A Detailed Guide to Build a Tearsheet Dashboard

Created by Venturelytic Team, Modified on Wed, 31 Jan 2024 at 09:40 AM by Venturelytic Team

At Venturelytic, we recognize the need for funds to have clear and efficient access to their investment data. Tearsheets provide a straightforward and detailed overview of portfolio company performance, offering essential insights in a concise format. These tearsheets are designed to help our clients quickly understand a portfolio company's latest performance, facilitating better decision-making. Ideal for internal analysis and reporting, Venturelytic’s tearsheet are a practical tool for funds managing multiple investments. 

In the series below, we provide you with a step by step breakdown of how to create a Tearsheet dashboard yourself consisting of multiple Venturelytic components. 

Step 1: The Basics

Before we start, it is important to realize the function of both Salesforce reports and dashboards. Dashboards are basically visualizations of multiple reports. This means that reports are the basis of every dashboard, and it also implies that the dashboard can only show information that is stored in a report. As a result, users have to think carefully about the filters they apply to both reports and dashboards. If the filters applied to a report, are too narrow, the required information will not be visible in a dashboard. Vice versa, if the report lacks filters, the dashboard filters are not always sufficient to filter out the information needed in the report. Venturelytic advices you to review the filters applied to both reports and dashboards to make sure the information shown in the dashboard is correct.

With this information in mind, users can start building up a dashboard by clicking on the "+ Widget" button on the top right.

Step 2: Add a Company Profile

Readers quickly need to know which company is presented in the tearsheet. For that reason, it is logical to add a generic component on top of your tearsheet containing company information. Generic company information is often stored on the Account object. This implicates that you'll need an Account-based report to get company information to appear in your dashboard. Check whether there is already exists an Account report with company information. If not, create one yourself. In the example below, the Account Profile report was used. 

First, use the "+ Widget" button to add a report. Next, determine the visualization method. In this case, we use a table form.

Eventually, double check whether the table looks as you want. 

For a video on the outlined steps, see: 

Step 3: Add your first Dashboard Filter

As mentioned in step 1, it is important to determine the filter you want to apply to your dashboard. Keep in mind that you can only apply filters that are based on the fields in the reports you added to the dashboard. For example, if you added an Account-based report to your dashboard, you can only filter on fields that are stored on the Account object. This means that you cannot add a date filter for example (as the Account object doesn't contain dates other than the Creation Date). This limitation also implies that adding too many filters most likely doesn't give you the desired end result, at least if you are combining information from reports based on multiple objects. The following example that might illustrate this well: one could think of applying a filter on the Fund or Shareholder field, allowing users to quickly filter on the dashboard on all participations that particular fund is managing. However, if you also added a Key Metric component visualizing the performance of one of your PortCo's, this Fund/Shareholder filter on a dashboard level won't work as the Key Metric report doesn't have such a Fund or Shareholder field to filter on. 

For the tearsheet use-case it makes most sense to apply only one filter, namely the Account Name filter. This filter is available on nearly all of the report types, as the information stored on those records often relates directly to one Account. 

To apply this filter, click "+ Filter" and search for the field to filter on. 

Next, add the Account names that you want to add to the filter as filter values and apply the filter. 

Your end result will look as follows: 

Note: sometimes a single dashboard filter might be applied to multiple fields. For example, an Account filter might be applied to a Venture Account but also to another field that uses the Account as lookup (such as the Shareholder Account field that allows users to select a Shareholder from the existing Accounts in the database). In these cases, you can manually change the applicability of the filter by clicking on the filter icon on the top right hand side of every dashboard component in "edit" mode. 

A video on how to apply these filters can be found here: 

Step 4: Ownership and Investment

Once the generic company information has been added, context around the investment made into the PortCo is required. More specifically, information on the ownership position of the fund and its actual investment to date, provide a good starting point here. 

In order to pull that information into the dashboard, the cap table (in case of equity) should be filled in. This means Shareholders should have been added, as well as a Share Class and accompanying Share Activities. 

Once that information is in, you can create a report of the "Shareholders" type  (with or without "Venture Account"). That type will pull up all shareholders registered within Venturelytic. Once grouped on Account Name, it will combine these Shareholders in a cap table format, adding up to 100% ownership. Take a look at the other fields included in the screenshot below. 

Next, don't forget to apply the filters you need. Make sure to apply those filters in the report that you aren't using as dashboard filters. In this case, that means filtering on "Shareholder: Name" or "Shareholder Fund" from within the report to make sure to only get records related to your fund and not the ownership positions related to other shareholders on the cap table. In this example, we filter on "Fund A". 

Lastly, add this report to the Tearsheet dashboard as a component and determine which fields to visualize in which format. In this case, we decided to visualize both the fully diluted ownership % and the capital invested in numerical form. 

See the video below for more details:


Step 5: Cap Table and Share Activity Overview 

Next to the actual positions you might hold from a fund perspective, it's often also relevant to give your tearsheet reader an impression of the cap table, as well as an overview of the historic transactions that took place. 

For those scenarios you could use a similar base as in step 4, being the Shareholder report type. The only difference with the report in step 4 is the lack of a filter on your fund, as the goal is to see the total cap table. 

The screenshot below gives you an indication of the underlying report you require. Note that the filter applies in the image was caused by us navigating to the report directly from a dashboard (that's why it's called "linked filter"). This filter shouldn't be applied by default to the report itself.  

A video of how to add a cap table report as component to your dashboard can be found here: 

Besides adding a cap table, one might also want to have insight into the latest transactions that took place on that Account. For that, you need the report type "Share Activities" as base. Use already available reports of that type or create a new one. Your end result should look as follows: 

Next, you can add this report as component to the dashboard and select the visualization method. 

More detailed steps are outlined in this video: 

Step 6: Add Valuation Elements

Besides all information related to your investment(s), you need valuation information to make sense of the progress you're making. Below, we're walk you through the process of adding 

a) a latest valuation

b) the valuation development over time

In order for valuation information to be used in reports, underlying valuation records need to be in place. Before you start, double check whether you've activated the correct valuations for your specific company. 

Starting with 6a, the latest valuation component. Create a report of the following type: 

Add the fields you need (in this case we added the Fair Market Value field), and apply the correct filter related to your Fund. The record you end up with can be used as a component in your dashboard. 

For a more detailed approach on 6a, see the video below: 

Next up is 6b, a visualization of the development of the company's fair market value over time. We need a different type of report here, based on "Valuation" rather than just the "Latest Valuation". 

Besides, make sure to group on the correct fields. Originally, this report was grouped on both the Account Name as well as the Created Date of the Valuation record. We removed the Created Date as grouping field and inserted the End Date as grouping field. This allowed us to create a chart of the development of the valuation over time based on the end date of each valuation instead of the creation date (which could hypothetically all be at the same moment). 

Subsequently, apply the correct filters on report level. 

Lastly, determine the right visualization method after adding it as a component to your dashboard. In this case, we chose a line graph. 

All steps can be found back in the video below too: 

Step 7: Add Key Metrics to your Dashboard

Now, we're at a point that we can add richer and frequently changing data to the dashboard in the form of key metrics. There are two options available when adding key metrics: 

a) a report based on the "regular" Key Metrics type. 

b) a report based on the alternative type called "Key Metric Reporting Type Comparisons"

Option "a" is your go-to option as adding metrics to these reports are very user friendly. Choose option "b" (as the title of the object already indicates) if you want to compare metrics by reporting type (such as a actuals vs budget comparison). Option "b" eliminates option's "a" biggest limitation, namely the possibility to let the report calculate the actual difference between reporting types (rather than just visualizing the difference). 

In this case, we go for option "a" to visualize two key metrics: revenue and EBITDA. 

After the report is done, add it to the dashboard and decide on the visualization: 

For a detailed video, see: 

A common use case for adding a report based on the type "Key Metric Reporting Type Comparisons" would be to compare a company's YTD performance with its budget (for multiple metrics). 

For more information on how to add a report based on option "b", see the video below: 

Step 8: Add Evaluations

In a last step of this introduction to setting up a basic Tearsheet dashboard, we're going to add a component to allow you to add textual updates to your dashboard. The Evaluation object is most suited for this purpose. 

Similar to the steps above, the first step in your process would decide on the appropriate report type. In this case, that's the Evaluation report type, containing records of all your evaluations. Once in the "edit" mode of the report, add the fields you need, and apply the relevant filters. The, add the report to your dashboard. The last step before saving looks as follows: 

For more details, see:


Bonus Step: Adding Key Metric Period Comments

For funds actively using our Key Metric Comment functionality; these comments can also be added to your dashboard. For those who aren't familiar, you can add period comments to the "text cloud" next to the period within your Key Metric editing panel (see below). 

Leaving a comment looks as follows: 

To use this comment in a report: 

  1. Select the "Key Metric" report type
  2. Add the "description" field to the layout of the report
  3. Feel free to add additional metrics as well, such as "revenue" and "EBITDA"
  4. Apply the correct filters, and save.



Now, you can save your end result and let users download or subscribe to your newly created dashboard. From now on, you can easily switch between companies with just one click. 


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