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Workbook Anniversary prompts with stats - promote individual ownership of maintenance

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Challenge

If, like me, you have a governance role to play in the up keep of your Tableau Server, I'm sure you've seen the pattern of:

  1. New material created
  2. Old material not reviewed
  3. Capacity becomes an issue for refreshes/backups
  4. Centrally have to analyse the redundant workbooks/datasources taking up space
  5. Even worse, the redundant items that are still refreshing
  6. Contact the owners and admins
  7. 50% of what you identified is taken off the server
  8. No engagement from the other 50% - make a call on centrally removing it or living with it
  9. Everything works fine again
  10. And repeat

 

Basic Solution

I'm not sure what the average life expectancy of a Tableau workbook/datasource is, but could an auto-alert be generated to the owner on the anniversary of each item, prompting them to review if it's still required, still built on accurate data models... and prompting actions - i.e. assess usage and if this is low then why not download a twbx copy and remove from the server, etc.  This would motivate good behaviour at an individual developer level in terms of keeping the server clean.

 

Advanced Solution

One step beyond this, if the mail could feature stats like average views per month for the last year for each tab, average refresh time, size, average number/% of failed extracts per month, use some AI to detect if features/functionality from the latest Tableau release were being used...it could help inform decisions on the future development of the dashboard and where some tweaks may be a good idea.   

 

Benefits

  • Service runs smoother with fewer redundant items taking up capacity
  • Better end user experience as workbooks hit closer to their refresh schedule
  • More federated model of proactive governance - create capacity in central team
  • Prompt continuous improvement of workbooks showing off the great features of Tableau to end users

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