As more companies double down on cloud adoption, Tableau is expanding its business intelligence capabilities to put analytics in the hands of more business users and make data-driven insights accessible anytime, anywhere.
At the ongoing Tableau conference, Salesforce-owned company introduced Tableau Cloud as the next generation of its cloud-first analytics platform, Tableau Online. The offering brings several innovations, including Data Stories – a solution that makes it easier and faster to create value from data.
What exactly are data stories?
While dashboards with visualizations have long been the way to harness actionable insights from data, Data Stories’ capability takes it a step further. It uses natural language and advanced analytics to automatically display explanations in plain language on Tableau dashboards, so any business user can understand and interact with data faster.
The easy-to-understand, story-like analysis provided by this feature makes data more accessible and eliminates the need for reports explaining dashboard charts/graphs. This allows analysts to focus on other, more complicated tasks, while making it easier for business users to access the data, especially those who are not data literate.
According to the company, users can simply drag-and-drop the record to retrieve the history and even use tweaks to format it their preferred way.
“With Tableau Cloud, we’re making it easier for our customers to achieve even more analytics success. Tableau Cloud helps our customers provide their users with the analytics they need while we ensure the highest levels of trust, availability, and performance,” said Francois Ajenstat, chief product officer for Tableau at Salesforce.
In addition to Data Stories, which is currently in preview, Tableau also announced its official expansion into data science. The company said it will soon offer a model builder within the Tableau workflow to help business teams collaborate, build and deploy predictive AI models for various use cases. This will allow companies to use their data to predict what might happen (supplied through visualizations) and make decisions to counteract it.
The offering, powered by Salesforce’s Einstein Discovery engine, automates most of the feature engineering and model customization process and is expected to be available alongside Data Stories by the end of the year.
Among other things, Tableau Cloud gains an enhanced management capability that allows organizations to gain insight into the performance and adoption of their Tableau deployment. Admins can leverage this capability not only to understand how Tableau is being used, but also to implement encryption keys for data security and to ensure teams across the organization only have access to relevant data.
To help customers get started with the new cloud product, Tableau now offers more than 100 accelerators on the Tableau Exchange, including those developed by experts across its network of partners. These ready-to-use, customizable dashboards can be used across multiple industries, departments, and business applications. Companies can consume an offer directly in Tableau Exchange without starting a separate download.
To make data more accessible, the company introduced two key features over the past year: Ask Data and Explain Data. The former allowed users to enter questions in general language and get answers instantly, while the latter ran statistical models to reveal the key drivers behind specific data points.