This week is Dashboard Week – every day, we gotta make a dash. For Monday, we were given property data… and I decided to make something simple, but flexible.

My first Dashboard is a comparative analysis of the six main states and territories in Domain’s data – everything except the Northern Territory and Tasmania. This compares the number of Bedrooms, Bathrooms, and Car Spaces, first as aggregates across states, then drilling right down to the house.


APIs can be difficult to wrangle. This one was fortunately very well-documented, which made it much easier to work with. Regardless, it took some time to format the text as I needed.

Part of this was due to nested properties. In some cases, listed properties were nested within projects – meaning that when the data was split into columns, data of one type ended up on multiple columns. This required multiple filters and formulas to fix the issue.

As for getting each of the state’s data, the matter as I wrote it was essentially running this workflow for each state I wanted data on. At this point in time, I did it simply by copying the exact workflow over and changing the state value. This was… not the best way to do it, but I was strapped for time, and happy with where my workflow was at. If I had more time, I would have turned the workflow above into a macro for easier repetition (or even better, a batch macro, as that could very easily make it all come together as one node – with little to no modification needed).

As it was, I did just copied the important part, and placed it down multiple times.

This only worked because I made sure my work was completely ready before I copied it. This meant that if there was an issue that I discovered afterwards, I’d have to manually fix all six copies. Errors like that would massively cost in time. So copying works… until it doesn’t.

On to the dashboard!

The dashboard I made using a whole suite of Parameter actions.

Here’s a pic of the Dashboard in it’s default state:

The B.A. Numbers up the top show the average numbers of Bedrooms, Bathrooms, and spaces for cars for all units. As we click them, the other charts change to that measure, using a Parameter Action:

Huh. SA is pretty high...

Clicking on a State in the left chart will narrow the charts on the left to just the relevant states.

Clicking on a Region will focus the map and bars down to a single region…

…which reveals that the reason SA has such a high average is at least partially because one residential address has space for THIRTY ONE CARS.

For some unfathomable reason.

This is all based on parameter actions. When you set up a parameter, you can have it’s value changed to match a value in a bar or mark you click on. You can make a parameter action by going to your desired dashboard, then clicking Dashboard > Actions > Add Action > Change Parameter.

All in all, this was a frantic, but fun challenge. I quite enjoyed this opening salvo of Dashboard Week. Today, our task has been to make something with Power BI – a tool we’re much less familiar with. This… should be interesting.

David Ruhnau
Author: David Ruhnau