3 Replies Latest reply on Feb 21, 2012 5:35 AM by Shawn Wallwork

    Performance Indicator Dial

    Alan Kwan

      I know Tableau doesn't have this feature, but is it possible? It would be great if it could be one of the featured graphs.

       

      I need one of those half circle dials, where 0 is red and 100 is green. Anyone know how to make one or have an existing workbook that they can share?

       

      Thanks,

      Alan

        • 1. Re: Performance Indicator Dial
          Jonathan Drummey

          You could possibly/probably draw one by creating custom shapes for the different needle positions and then set up the view to have a custom background image for the dial, and carefully size the view so the data fits over the image.

           

          However, since you already know that Tableau doesn't support these sorts of gauges, why try? They are un- or mis-informative, waste a whole lot of screen space, and bad practice, which is why Tableau doesn't support them. I believe that part of my role as an analyst and visualizer of data is to help my audience get the most out of their time and effort, if they think a dial will work then I educate them and offer them a better solution that gives them the data they need and more context (that dials can't provide).

           

          Stephen Few has a good discussion of this very topic in http://www.perceptualedge.com/articles/misc/WhyMostDashboardsFail.pdf.

           

          Jonathan

          • 2. Re: Performance Indicator Dial
            James Pacey

            I encountered this issue when trying to redevelop a dashboard in Tableau and ended up using a 'spirit level' type gauge (see picture). This has the advantage of being comparable at a glance when aligned vertically with other gauges.

             

            Its just a horizontal bar chart with the mark type changed to a bubble then reference lines are used to colour the background.

             

            • 3. Re: Performance Indicator Dial
              Shawn Wallwork

              Its just a horizontal bar chart with the mark type changed to a bubble then reference lines are used to colour the background.

               

               

              James, nice idea. Thanks.

               

              --Shawn