Introduction to Waterfall Chart in Tableau
The waterfall chart in Tableau is one kind of chart among different others that can be built by the Tableau application. Every chart has its own significance, which we will discuss in the importance section, but before we begin the process of making a waterfall chart in Tableau, we would present a scenario to our readers. This problem statement will help them to understand the Waterfall applicability.
Scenario – So you have a merchandising business that is doing good in the course of time, you need to analyze your business data and get the exact profit and loss data statement. The timeslot can vary from week to month or even to a yearly basis.
Process of Waterfall Chart in Tableau
1. Get ready with your data; we, in this article, have created a sample dataset. Pull the data into the Tableau application via Open >> data source.
Note – We in this article have mentioned Items v/s Profit Waterfall chart. We will measure profit in relation to the given items.
2. Once you have your data set in the Tableau application, select the SUM category and drag and drop in the Rows section as mentioned below –
3. Once you will do it, you can see the bar chart for Profit (blue bar).
4. Then you have to drag and drop the sub-category (or the items name) in the ‘Column’ section of the dashboard – have a look at the below screen. The subcategory is a measuring dimension – which is a list of items.
5. With this, a basic layout of your graph is ready, but this is not a Waterfall Chart in Tableau rather a bar chart. We have to manipulate its form from now onwards. Let us see how things roll out from here onwards –
6. Now, we have to make certain changes in the graph – to make it display the ‘Running Total’ details. For this, we have to right-click on the ‘SUM’ present in the ‘Rows’ section; you will get ‘Quick Table Calculation’ and then ‘Running Total’.
So, SUM >>QUICK TABLE CALCULATION >> RUNNING TOTAL
Follow the below-mentioned screen –
7. Once you have made these changes in the graph, you will get something like the below-mentioned screen.
8. The above screen is the Running Total screen for the selected list of items.
9. The very next thing is to convert this chart into the Waterfall Chart in Tableau; for this, we will navigate to the “MARKS’ section of the dashboard. The ‘Marks’ section is on the left-hand side. The Marks section contains all the data enhancement techniques.
10. We have to click on the ‘Marks’ drop-down menu button and select the “Gantt’ chart. Refer to the below mentioned screen.
11. With this, you will get a Gantt chart view of your data, but there are several corrections needed. Let us see first the Gantt chart view in the below screen –
12. Now, we need to get the bars (or the data) on top of this Gantt chart. In order to do this, we need to do a simple adjustment. We need to create a calculated measure; to do this, we have to right-click anywhere on the ‘DATA’ field. After that, you have to select the ‘’CREATE CALCULATED FIELD”. Refer to the below screen of Waterfall Chart in Tableau –
Note – We can see the ‘DATA’ and ‘ANALYTICS’ section – rounded in the red rectangle.
So we have to right-click in the “Data’ column.
13. Once you will select the “Calculated Fields’ you will get a dialogue box where we have to rename it (generally choose a relevant name like Negative Profit). This is in response to the actual value and then click on the ‘OK’ button. Refer to the below screen –
14. Now, you have to pull the ‘Negative Value’ parameter (Which you just created – refer to the above screen) in the ‘SIZE’ (present in the MARKS section). This ‘Negative value’ which you just created will be present in the “DATA’ section.
Note – You just have to drag and drop this newly created “Negative Value’ to the ‘Size’ section (present in Marks).
Refer to the below screen for better understanding –
15. The data present in the above screen is a Gantt chart view. If you hover your cursor on the Gantt bars, you can see the Positive/ Negative values associated with each of them. A very good example will be the chart itself; one can easily understand why this chart is called Waterfall (just because the data represent one single value – +ve/=ve). Refer to the below screen for data marking –
This is all about the Waterfall Gantt chart in Tableau. We like to say that this is just the basic of the Waterfall chart, as no two charts can be similar and also, the chart customization varies from person to person.
Importance of Waterfall Chart in Tableau
1. They act as a medium of information within the concerned party.
2. A means of communication among the team
3. A way to get better insights into the business data
4. Data visualization techniques
5. Helps to get net, cumulative, profit, loss values
6. These charts have varying applicability in several streams like population control, birth rate, death rate, business profit/loss, supermarkets, etc.
This is how we use to create a Waterfall chart in Tableau; These charts are sometimes also known as Flying Chart or bridge chart. As a whole, they act as a very good way to look into the business rise and fall.
This is a guide to a Waterfall chart in Tableau. Here we discussed its basic concept, importance, and process to create a Waterfall Chart in Tableau. You may also look at the following articles to learn more –