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Visual management refers to using accessible visual cues to communicate information. Limited interpretation or prior knowledge is needed to understand such content, making interpretation quick and easy. The current state of work, including performance relative to goals, is readily apparent to users ‘at a glance.’

One tool that is useful in healthcare is the visual management board (VMB). A VMB is designed to communicate important aspects of a project in an efficient manner, often using visual displays of information and graphics (as compared with text only). Topics frequently addressed on VMBs include expectations, performance and standards. It is common to see a variety of colors to signify missing and meeting targets, or arrows up or down indicating desired metric direction. A well-designed VMB conveys its message to users standing up to  five feet away, in as little as five minutes.


The following resources are designed to assist with understanding visual management concepts and building a VMB.