development process

      • How does the BI and analytics user, developer and system interact?
      • The decision-driven design approach
      • Gathering requirements for data visualisation
      • The evolutionary development method
      • The data visualisation design process

      Data Storytelling

      • When to tell a data story and when not to
      • The elements of a data story
      • How to tell a data story


      • Create data visualisations and a short data story to meet a specific business problem.
      • Present (5-10 minutes) the data story to the business user.
      • Receive feedback on the choice and design of the data visualisations, and content and structure of the data story.

      Target Audience

      This workshop is intended for people in organisations whose role is responsible for producing data visualisations, dashboards and data stories to communicate quantitative information. These people may be BI and analytics developers, data scientists or self-service BI and analytics users. This workshop is also suitable for people who manage BI and analytics developers, so they can better understand the content their team creates and the processes their teams should follow.

      The type of roles who would benefit from attending this workshop are:

      • Business Intelligence Designer / Analyst / Developer
      • Reporting Designer / Analyst / Developer
      • Data Scientist
      • Data Analyst
      • Finance Analyst
      • Financial / Management Accountant
      • Business Intelligence and Analytics Manager
      • Business Intelligence and Analytics Architect
      • Users of Self-Service Business Intelligence Tools
      • Commercial Graphic Artist


      This workshop is technology independent. The focus is on learning and applying the principles of data visualisation, and data storytelling. No knowledge of a particular data visualisation software platform is required.

      A basic familiarity with computers and the use of data and data visualisation in a business context is required.