October 20, 2020

KPI Design Ideas for Tableau

By Luke Stanke

Here are 15 ideas and sources of inspiration for designing your KPIs for Tableau.

For a very long while I’ve been collecting KPI design ideas. Specifically, I wanted to include. For all the examples I am using Tableau’s Sample – Superstore dataset. If you are looking for additional inspiration I’d suggest this post

The design inspiration for these KPIs ranges from designs for client projects to Tableau Zen Master blog posts to tech company use.

Idea #1: My First KPI

I went back to my first dashboard I made as a consultant and re-created the design. This KPI included the monthly metric plus the year-over-year change.

Idea #2: Left-Aligned KPIs

A slight change to the above KPI but making it left-aligned.

Idea #3: KPIs with Gantt Indicators

In this example, we use color to highlight the success of the indicator.

Idea #4: Color Background

Sometimes I want to call out my my KPIs from the rest of the dashboard. I do this by changing the background color. The “off-white” color is actually a lighter hue of the background color.

Idea #5: Button Cards

Sometimes it’s useful to turn the KPIs into buttons. This can be done by adding an outline.

Idea #6: Client-inspired KPIs

Font type, font color, and spacing can completely change the look-and-feel.

Idea #7: Tableau Magic KPIs by Toan Hoang

This KPI is directly from Tableau Magic. I love this design. Great tutorial too!

Idea #8: Data Blick KPIs by Anya A'Hearn

For this design, I was inspired by a Mobile Dashboard design blog by the Data Blick team and used a similar approach.

Idea #9: Google Inspired KPIs

When I am looking for KPI design inspiration, I always take a look at KPI design done in by Google.

Idea #10: NYTimes-Inspired KPIs

When the stock market started seeing volatility during March of 2020, the New York Times started showing change in the stock market. I thought the design was extremely professional and really fit the finance vertical. I had to re-create.

Idea #11: KPIs by John Emery

My colleague, John Emery, worked on a dashboard where the KPIs ended looking similar to this idea.

Idea #12: Percent-to-Plan KPIs

My only example that is different than all others is the percent-to-plan dashboard. This dashboard tracks progress toward a goal.

Idea #13: Refactoring-inspired KPI

For these KPIs, I was inspired by Refactoring UI. This KPI style is difficult to re-design, but totally worth the final outcome.

Idea #14: KPIs by Tableau Zen Master Adam McCann

Adam wrote a blog and created a dynamic KPI metric. Re-creating this design does take time but is jam-packed with great information.

Idea #15: Twilio-Inspired KPIs

For the last example, I was recently working on Twilio and decided to re-create their dashboard KPI design. The arrows–unlike all other designs–use shapes over text.

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The following are just examples of how you can make tables pop. To take a closer look, feel free to download the workbook here.

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