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Fine-Tune Your Charts with QPR ProcessAnalyzer 2019.7

Sep 24, 2019 / by Sakari Lapinsuo    |    5 min read

QPR ProcessAnalyzer comes with a good bunch of out-of-the-box functionalities, some more basic, some more advanced. One of the most powerful components of the product is what’s called the ChartView. ChartView is a UI component that’s used as a building block for dashboards. This is your go-to tool when you want more control over how to present your process mining based findings. In other words, you pull it out when the other components in the tool don’t give you just exactly what you want to communicate.

The key element of ChartView is the KPI Designer with which even an Excel white-belt will produce a chart to be impressed at. QPR ProcessAnalyzer version 2019.7 includes a couple of enhancements to the Designer:

  1. You can edit a custom expression measures or dimensions in a separate editor window
  2. You can customize the chart layout using JSON (also in a separate window)

Let’s go through an example for each of these. 

Custom expressions for measures and dimensions

The KPI Designer functionality is spread out under three tabs: General, Measures, and Dimensions. 

kpi-designer

Dimensions are used for slicing your data, e.g. by regions or by time. Measures are KPIs calculated for each of the slices, for instance volumes, lead times, or automation rates.

Under Measures, for each Measure, you can choose from a long list of predefined items, such as “Case count”, “Case duration”, or “Event attribute (date)”. If what you’re looking to present cannot be realized with any of these items, you can now select “Custom expression”. 

custom-expression

Once selected, an “Edit” button will appear that opens up the custom expression editor.

1st-measure

In this example, let’s say we want to calculate the average cost of all cases in our data. As there’s not a predefined “Average” measure, we’ll need to define it in the expression editor using the QPR ProcessAnalyzer expression language. Without going into the details of the expression language syntax, the expression is as simple as “Average(_.Cost)”. Typing that into the expression editor and clicking “Ok” will bring you back to the KPI Designer Measures tab. Next, you’ll need to change the Measure’s “Data type” to “Number” in order to get the corresponding column drawn in the ChartView chart:

chartview-1

Ok, let’s now add a dimension. Within the “Dimensions” tab, select “Case attribute” under “X-axis”. Then, select “Region”. You’ll now see the average cost of all cases by region.

chartview-2

As the final step, let’s say we need to increase the cost of all cases that occur in Dallas by a multiplier of 1.5 – and compare the result with the original costs. We’d then add a second measure with the following custom expression:

Average(_.if(_.Region=="Dallas",_.Cost*1.5,_.Cost))

chartview-3

You’ll notice that the green column in Dallas is 1.5 times higher than the blue one.

Chart layout customization

In a similar fashion, you can get granular control over the styling of ChartView charts by clicking “Edit Custom Layout” under the “General” tab of the KPI Designer. ChartView uses the comprehensive Highcharts API through JSON.

Let’s continue from where we left off in the previous example. Suppose you need to use company colors for the chart’s columns instead of blue and green. If you copy-paste the below JSON into the Custom Layout editor and click “OK”, the column colors will change.

{
  "series": [
    {
      "color": " #ff0000"
    },
    {
      "color": " #000000"
    }
  ]
}

chartview-5

Similarly, you can change hundreds of chart related settings through the API, such as export options, data labels, annotations, spacing, and captions. In case you want to view the current effective JSON settings, select “Show chart JSON settings” in the last dropdown menu under the “General” tab.

chartview-4

Conclusion

In a nutshell, QPR ProcessAnalyzer 2019.7 will give its users more control over presentation. Here I’ve described two new ways to modify charts in the out-of-the-box ChartView view: 1) Through the expression editor under Measures in the KPI Designer of the ChartView component, and 2) Through the Custom Layout Editor.

As seen in the above screenshots, the ChartView view includes a flowchart presentation object on the left-hand side and the ChartView presentation object on the right-hand side. In other words, ChartView is really a presentation object (or, a component) that can be used in any custom views you create –  not just the predefined ChartView view.

 

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Topics: Process Mining, QPR ProcessAnalyzer, ChartView

Sakari Lapinsuo
Written by Sakari Lapinsuo

Sakari is currently immersed in the world of process management and process mining with a marketing angle. His background is in electrical engineering which he has later complemented with a business degree. Sakari is a technology enthusiast who regularly organizes either skiing trips to the Alps or sailing holidays in the Mediterranean.