Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

These are the questions we hear a lot, and you’ll find the answers below. But if you have others, please don’t hesitate to contact us — we’re here to help.

It’s a revolutionary analytics platform that’s mobile-first and brings flexible business intelligence to everyone in your company. It works with any data, from any data source, and it will change the way your company answers critical questions. Wave offers three features that legacy analytics can’t match: 

  • Beautiful data visualizations: Our gorgeous, user-friendly mobile interface is designed for everyone and every device.
  • Instant exploration: Because it isn’t based on rigid, preselected schemas, you can find and slice data lightning fast.
  • Cloud speed and scale: It’s natively integrated with Salesforce, so it delivers the fastest time to value, without expensive, time-consuming hardware or upgrades.

Reports and Dashboards provide an instant snapshot of the metrics that matter to your business, including team performance, lead volume, and conversion rates. It looks and behaves like Wave Analytics, but provides very different functionality.

Wave is designed for self-service data discovery. It extends beyond Reports and Dashboards to give you new views into your pipeline, end-to-end customer insight, and historical analytics to help you plan your next best step. 

Recently developed discovery tools offer better charting capabilities than traditional business intelligence, but they fall short when it comes to search speed, the need to build schemas, and discriminating against new data types. Plus they aren’t mobile, and they’re often deployed onsite.

Tableau CRM, on the other hand, is designed to bring true business intelligence to every business user in every line of business: from sales reps, to service reps, to marketing managers and beyond. It is 100% mobile: not just for tablets, and not as an afterthought.

It also allows you to maintain control of your data. With some other solutions, data analysts will download data and store it locally — taking governance out of your company’s hands. With Wave, you can ensure that critical company data stays in your system and isn’t exposed through substandard security.

Many of our large enterprise customers have asked the same thing, only to discover that Wave works more like a search engine that allows them to instantly explore data in any direction, rather than a spreadsheet that requires time-consuming, headache-inducing manual revisions. They’ve also discovered that real mobile access to data is a powerful business accelerator that can help employees do better work, faster.

Not all analytics tools are created equal. Wave is next-generation business analytics designed to provide critical answers at consumer speed. It’s intuitive, empowering, and built for mobile. It lets everyone explore data in ways they couldn’t with legacy analytics, which leads to discussions, decisions, and transactions that are driven by insight, instead of instinct. 

With Tableau CRM you can deliver tailored analytics experiences to Sales, Service, Marketing, and IT business users so that they can take action quickly without getting bogged down by complex dashboards.

The short answer: It’s night and day. The longer answer: Relational databases require deep-level integration across schemas and between datasets. This is difficult and time-consuming. Conversely, Tableau CRM is a mobile tool that lets you explore information like you would with a search engine. This creates faster time to value, and more flexible data visualization and navigation.

  • Relational databases are schema-based. Schemas are based on assumptions about questions that need to be asked ahead of time, and require pre-aggregation due to long query times. This forces rigid searches and questions, preventing users from exploring unique opportunities on the spot.

Instead, Tableau CRM uses search-inspired technology to mash up data across silos, to unify and collapse the systems integration lifecycle.

  • Relational databases are brittle. Changes in source data — like updating your product list in your enterprise planning system — can break the whole schema, forcing IT to spend days or weeks fixing things.

Instead, Tableau CRM is an organic, flexible system that’s 100% adaptable to change or varied data types.

  • Relational databases can’t ingest unstructured or semistructured data. Legacy business intelligence and relational databases can only ingest specific types of data, and can only scale to structured datasets. They can’t ingest or combine semistructured data.

    Instead, Tableau CRM can easily handle semistructured data because it works like a search engine, not a spreadsheet. Data is constantly changing, and is shaped differently today than it was 10 years ago. Wave is designed to adapt to all of these changes, and more.

  • Relational databases limit exploration; you can’t get to individual records. Databases use pre-aggregation and precomputation, which limits search flexibility. Legacy systems were optimized for performance and storage costs, making aggregation a necessary evil for queries. 

Instead, Tableau CRM uses a key-value store and inverted index that allows slicing and dicing down to individual records, while making it easy to explore hundreds of millions of rows.

Legacy analytics solutions were never equipped to deliver self-service. Those technologies were built on the premise that all data mining would be done by analysts, who would email or share information with business users. These systems are inherently slow and inflexible, and it’s impossible to force them to move at consumer speed. But Tableau CRM completely transforms business intelligence by moving from a schema-based design to a search-based design — finally putting analytics in the hands of employees, no matter where they’re working, and without the need for IT or analysts.
They’re a series of purpose-built analytics apps designed to put relevant answers in the hands of every member of your team, across every line of business, while adapting to your ongoing business needs. With Tableau CRM, everyone can explore data, uncover insights, and instantly take action from any device.
All you need to do is get your data into Tableau CRM. Once it’s in the system, anyone with the right permissions can begin slicing and dicing data, and building dashboards.

Tableau CRM is as close to plug-and-play as any analytics solution on the market. There are two ways to load Salesforce data: You can write the data flow yourself, or use a simple visual wizard to create your initial datasets. Many of our customers set up their initial Salesforce datasets within a few minutes or hours.

Getting third-party data into Tableau CRM is relatively easy thanks to our integration partners. Depending on the volume of the data, this can take a few hours.

Most of your setup time will be spent identifying use cases and thinking strategically about which datasets make sense and what dashboards need to be built.
Nope. Unlike legacy business intelligence, Tableau CRM is designed for every single person in your organization.

Typical analytics solutions are difficult to use and require expertise. Even simple questions are sent into an overburdened service bureau, causing a backlog. This kind of system makes it difficult for analysts to deliver timely insights that drive strategic business decisions.

But Wave is different. It’s designed to be used like a search engine, and enables you to explore and share data from every angle, on the fly. You no longer have to log tickets to ask a simple question — now you can get insight on your own.
Absolutely. One of the key features of Tableau CRM is dashboard edit capabilities, so you can build them out as you like.

We don’t believe in discriminating against data sources. Tableau CRM is open to any data, including structured CRM data in Salesforce, financial data in SAP, or inventory data in Oracle. And Tableau CRM works with the overwhelming amount of new data being created all the time, including semi-structured data from machines, sensors, mobile apps, and websites. We manage the data in Salesforce CRM apps, AppExchange apps, and custom apps directly. For other data sources, you can use any popular ETL tool to move data to Wave, or leverage its public API to load data. 

All of the data you have in Salesforce is available to you in Tableau CRM. If you want to bring data directly into Tableau CRM from another system, you need to upgrade to the Tableau CRM license.

Tableau CRM for Community Cloud helps you share personalized Tableau CRM dashboards with your partner communities, providing them with the insight to drive your business. Now your partners can see historical performance summaries and prioritize which opportunities to focus on, so they can start selling like your own reps. Deliver scale instantly, with the Salesforce security and speed you already know and trust. 

Learn more about Tableau CRM.

Test drive Tableau CRM and explore real datasets.

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