NZIER Tourism Dashboards using Tableau

by Dilip Cheerala on 08/01/2013 02:01

As an experienced Data Architect, I have started using Tableau software to visualise data. Tableau has been used extensively at Equinox in the past for visualising performance testing data, and you can see some of our experience with this tool in the various posts from Richard Leeke in this blog.

I was recently asked to construct a Tableau Workbook to visually represent tourism forecast data that was produced by NZIER for Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment. NZIER has produced the tourism forecasts for the next six years including 2012, based on historical data ranging from 1979 to 2011.

Tableau has a rich set of capabilities for data visualisation and business analytics.

I needed to reshape the raw data that was provided by NZIER into a new structure to suit the data visualisation requirements of Tableau. I produced two dashboards, one of which shows the Global Visitors view and other, the Country Forecasts.

The Global Visitors dashboard consists of a global navigation map which shows the static data for a country matching the selected country, year and metric.

The second dashboard displays time series data (historical and forecasts) on country-by -country basis, for the selected country from the Global Visitors dashboard. This dashboard also has various filter options to narrow down the analysis.

More information and the embedded Tableau data visualisation can also be seen on the NZIER website

It has been proven that data can be better understood by pictures than by reading numbers. The visitors’ countries of origin and the key countries that are contributing to NZ tourism economy can be easily seen from the Global Visitors Dashboard. The size of the circles on the map shows relative value of the chosen metric.

The two dashboards are linked to allow online users to navigate easily between the two dashboards. Users can switch between the dashboards by clicking the displayed hyperlinks when users move their mouse on the map or bar graph or time series graph. The help and Info icons provide help text and other information about the dashboards.

Data combined with the geographic maps allows users to easily interpret the data, recognise patterns and discover insights. For example, total visitors from Australia are higher than any other country and the reason for this could be that NZ is closer to Australia than any other key countries.

The dashboards not only present the data in a visually appealing manner but also stimulate the users to explore the data in an interactive manner. This is the power of data visualisation.

Tableau Software offers a comprehensive set of features for data visualisation and analysis. This workbook uses some of the features of Tableau Software. The workbook can be shared and embedded into web pages easily.

Explore the information…………

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