Onsite Tableau Training: Frequently Asked Questions

If you prefer, you can also download these questions and answers as a PDF handout.

Onsite Tableau Training with Chad Skelton
Frequently Asked Questions

What does the training include?

This hands-on workshop with award-winning data journalist Chad Skelton will teach your team the fundamentals of Tableau as well as the principles of good data storytelling. Participants will learn the technical skills necessary to use Tableau effectively to analyze and visualize their data. But they’ll also learn the art of telling stories with data — from how to choose the right chart type to designing engaging Dashboards — from someone with years of experience building popular interactive maps and charts.

Specifically, the two-day training session includes:
  • How to ask questions of your data
  • Data visualization best practices
  • Understanding the Tableau workspace
  • How to make static charts in Tableau
  • How to make interactive Dashboards in Tableau
  • How saving and publishing works in Tableau
  • How to make interactive point maps and shape maps in Tableau
  • How to construct various chart types including Bar Charts, Line Charts, Stacked Bar Charts, Highlight Tables and Scatterplots
  • How to add Annotations to your charts
Additional topics will be covered, time permitting.

At each stage of the training, participants will learn both the technical skills required to complete the task in Tableau as well as how to decide which tool to use for the job and how to make their charts as engaging as possible.

The two-day training will also include short “brainstorming” sessions where participants will have a chance to apply the skills they’ve learned to a new dataset.

How long is the training?

In-person training workshops run over two full days. Online training is delivered in three four-hour sessions using the join.me app. Online training can be scheduled whenever is most convenient for your organization’s needs: For example, three days in a row or one day a week over three weeks.

Who does the training?

All training sessions are delivered by Chad Skelton, an award-winning data journalist, consultant and trainer based in Vancouver.

Chad worked as a data journalist at The Vancouver Sun until 2015. In 2014, Chad won an international Data Journalism Award for his portfolio of work in the previous year. He has also received the Jack Webster Award, B.C.'s top journalism prize, six times.

Chad has years of experience creating engaging, beautiful dashboards using Tableau. His Tableau Public visualizations have been viewed more than 1.5 million times. Examples of Chad's Tableau work can be seen here.

Chad’s sold-out public Tableau training sessions have won rave reviews from participants.

Chad has taught at Kwantlen Polytechnic University since 2005, where he teaches the popular Citizen Journalism and Data Visualization courses. He receives consistently high marks from his students. Chad also teaches a course in Data Storytelling and Visualization at the University of Florida as part of its online Master's program in Audience Analytics.

Chad has given several talks on data and storytelling, including at the 2015 Tapestry Conference sponsored by Tableau Software and at Simon Fraser University's Dream Colloquium on Engaging Big Data.

Will participants be provided with handouts for what they learn?

Detailed PDF handouts, with screengrabs, will be provided for every topic covered, so participants will have something to refer back to after the workshop is over. There are more than 200 pages of handouts in total, essentially providing your participants with a Tableau training manual that is theirs to keep.

How many people can participate in the training?

A maximum of 15 people can participate in an onsite training session, though it is recommended that you have 12 or fewer. The fewer people you have in the session, the more time there will be for one-on-on support.

What are the technical requirements of the training?

All participants will need to have a laptop with Tableau Public or Tableau Desktop already installed. (Detailed installation instructions are here.) If participants do not have a paid license for Tableau Desktop, Tableau Public is recommended (as they won’t need to worry about the 14-day trial period expiring). The interface for Tableau Public and Tableau Desktop are nearly identical, so the skills learned on one can be applied to the other.

For in-person training sessions, all participants, and the instructor, will need to have access to WiFi during the training. A projector with a VGA or HDMI cable is also required for the training. If you don’t have a projector, let Chad know and he can provide his own.

For online training, all participants must have a reasonably fast Internet connection (2Mbs+). Most broadband cable/DSL connections should be fine. All participants will also need the free join.me app installed on your computer. Those unable to install the app can join through the Chrome web browser but won't be able to share their screen.

Can you customize the training to use my organization’s data?

The datasets Chad uses in his Tableau training have been specifically chosen to make learning Tableau easier. For that reason, Chad does not customize training to use an organization’s own datasets.

That said, if you have a single dataset that your participants are familiar with, Chad may be able to use that data for one of the “brainstorming” sessions. The dataset would need to be sent to Chad at least two weeks prior to the training to give him time to review it and make sure it can work for the training.

Also, if the dataset you want to use contains proprietary information (i.e. sales data, customer addresses), your staff will need to use Tableau Desktop for the training as Tableau Public is not safe to use for private data.

How much does the training cost?

Please email Chad Skelton at cskeltondata@gmail.com for rates.

As a rule of thumb, though, if you have more than seven people at your organization requiring Tableau training, onsite training is usually more affordable than sending your employees to one of Chad’s public workshops.

With smaller groups of five to six, onsite training is slightly more expensive than sending your staff to a public workshop, but provides a training experience focused specifically on your organization’s needs.

Please note: In-person Tableau Training is available in Vancouver as well as its many suburbs including North Vancouver, Coquitlam, Burnaby and Surrey. Chad also offers a variety of consulting services.

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