Being Data Driven: Visualizing program data to aid stakeholder comprehension and decision-making in the TESSA project.
Purpose: Programs within the community gather large volumes of raw data on their target populations. Representing these data to stakeholders in a presentable format and customized to suit their varying needs poses a challenge. Data visualization may help streamline complex datasets for audiences. The Technology Enhanced Screening and Supportive Assistance (TESSA) project serves primary care clinics and interpersonal violence agencies in Tarrant County with a tablet-based screening and health advocacy component. The objective of this project is to determine the effectiveness of data dashboards for stakeholder decision-making from clinics and agencies. Methods: Data obtained from the TESSA project were visualized into dashboards using the software Tableau. Two dashboards were created based on the sources from which they were obtained (Computerized Intervention Authoring Software [CIAS] and FileMakerPro). These dashboards were then presented to the respective stakeholders from seven organizations and/or health systems for iterative feedback and also to aid in decision-making (e.g., referral process, client needs). Results: The two dashboards started with a baseline of what the evaluation team deemed necessary at the onset. The FileMakerPro dashboard details the interpersonal violence agency data and the health advocate encounters. The FileMakerPro dashboard went through multiple iterations based on stakeholder feedback before culminating in the current version. The CIAS dashboard, which details the primary care clinic data, had to be modified with a password protected feature to allow clinics to have online accessibility. The CIAS dashboards are also customized according to the individual clinics. Conclusion: Data visualization in the form of dashboards have helped influence stakeholder decision-making in the TESSA project. These findings are evident from the multiple iterative processes and feedback received from the stakeholders regarding the respective dashboards. Data visualization serves as an essential tool in breaking down complex streams of data into more digestible formats for community collaborators.