Alteryx and Excel both are data preparation and analysis software that have been introduced to make our life easy and work smoothly. However, once I started to learn and to use Alteryx, I just can’t go back to Excel. In this blog, I would like to share my thoughts of using these two tools with you.

For those ones haven’t heard of Alteryx, Alteryx is strong in data extraction, transformation, loading, processing, analysis, and predictions in a code-free visual way. Below are the things can easily be achieved by Alteryx but can be very tough in Excel.


Import many sheets at once


If you ever had to bring data from many sources, such as a series of CSVs, it can be a pain in Excel. Especially when this is not just one-off thing. However, Alteryx has you covered. With Batch Macro or Dynamic Input to automate the process, Alteryx can make you life much easier.


Vlookup limitations in Excel


The VLOOKUP function is one of the most popular functions in Excel. However, the problem is there are various limitations of VLOOKUP in Excel but can be resolved in Alteryx.

  • VLOOKUP Only Looks to the Right
  • VLOOKUP Only Finds the First Match
  • VLOOKUP cannot lookup more than 1 column

All above limitations can easily be solved by using “find and replace” tool in Alteryx. For more details of this tool, please check out the Vlookups for Designer in Alteryx Academy under Interactive Lessons.

Automation and Repeatability


Another major benefit of using Alteryx is self-explanatory: develop workflow once, repeat at will. This benefit is crucial as data analysts often need to produce the same reports and tasks in a repetitive manner. You can even schedule the workflow in Alteryx Server, and you will also take care of the documentation along the way.

Complicated Data Analytics


When it comes to giving actionable and timely insights by analysing a combination of geospatial data, predictive models, as well as data visualizations, finding and using the appropriate functions in Excel can be a struggle. And very often, it requires a lot of knowledge and skills. With Alteryx, it is much easier to explore data, carry out in-depth data blending, as well as advanced analytics.


In short, Alteryx is a simple tool to learn and very friendly to beginners like me. If you ever wonder whether or not you need to learn Alteryx, I would say don’t hesitate, learn, and prepare yourself for the future!


The Data School
Author: The Data School