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Hi Dino -
Tableau allows user input through filters and parameters. Parameters can contain a set of values you define up-front, or they can allow the user to type in whatever they want. Values stored in a parameter can be "read" and used elsewhere, like in a calculation.
I may very well be reading too much into your question, so feel free to ignore the following guidance...Here goes
Tableau is at it's best as a data visualization and ad-hoc analysis tool. In fact, it's built specifically to work well in those scenarios. The vision you're painting sounds like you want a rows-and-columns input mechanism which spits out values. Can Tableau do this for you? Yes - absolutely.
I'd argue that it isn't the best tool for this sort of job, however. There are other applications (like Excel) that are better suited for rows & columns / non-visual sort of work. Hope this makes sense?
Yes, you are spot on in your understanding of what I need. In fact I do already have a spreadsheet setup (which is functioning well) but I'm wanting to restrict my staff as far as possible from interacting directly with the spreadsheet. I'm trying to create some sort of "front face" for my staff to interact with, which then populates tables in the background. Those tables in turn have calculation fields which yield results.
The dashboard in Tableau seems to be able to offer that "front face" I'm looking for but (as mentioned) I haven't found any tool that allows the user to enter numerical variable data. I've got the general gist of the filter's and would have to re-format my spreadsheet and pre-populate it with more filter values but at least I can see Tableau can handle that side.
Any clues on how to enter numerical variables?
A Tableau Parameter will allow you to enter any data type you wish - you'll just need to configure it to do so. Your "challenge" is that you'll need one parameter-per-cell for data entry - that's a lot of parameters to be created and arranged in a dashboard.