Tableau Server: A No-Brainer
December 20, 2018
Tableau Server: A No-Brainer
Score 10 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with Tableau Server
Tableau Server is a vital part of our data ecosystem. Without it, our data analytics and general reporting efforts would be greatly impeded if not completely derailed. It hosts a large majority of our internal facing reporting KPIs and metrics, and enables our business leaders to keep a watchful eye on the status of the company and its health.
- It is able to extract data very efficiently, as compared to extracting data on one's personal machine
- It is able to handle a large quantity of content and traffic to the reports hosted on the server
- It is fairly self-sustaining and doesn't require too much maintenance, though it is hosted in our own environment.
- Some of the metrics and data relevant to Tableau Server are difficult to get to, and it would be super insightful if it was more accessible and readily available to users trying to report on it
- Without a doubt, the use of Tableau Server has saved millions in terms of dollars saved with automated and accessible reporting
- Deployment level of effort is quite minimal from an analyst's perspective, and still relatively small on the Dev Ops and Infrastructural dependencies as well
We are using it on-premises given its' need to access sensitive data only available on our VPCs, which makes it easier to manage when granting access to data in sensitive environments. I have personally deployed to Tableau Servers that weren't on-prem, and have found the user experience to be nearly indistinguishable.
So far so good on governance. We were able to integrate with and manage it via Okta and Workday to ensure authorized users were the only ones able to push content to Tableau Server, or make administrative changes, while not preventing all other internal users from simply consuming/accessing hosted content.
We haven't had any significant issues connecting to our data sources like Postgres, Cloudera Hadoop, MySQL, etc. There are occasional issues where it seems to lose connectivity extracting from certain data sources in our VPC, but I am assuming there may be other factors at stake here.
It's very easy to share dashboard or manage access controls, and it syncs fairly well with authentication providers. The alerting can get better, and undoubtedly will get better as it seems to do year after year. In the meantime we have built custom notifications to handle the unique use cases we have, but out of the box, Tableau Server does its job.
Working with support on an issue I was running into wasn't the greatest experience. That being said, the documentation and community around Tableau is actually quite helpful, so the need to ever leverage support is already pretty small, which leaves the extremely difficult and unusual cases for support.
If you have sensitive data that you are wanting to share in a High Level Visual Analytics environment, Tableau Server is the way to go. Your executives will appreciate no longer wondering how their business is actually doing, but can in a lot of cases have real-time visual depictions on the health of their companies, or at least accurate as of the previous day (depending on your data ecosystem).