Three days into our journey here at The Data School and every single person is thinking the same thing: how have we never heard of Alteryx? After learning some Alteryx, it is not hard to see how Alteryx is changing the landscape of data analytics.
As data exponentially increases and organizations gather more (input), the goal is to derive insights from the data (output). However, as we have discovered in our own journey of using Tableau, much of the work comes from the cleaning and prepping of data. Through our first week, I think everyone in DSAU7 has been a little blown away by the platform. (You can see this in the other blogs!)
So how is Alteryx changing the data game?
1. EASE OF USE
While we all started together with Alteryx, we’ve made some already significant progress in learning the fundamentals of the platform. This has been mostly due to the intuitive and helpful interface of the workflow and the tools (and the great coaching of course!). Everything from the colour-coding categories to the sample demonstration of workflows makes the experience of learning easier. (TIP: Use F1 while selecting any tool to pull up the help page on Alteryx)
There is a lot of information and tips that makes utilizing the interface and creating new workflows seamlessly. Inputting data and fundamentally changing it all happens within a couple of clicks and small widgets. This ease of use makes handling huge amounts of different types of data seem manageable. As a result, Alteryx makes deriving meaningful insights from seemingly useless data seem easy and efficient. However, just because it is easy, does not mean that it is basic!
2. MAXIMUM POTENTIAL
Although Alteryx has a relatively gentle curve to learning it, the scope of what you can do with it is incredibly high. Even with basic workflows and data packs, Alteryx has already changed the way we perceive what we can do with data. With the tools, macros and self-created tools, the skill ceiling is huge. For every simple tool to do a basic task, there is another seemingly more efficient way of achieving the same result.
This has been one of the most satisfying things about learning Alteryx. Because of the endless tools, there is a wide variety of techniques/methods to discover and learn. Every person’s solution to each challenge is slightly different and as we discover more of what Alteryx can do, there is a growing sense of the power of the platform. So Alteryx is easy to use, difficult to master but how does that benefit Data Analysts?
3. TANGIBLE BENEFITS
At the end of the day, the most exciting thing about learning Alteryx is getting a sense of how it can produce tangible benefits. Alteryx has been designed specifically to solve the inefficiencies of doing manual spreadsheet work and repetitive tasks. As a bunch of (Ex)excel users, it is really easy to see this philosophy in action. However, it is so much more than just an excel substitute. Ateryx can analyze any inputs and very easily create useful outputs. The outputs are then ready for use in visualization and the creation of meaningful benefits. We’ve only just scratched the surface of what we can do with the data that we have but having Alteryx in our arsenal is definitely a game-changer.
From our little experience with Alteryx so far, it has been the start of an exciting adventure into the world of Data analytics. As students from a variety of different backgrounds, the best part of TDS is learning practical and actual client-facing relevant skills. Everything that we are learning is changing the way we will see, use and analyze data. Alteryx is just one example of the handful of things that we learning in our journey that will hopefully lead us to become better Data Consultants!