Make your key data visible easily with Geckoboard and Fugo CMS
Geckoboard is an incredibly easy-to-use business dashboard solution. In fact, it’s kind of their mission statement. Allowing for quick integration with a lot of the most popular solutions out there, like Github and Google Analytics, as well as being able to pull data from a wide variety of sources like Google Sheets, Excel, or even just straight from your databases, the Geckoboard platform makes it super simple to track your marketing channels, monitor sales performance, or see how you’re measuring up against your goals.
It’s so easy, in fact, that you can go from no dashboard at all, to a fully realised dashboard tracking your analytics for free within just a few minutes, and with even fewer clicks by making use of their free trial.
Getting the most out of your Geckoboard dashboard with the Fugo TV Dashboards feature
Geckoboard aims to give teams visibility of their data and to track their progress. This is why we believe the platform is a great match for the TV Dashboards feature within Fugo CMS. Building a dashboard to help visualize and track your team’s progress is all very well, but if you can’t get it in front of the key players of that team easily, you might not be getting the most out of it.
The TV Dashboards feature allows you to display your dashboard on your workplace TV screens, or any other digital signage you have connected to your Fugo account — something that empowers your team and allows them to collaborate more effectively.
We know that displaying your dashboards through a third-party application can be a double-edged sword, though; potentially opening up your private and sensitive business intelligence info to people looking to snoop on you. You can rest easy with Fugo though, because we take your security seriously, developing an innovative approach that avoids the pitfalls of many popular dashboard solutions. Our TV Dashboards feature doesn’t create a URL that anyone on the wider internet can access, and it doesn’t store your access credentials on an external device which could be lost or stolen either.
Instead, the Fugo Recorder takes notes of the steps you took to log in and get to your dashboard of choice, encrypts the steps and credentials, and stores them on a private Cloud server. When it’s time to get the freshest version of your dashboard, the Cloud server simply follows those steps, and sends a screenshot securely to the Fugo TV Dashboards feature - your details are never exposed!
Best Practices for using Geckoboard with Fugo CMS
We’re going to get into how to hook up the Fugo TV Dashboards feature with your Geckoboard dashboard in just a second, but before we do that let’s go over some recommendations and best practices that we think you should follow when connecting any third-party dashboard provider with Fugo TV Dashboards:
1. Create a service account:
We've worked hard to develop the TV dashboards feature so that your sensitive data is completely secure. But as an extra precaution, we highly recommend using a 'least privileged' service account when setting up your dashboards - this is usually an account that has read-only permissions for the dashboards you want to display on your screen(s.) You can read more about how to set up a service account with Google here.
2. Start with your dashboard URL
It's often the case that you can navigate directly to your target dashboard's URL when creating a new dashboard in Fugo. This will require you to log in, and then you’ll be redirected back to your destination. This is the quickest and most reliable journey you can make in Fugo Dashboards as it cuts out unnecessary steps in your journey.
3. Search for your dashboard
Most dashboard services have search capabilities. Instead of clicking through multiple menus, you can get to your target content quicker and more reliably by searching for it. We recommend searching the full name of the content you want to display, as partial search terms may return more items you'll have to sift through.
Connect your screens to a Fugo account
2.1 Log into your Fugo Account. If you don’t have an account yet, you can start your 14-day free trial here.
: TV Dashboards are a part of Fugo's Business Plan. During your free trial, you can create one dashboard. To create any more, you will need to upgrade your plan.
2.2 Make sure your screen(s) are connected to Fugo CMS. If you haven’t connected your screen(s) yet, you can find the instructions for that here.
Create a new dashboard
2.3 Click Dashboards in the top navigation bar to go to your Dashboard library. If you have not created any dashboards yet, this page will be empty.
2.4 Click Create Dashboard to get started. This will take you to the New Dashboard recorder page where you will follow the instructions to capture and preview your dashboard before publishing it to screen.
2.5 Now, enter the URL you log in to Geckoboard with (https://app.geckoboard.com) in the URL box, and click Go.
2.6 If this is your first time creating a TV dashboard, a popup guiding you on how to configure your Chrome browser to allow the Fugo recorder to run in incognito mode will appear. You can find our instructions for allowing incognito mode here. If this is not your first time, you can skip this step.
2.7 A new incognito window will open with the URL you entered into the field earlier. You’ll be on the Geckoboard login screen. Enter your email address and password, and log in to Geckboard as you usually would. You’ll see in the Recorded Steps section of the original Fugo window that your steps so far have been noted down by the Fugo Recorder, so that it can recreate them later.
2.8 Your last edited dashboard will load in. If this is the one you want to display, then great! If not, simply click Dashboards in the top left, and select the dashboard that you want to display from there.
💡 Geckoboard handily opens the last dashboard you were working on when you log in. It also provides a really clear and easy way to navigate to your other dashboards in the top left — with other platforms, we recommend making use of any available search functionality to navigate to the dashboard you want to display.
2.9 Once you’ve reached the dashboard you want to display, click Capture Dashboard in the bottom pane. This will capture your whole screen, and let the Fugo Recorder know that you’ve reached the end of your process and stop the recording.
💡 If you don’t want to capture the whole screen outside of the dashboard, you can use the “Element Screenshot” button instead of “Capture Dashboard”. This gives you the ability to only select a specific part to display on your workplace TV screens.
2.10 Once you’ve reached the dashboard you want to display, click Capture Dashboard in the bottom pane. This will capture your whole screen, and let the Fugo Recorder know that you’ve reached the end of your process and stop the recording. Your incognito window will close, and you’ll see a loading screen while your dashboard loads into the preview area.
2.11 When your dashboard has loaded in as expected, you can click the Publish button in the bottom right to open the Publish window, enabling you to immediately display your dashboard on any connected TV screen or digital signage. You can also use this window to insert your dashboard into any existing playlist or create a new playlist with this dashboard. Alternatively, if you want to save this for later and come back to it, simply click the Save button instead.
Tips and Tricks for your Geckoboard Dashboard
To really empower your team and get the most out of the effort you’re putting into building your dashboard and displaying it on the screens in your workplace, you need to consider how you’re building your dashboard. When you’re showing something that has the potential to be very complex, like a business intelligence dashboard, on a screen that may be reasonably small or quite far away from your viewers, you face a set of challenges that are different to what you’d face if you were just building a dashboard that people would view on their personal screens that are right in front of their faces and that they have direct control over.
Let’s take a look at a few of these challenges, and how you can overcome them:
1. Information Overload
This is the main issue you’ll face when working with not just dashboards, but any kind of business analytics. What should you look at? Which bits of information are helpful, and which bits are just noise? When you’re working with a dashboard that you’ll be displaying on a remote screen, this is even more important; you need to weed out everything that isn’t essential to your team because the screen is going to be further away and out of their control.
To combat this, before you start building your dashboard, we recommend sitting down with the team that will be viewing your dashboard and working out what their key performance indicators are, and what information is absolutely critical to them.
There are a whole lot of things to consider when you’re approaching this challenge. If you’re working with a dashboard that’s a foot away from your face on your own personal screen, you can get away with a lot more than you can when you’re working with a dashboard that’s eight feet away, on a screen on the opposite wall. For instance, you’ll want to consider the contrast between your text and your numbers, and the background of the dashboard - it’ll need to be easy to read from a distance!
You should also consider how you use colors to communicate.
For instance, most people associate green with a positive statistic, so using green to indicate a negative would be a bad choice. When you’re building your dashboard, consider making it as easy as possible to glean oversights at a glance; a lot of green on the screen should mean things are moving in the right direction, whereas seeing a mostly red screen should catch the eye and indicate to your team that they need to take another look.
On top of this, think about your numbers. Do you need eight decimal points, or can you make do with two? Decluttering your dashboard is absolutely key in getting the information across to your team in a clear and easy way.
3. Lack of Control
With a shared TV Dashboard, your team won’t have direct or immediate control over it. This can lead to it becoming redundant over time as their work evolves, because they don’t necessarily have the ability to directly update the information they’re seeing. To remedy this, and make sure your dashboard is always working as efficiently as possible, it can be helpful to check in regularly and get feedback from the team. They might find one or two things you didn’t think of, or that they didn’t think of when first planning their KPIs, over the time that they’re making use of the dashboard - and implementing their feedback gives them some control back over the dashboard they’re using.
If you want more information about best practices for business dashboard design, or some key ideas and philosophies that might inform how you approach your dashboard setup, Geckoboard have a really helpful and comprehensive Best Practices section on their website which is definitely worth a look over!
Do you have any feedback on this guide, or any further questions about the TV Dashboards feature? Drop our support team an email at firstname.lastname@example.org - we're always happy to help with any queries!