What is an Executive Dashboard for Manufacturing Companies?

Executive dashboards are considered KPI monitoring tools for senior leaders and are used by Executives and board members to analyze financial and operational metrics. Some of the main functionality in this type of dashboard is that it provides seven different analytical perspectives. These include: Actual, budget and variance for monthly revenues, 2) Actual, budget and variance for monthly cost of sales (COGS), 3) Monthly revenue trend for actuals and budgets, 4) Cost of sales trend for actuals and budgets, 5) Top 5 selling products, 6) Top 5 customers, and 7) Top 5 suppliers. The user can choose year with the buttons on the top of the dashboard. You find an example of this type of dashboard below.

Purpose of Executive Dashboards

Manufacturing companies use Executive Dashboards to give leaders an easy way to monitor the most important areas of the business. When used as part of good business practices in Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) departments, an organization can improve and speed up its strategies, and it can reduce the chances that executives make slow or poor decisions because they don’t have access to real time information.

Example of a Executive Dashboard

Here is an example of an Executive Dashboard for a manufacturing company.

Example of an Executive Dashboard for Manufacturing Companies

Example of an Executive Dashboard for Manufacturing Companies

You can find hundreds of additional examples here

Who Uses This Type of Dashboard?

The typical users of this type of dashboard are: Executives and Board Members.

Other Reports Often Used in Conjunction with Executive Dashboards

Progressive Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) departments sometimes use several different Executive Dashboards, along with profit & loss reports, balance sheets, cash flow statements, sales dashboards and other management and control tools.

Where Does the Data for Analysis Originate From?

The Actual (historical transactions) data typically comes from enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems like: Microsoft Dynamics 365 (D365) Finance, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (D365 BC), Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics SL, Sage Intacct, Sage 100, Sage 300, Sage 500, Sage X3, SAP Business One, SAP ByDesign, Acumatica, Netsuite and others.

In analyses where budgets or forecasts are used, the planning data most often originates from in-house Excel spreadsheet models or from professional corporate performance management (CPM/EPM) solutions.

What Tools are Typically used for Reporting, Planning and Dashboards?

Examples of business software used with the data and ERPs mentioned above are:

  • Native ERP report writers and query tools
  • Spreadsheets (for example Microsoft Excel)
  • Corporate Performance Management (CPM) tools (for example Solver)
  • Dashboards (for example Microsoft Power BI and Tableau)

Corporate Performance Management (CPM) Cloud Solutions and More Examples