PaulaLevel alumn, Paula Muñoz used the skills learned in the program to create an amazing visualization that Tableau picked as the Viz of the Day on Tuesday, December 5th. Tableau chose Paula’s visual representation of the price of curry among many other submissions to be highlighted on their website. We are proud to have Paula as an alumn, showcasing what our students can accomplish after gaining these skills through our Data Analytics program. I got the chance to sit down with Paula and ask her how about her project. Congratulations, Paula – what an accomplishment!

How did you come up with this idea?

A year ago, when I was introduced to Tableau software during the Level boot camp program, I fell in love with this Business Intelligence tool and decided to take my tableau skills to the next level and learn how to create advanced charts and more insightful dashboards.

During this self-learning journey, I came across fascinating and powerful resources online including #MakeOverMonday1, which is a weekly social project where every Sunday, Tableau Zen master Andy Kriebel and Tableau Evangelist Eva Murray post a link to a free chart along with its data and article to re-create the visualization. I find this project to be an excellent way to practice my Tableau skills.

The visualization selected by Tableau Public on December 5th as Viz of the Day was the visualization I submitted on week 49 as part of the #MakeOverMonday challenge.

Tell me about your visualization.

Week 49 of the #MakeoverMonday challenge consisted of analyzing data related to Wetherspoon, a national pub chain with several restaurants in the UK and Ireland. The sample data and original charts were collected and published by the Financial Times2 the data contained pricing for the same menu from 213 Weatherspoon restaurants across the U.K.

The data showed the same menu could significantly vary in price based on the restaurant location, but for my visualization I didn’t want the take away message to be “Look how different the prices are”, but instead to be an informative and interactive Viz to guide the potential Weatherspoon customers through the search of the most convenient restaurant based on their location and their budget.

Why did you decide to focus on the price of curry?

The data also provided information related to the price of drinks, but after exploring the data, I believe the data related to the variance in pricing for food/curries was [richer] and [more] interesting than the data related to drinks.

What were the steps you took to complete this project?

The steps I took to complete the project included:

1. Read the original article to understand the context of the data.

2. Visit the Wetherspoon website to understand better how their business works.

3. Download the data (excel file) and upload it into Tableau to start an exploratory analysis, including the checking of the total number of records, inspecting the different variables (dimensions and measures) available, etc.

4. Start playing around with the data and different type of charts that could be used in my final visualization.

5. Design the layout of the dashboard, select font, colors, and images to be used… This was when I decided I wanted to make it easy for the user and included a step by step process.

6. Publish the dashboard to tableau public server after several iterations (I must admit I publish a single dashboard at least ten times until I feel it looks good).

7. Make the Viz visible via twitter for the #MakeoverMonday community by posting a screenshot of my Viz along with the tableau public link.

What methods did you use to make these discoveries?

In general, my approach with the #MakeoverMonday Vizzes is to try something different every week, this way I get to practice different chart styles and learn how to create more advanced Visualizations.

It was interesting because, for this project, I initially wanted to create a radial bar chart that looked like a sun with a map of the U.K in the middle… I actually created this viz and after finalizing it, I noticed that I couldn’t really tell a story with this visualization, and realized that the radial bar chart was not the best option for this particular dataset and topic, so I had to start over again, and decided to use a more simplistic approach and used what is known as “Unit Charts” (These are charts used with different shapes to represent quantities). In this case, the shape I used was a simple filled square filtered/ colored by the menu price bucket.

So, to answer your question, I would say I used an exploratory method where I tried to convey the quantitative messages by using Unit Charts, ranking graphs as well as a Geographic/Geospatial map to display the location of the restaurants.

How are these discoveries going to be incorporated for future needs?

I hope this visualization would help the users in the U.K to decide what Wetherspoon restaurant to visit based on their location and their budget.

What was your favorite part of doing this project?

My favorite part of this project was to feel a sense of accomplishment when Tableau Public featured my visualization on their page and knowing that my Viz was going to be seen by thousands of people across the globe.

A second favorite part of the project was all the knowledge I acquired while working on this visualization; it was interesting that for some reason on this particular project I decided to try different things such as:

1. Create a radial chart, even though it was not my final visualization, I learned how to do it.

2. Create a guided Dashboard to walk the users through every step. This was my first time trying this approach.

3. Try for the first time Tableau Beta version 10.5 which has a great number of features including Hyper (To allow faster extract creation), Viz in Tooltip and export to previous version option.

This last point was very relevant to me, because while working with Version 10.5, I was having some difficulties publishing my visualization to Tableau Public server and almost gave up on this step, but my perseverance and sense of curiosity allowed me to figure out what the problem was and finally was able to publish my Visualization… I now realize that If I hadn’t persevered, Tableau Public would have never seen my Viz.

It is clear to see, the skills Paula acquired in her training through Level’s Data Analytics program were paramount in creating such a stunning visual presentation. Tableau is among the many different topics covered in our Data Analytics program. If you are interested in pursuing a career in the quickly growing field of Data Analytics, you can apply for our course here!