3 Replies Latest reply on Feb 24, 2015 7:15 AM by Mark Jackson

    Top 10 pitfalls implementing Tableau Server

    Mark Jackson

      After having many discussions about this, I decided to write down my advice in a blog post:

      Tableau Zen: Implementing Tableau Server: Top 10 Pitfalls

        • 1. Re: Top 10 pitfalls implementing Tableau Server
          Shawn Wallwork

          Excellent resource, thanks Mark!





          • 2. Re: Top 10 pitfalls implementing Tableau Server
            Toby Erkson

            Nice work Mark.


            I'm hesitant about Pitfall #1: Extreme Proliferation of Data Sources.  Managing can be difficult for sure.  If there are a lot of data sources out there and/or with many databases, tables, views, etc. then having a centrally managed data store can put the IT bottle-neck back into the equation and BI reporting ends up not much better than Cognos, BO, MicroStrategy, etc.  Establishing how or where this should be done can be tricky.  In looking at the environment my users are exposed to, this is not possible nor would it allow a very rapid development cycle (something management is moving towards).


            Pitfall #2: Misuse of Sites.  Now it all makes sense!  Along with Pitfall #4: Excessive Use of Traditional SDLC Processes (Software Development Life Cycle) I think we need to write-up a whitepaper or something to create a new paradigm of the Tableau version of the SDLC because it IS different.  This has been something I've been wrestling with for some time.

            We do something kind of similar to Pitfall #8: Bad User Management Strategy.  Our Projects are set up for the folks that are creating/using the reports (we are very vertical in the reporting needs) and when a Project is created a like-named Group is created as well.  Makes it easier for the author when setting permissions.


            Don't get me started on Pitfall #9: Lack of Data Governance Leadership!  We have a small, grass-roots team that are moving into this direly needed space.  After working at other companies that embrace this, trying to get a billion dollar company headquartered in another country to understand how important this is has been @$%^*! frustrating.  All of us on the team are willingly banging our heads against this wall of ignorance because once we break through they will see the light.  Or so we kid ourselves, who knows


            Good point on Pitfall #10: Build It and They Will Come.  While we try to 'brag' to others we meet, due to the employee population size and distance between locations, it's not easy to 'touch' that many people.  Luckily for us, it's our USERS who are the great evangelists of Tableau!

            • 3. Re: Top 10 pitfalls implementing Tableau Server
              Mark Jackson

              Thanks Toby. #1 can be very challenging for some organizations. The risk with not centrally managing enterprise data sources is loss of trust in the reports since you usually end up with a lot of competing definitions. The key is adequately staffing the data modeling team and being agile with your SDLC processes. Falling prey to #9 usually leads to falling prey to #1.