6 Replies Latest reply on Dec 2, 2016 9:47 AM by Eoghan Lyons

    Tableau Desktop Licenses

    Eoghan Lyons

      Hello all,


      I've been contracted to assist a company involved in the tourism sector to complete a business intelligence project.


      My experience to date has primarily been in the Tableau public product (I've used it for personal, expanding skills, and for non-sensitive data thus far). I'm recommending Tableau to them as part of the deal, so it will be used for commercial purposes.


      My question here is, what's the situation with licensing and ongoing costs for choosing Tableau Desktop?

           If they sign up, are they covered by paying for one license but usable by users throughout the business? Can there be more than one active screen logged into the same account?    

           Regardless, are they one off payments or annual subscription?

           I understand there is a limit to the length of updates available, which is fine, but I suspect the initial build will be fine for quite a long time.

           The company has approximately 80 staff, but only about 10 people will have any use of this data, and at that unlikely to be daily use by that many people.


      As an aside, if they only store data using standard excel sheets rather than via cloud storage, is there much point in getting Tableau Server? (I'm not entirely sure of the benefits of Tableau Server)


      Thanks a mill.



        • 1. Re: Tableau Desktop Licenses
          David Li

          Hi Eoghan, each Tableau Desktop user will need a separate license, and according to the licensing agreement, each license should only be in use by one person. Licenses are perpetual (i.e. the right to use Tableau is a one-time purchase per user), but there's an annual maintenance subscription if you want to keep receiving updates and support after the first year. More info here: Buy Tableau | Tableau Webstore


          Note that not every user of Tableau will need Tableau Desktop. They can use the free Tableau Reader, for instance, if they're just consuming data. Tableau Desktop is only needed for users who are constructing reports and doing analysis.


          I'd say that whether or not they need Tableau Server depends on their use case, not on their data. For instance, even if they had SQL databases, they could just directly connect to those. However, Tableau Server is potentially a great way to serve up views to consumers and to centralize data sources for the org.

          • 2. Re: Tableau Desktop Licenses
            Yash Chaturvedi

            Hi Eoghan,


            Tableau Desktop Personal Edition costs: $999 per user.

            Tableau Desktop Professional Edition costs: $1,999 per user


            As per your requirement, you should go with the Professional edition. As mentioned above only one user can use one licence. You only have to pay once for the Desktop and you'll get update till 1 year of your purchase. Yes, initial build is fine but Tableau frequently launch with the new updated versions as per the industry trends (it feels good to be updated).


            In your case, as mentioned if 10 people have to develop dashboards/reports then you can suggest 5-7 Tableau Desktop professional licence or if only one person will develop and others want to see the dashboards/report and with interactivity then you should go with few Tableau Server licences.


            Tableau server is used to share the dashboards/reports with the staff without any hardware installation on the staff system, to update the data and for security, maintenance and many more are the benefits of Tableau Server.


            I'll recommend to visit Tableau website for licences and Talk to the sales people with whatever your requirement, they will give you the best possible solution.


            Hope you're somewhat clear with the your query.




            3 of 3 people found this helpful
            • 3. Re: Tableau Desktop Licenses
              Matthew Risley

              David Li couldn't of said it better. I will add one thing, though.


              I would hold off on getting Server (or Cloud- which is also another option) and use Tableau Reader for a little bit. This will get the organization's feet wet with using Tableau. Once they give the green-light on using Tableau, then the benefits of Server will definitely be cost-effective. Tableau is an investment for a business if (and only if) it is used. Ask how many people will actually be creating reports, and how many people will actually be viewing them.


              Lesson learned from experience:

              Scenario 1: "Oh we don't need too many desktop licenses, just one or two". This leads the one Analyst with the license swamped with work as the business ends up loving Tableau and needs him/her to create report after report. This is also viable if this is what he/she has been hired for, but if they have other work to do- it can get messy.


              Scenario 2: "Everyone needs a license". This can lead to the organization spending money on Desktop/Server licenses that they don't need when some people simply do not like switching to new technology (which is a shame).


              I will also say not everyone needs desktop. Tableau Server has web-edit capabilities which is good enough for basic questions like "What were my Sales last year vs. last?"


              Hope this gives you more info!

              1 of 1 people found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Tableau Desktop Licenses
                Eoghan Lyons

                Thanks all, very helpful.


                David, that's fine. In the case of this company, I will be the primary person constructing the dashboards/storyboards and they will take the completed data as a basis for reporting and understanding their business. So I think the reader idea could well work here, i.e. desktop for the builder, reader for the directors and finance department.


                Thanks again for the suggestion.



                • 5. Re: Tableau Desktop Licenses
                  Eoghan Lyons



                  Thanks for the info, particularly on the server aspect of it. By that I read it almost like a pseudo shared drive that staff can access, that sounds quite convenient I must say, particularly as this company has several different physical offices.


                  I suspect a teleconference with the company and the Tableau sales team would be quite useful.



                  • 6. Re: Tableau Desktop Licenses
                    Eoghan Lyons



                    Thanks very much. Good idea, particularly with the as yet unknown variable of usage in practice, food for thought. I think this idea of going piecemeal will be well received, particularly as it requires only a minimal outlay initially.