Dan welcome to the forums! To answer your question: depends on what you want to do with it once you get it into Tableau. Depends on how big the "stack" is. Depends on whether every "snapshot" includes the exact same fields (none are added or subtracted). Depends... Before you respond please read this, and see if it helps you ask a bit more concrete question.
In the meantime, generically, the answer is "Yes" Tableau can connect to all these spreadsheet individually and then produce data visualizations.
Hope this helps, again welcome.
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You can join/link multiple data sources within Tableau, you should search for "Data Blending" to see examples of how to do that, you would need to build a table to link (provide a common field) to link all the semester files together. My suggestion would be creating one large excel, adding a new column called "Semester" and adding the correct semester value as you copy and paste data into the large file. Tableau has a great link on how to prep data in excel: http://kb.tableausoftware.com/articles/knowledgebase/preparing-excel-files-analysis the "each row contains only one piece of data" is a very important piece to focus on. Also when you get a new semester, you can open the excel sheet, copy and paste the new data in, label the new semester and save the file and refresh the data sources to handle new data.
Thank you for your feedback; this is quite helpful in understanding how to best ask questions.
I have attached two excel workbooks, one for each semester of the last academic year. From this data, I would like to calculate the following information and compare the two semesters:
- Total unique headcount (by ID)
- Total hours taken (Unit Taken)
- Retention (students enrolled in the first semester that return for the second semester)
I understand that I am able to cut and paste the data in to one excel sheet and am willing to do so if this is the most effective process. However, I currently have about 20 such workbooks and gain three more each year.
Any advice on the best way to accomplish this is most welcome. Thank you!
Daniel, thanks for the spreadsheets. I've got good news and bad news. Tableau is going to require that all those sheet be put into the same workbook . But you won't have to keep appending to the bottom of a single sheet if you don't want to. Instead you can just use this custom SQL code:
I put both sheets in one workbook and named the tabs accordingly. (See attached workbooks.)
Just a little extra info, if you do separate tabs using union to combine all them, you'll need to edit the data connection and add the new union each time you create a new tab, and you'll loose the semester dimension unless you add the semester field in the SELECT code for each tab.
Adding the data to one tab in excel with a column for semester eliminates all these needs and allows the data to update without having to update the connection and creates a semester dimension based on the data.
If you haven't you can google excel workbook mergers there are a few options out there to combine workbooks.
Yes, I hadn't thought of that. And thanks for the info. Russell, do you have a favorite "workbook merger" technique? I'm interested. Thanks,
Along with Excel has built in features for merging workbooks, http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/excel-help/merge-copies-of-a-shared-workbook-HP010177169.aspx but you have to turn sharing on (you can share them just to yourself).
If its only a few workbooks, I would just use keyboard shortcuts to do it.