In today’s post, I want to share a simple / not incredibly useful app that I use very often as a QlikView trainer. In my courses, I like to guide most of the exercises step by step and give tips and tricks as we encounter new functions or objects. However, some exercises have better results when working alone, especially when working with charts. For example, when I present themes, containers, tabs and auto-minimize I like to give the students a few minutes to decide the way their applications would look like.
In the beginning, I used to tell them the approximate time that we were going to spend on the exercise and the expected finish hour. As you can imagine, nobody kept an eye on the clock and we always had delays, so one day I created this application. [Download]
The idea is to store the expected time for the exercise in a variable using an input box and after clicking START, the gauge in the right would represent the remaining time using the function now(). When the clock hits the “Red Zone” (another variable), the gauge turns red.
As simple as it may look, when I use it, almost all the students finish on time. This is a little reminder of the influence of good visual representations in the decision-makers. Even if the data is the same, when we work with different formats and representations, our brain usually goes in different directions as well.
In this situation, all the students could make the appropriate calculations:
Current time [11:20 AM] + Exercise time [20 min] = Finish time [11:40 AM]
They also knew that by 11:35 AM the exercise should be almost finished, waiting only for the last details. However, it is easier to keep track of your status (the time remaining) with a graphical representation like a gauge. I would say it is the same when you work with business KPIs, so do not underestimate the impact of visual cues and the usage of the correct charts for each situation.
By the way, I don’t know if I’m the only one… but I can’t read the word “countdown” without this soundtrack in my head
Any thoughts? Leave a comment in the section below!