Hi folks!

Welcome back to my blog. Today, we’ll be shifting our focus from Tableau to Alteryx. I’m excited to take on an Alteryx challenge and explore new tools with all of you.

In this particular challenge, we’re tasked with identifying the animal responsible for causing an electric disruption. To begin, let’s download the starting file for Alteryx Challenge number 286, titled “Who turned the lights off?” You can find the file at the following link: Challenge number 286: Who turned the lights off? 

For this Alteryx challenge, an input file and an expected output file will be provided. Based on the instructions, we need to determine the source of the electric disruption using the “Article Title” column, and we’ll be utilizing the list of animals from the “Operative” column.

Let’s go through the steps to solve this challenge:


Step 1: Group rows with known and unknown sources of electric disruption using the Filter Tool.

Separate the rows based on the “Operative” column as shown in the picture below:


Step 2: Utilize the reasons for the electric disruption from the “Operative” column obtained in the first step and group them by using the “Operative” column.


Step 3: Find the source of the electric disruption using the tables from steps 1 and 2.

To achieve this, we’ll use the Find Replace Tool. We’ll search for values in the “Article” column that match with the animal list. In the find anchor, we’ll input the table with unknown sources. For the replace anchor, we’ll input the list of animals. There are two configuration parts to consider.

In the “Find” part, we’ll specify what and where we want to find:

Select “Any Part of Field”

Find Within Field: Select “Article Title”

Find Value: Select “Animal”

Tick “Case Insensitive Find”

The configuration in this part means that we want to find any value in the “Article Title” column that matches the animal list, regardless of uppercase or lowercase alphabets.


In the “Replace” part, we’ll configure how the program should handle matches from the “Find” part:

Select “Append Field” and choose the “Animal” column from the Animal List table.


After running the Find Replace Tool, the output anchor will show the “Animal” column. We’ll then use the Select Tool to clean up the data before merging it back with the table that contains the known sources of electric disruption. Make sure that the resulting file has the same column names as the original table.


Step 4: Union the two tables together by using Union Tool.

To do this, we’ll use the “Auto Config by Name” option for the configuration.


Step 5: Determine the reasons for the electric disruption.

In this step, we’ll use the Summarize Tool and Sort Tool.

First, utilize the Summarize Tool to identify the reasons and count the number of recorded issues.

Next, use the Sort Tool to sort the recorded issues by count.

The final result can be seen in the picture below. We’ve identified 29 sources of electric disruption, and the highest number of issues was caused by Raccoons. Therefore, it is crucial to protect the electric equipment from Raccoons or control the Raccoon population in the city.

This completes the Alteryx workflow. You can download the completed workflow from the following link: Download Completed Workflow

That concludes this blog post. I’ll see you in the next one!


The Data School
Author: The Data School