Case study:

Data analysis and reporting dashboard creation

Digitalization shouldn’t just copy paper processes.

A commercial diagnostic laboratory in Ohio added immense value for its industrial customers by not only testing samples from their equipment but also providing expert interpretation of the results. These potentially game-changing reports, however, were delivered via snail mail and were … dense and confusing. Back in 2006, the laboratory decided to up its game by going digital. Just one glitch: not all digital reports are created equal.

Challenge

In hindsight the main challenge was simply that it was 2006. People’s desktops were full of widgets, e-commerce was just starting to go mobile and wireless internet was all the rage. The commercial lab had the smarts to get in on the technology boom early, which was an excellent business move. The downside was that the lab didn’t really know how to approach digitizing its reports and recommendations. 

 

The lab’s internal effort resulted in providing customers with an online link to their reports, which was essentially just a digital copy of the paper report. 

 

“Our customers had all their data faster now, but still didn’t know what to do with it,” said Larry, a customer service coordinator at the lab. “We wanted to provide the test data, sure, but also tools to help them understand it and make quick decisions based on the data.”

The new reporting tool had to:

  • Directly import data from the lab information management system (LIMS)

  • Be simple for customers to use and navigate

  • Generate customizable reports that offered at-a-glance insight 

  • Provide data-backed recommendations for equipment maintenance

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– Larry, Customer Service Coordinator, Commercial Diagnostic Laboratory

On Now Digital helped us use customer and employee feedback to develop a tool that’s intuitive, customizable and contains features no one else has – making it a true differentiator in our market.

Method

The lab enlisted On Now Digital to develop an online analysis and reporting tool. After reviewing the requirements, we recommended creating a customer portal platform rather than improving the digital reports the lab was sending to customers. This way, the customer’s test data could be housed in one place and referenced in real time – at any time. 

 

Additionally, we suggested a data dashboard so that customers could see their test data in a visual format (color-coded charts and graphs) for easy interpretation of current test results, historical data, performance trends and maintenance planning recommendations. By following this approach, the lab became the first in its industry to offer a customer portal and dashboard. While competitors tried to follow suit, their solutions were lacking. 

 

“The dashboard is more user-friendly than anything else I’ve seen,” said Larry. “Reports from other companies look like a glorified spreadsheet. Ours is intuitive and has so many extra features. Essentially, it’s like having an engineer in your back pocket.” 

A key to the dashboard’s success is continuous improvement – the platform is currently on Version 7.0. Each year, On Now Digital meets with the lab to identify and prioritize new features. 

Impact

In addition to accomplishing its original aims, the lab has:

  • Improved data integrity. Since all test data is automatically synced to the dashboard, the latest, most accurate information is always available.

  • Reduced turnaround time. Test results are published in real time, meaning customers no longer have to wait for reports.

  • Saved money. The lab saves tens of thousands of dollars each year – achieved through both internal cost savings and eliminating the expenses of printing and postage.

  • Maintained its industry-leading position. The continuous addition of new, useful dashboard features helps the lab attract and retain customers.

Takeaways for your business

Trust on On Now Digital to:

  • Develop custom applications to meet your unique needs

  • Continuously improve tools based on customer feedback

  • Offer intuitive, easy-to-use solutions

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Are you struggling to figure out the best way to analyze and report data? We can help.