Jim Dehner 

 Tableau Visionary and Ambassador

Tableau How to’s,  Use Cases, and Forums Questions

Hey #DataFam

Let’s Talk

6 Types of filters and how they affect the data table

Filters are easy to use, but why are they so often a source of confusion?  (see the Data Dr recording at video recording here ) There a 6 unique types of filters – each has a specific purpose and is applied at different points in the order of operation  as you load data structure the data […]

5 Ways to do YoY and YTD –

YoY and YTD – 5 Ways YoY and YTD calculations are fundamental business metric – after all who doesn't want to know how they compared to last year, last month or how they are tracking on a year to date basis.  It seems that users at all experience levels have questions on how to complete […]

FAQ Series – Business Days

Working with Business Days   Often you only want to use "Business Day" in your viz or move the weekend sales to Friday or Monday –       In the examples here I will use the US standard Sunday – Saturday week with a Monday – Friday "Business Week"  –    1-Weekday Labels   […]

FAQ Series – Fiscal Date

Fiscal Dates Many businesses use a fiscal calendar for accounting and reporting. Their fiscal year can start on the first day of any month and may not align with the start of a calendar quarter.  Tableau makes it easy to adjust for the fiscal year start.   Open the date field and set the Default Property […]

Context filters – What do they really do?

In Tableau, the sequence that filters or calculations are executed is controlled by the Order of Operations – but how does that affect your calculations The order starts with 3 filters – Extract filters limit the data passing from the data source to Tableau, Data Source filters further limit data available in the workbook and […]

Convert String Dates

Dates are a special data type in Tableau the unique properties of being self-sequencing, sorting and can be used in date functions to set ranges, filter and aggregations.  But some legacy systems or public sources sometimes cast dates as a single string or individual strings for each date part.  Working with “real date” is much […]

Order of Operations

So Just how does the Order of Operations affect your calculations? Tableau, like most systems, has an order or sequence in which filters are applied and calculations are executed.  The process starts at the top and proceeds to the bottom in a single pass.  Calculations executed lower in the order depend on all the steps […]

Not all NULLS are created equal

Not all Nulls are created equal? – Really?   Nulls – they break your calculations and mess with your charts but why are they difficult to fix? There are 2  types of nulls each has a different solution Empty Cell Null The easiest to understand and to fix is the Empty Cell Null in your […]

Cannot Mix Aggregate and Non-aggregate

Cannot Mix Aggregate and Non-aggregate  One of the most frequent questions we see on the Forum results from trying mixing aggregate and non-aggregates in the same calculation – But why is that a problem and how do you resolve it –  Next time you load a data file into Tableau, open the data source tab and […]

YoY – Three different approaches

  Year over Year analysis – 3 different ways As the year comes to an end a  frequent topic on the Forum is how to complete a YoY analysis – here we will look at 3 different approaches – one using table calculations, one with LOD's and a final way using sets and value pickers. […]