Tableau Display Measures in a Table


Building a table of measures in Tableau is straightforward. You can build the table using only two pills.

Use the dimension Measure Names and the measure Measure Values.

Build a table in Tableau using Measure Names and Measure Values

simple Tableau table using only Measure Names and Measure Values for headline numbers
Headline numbers using Measure Names and Measure Values

Follow these steps to build a simple Tableau table:

Step 1 is to set the Marks value to Text.

Drag the Measure Values pill into the Text area. This will then open a small section called Measure Values where it’s possible to drag, drop and re-order the measures.

Selecting the Square mark type also works.

This is actually how to create Tableau heat maps.

If using the Square mark type the Text area won’t exist. Instead, the Measure Values should go to the Label area.

To make into a heat map simply put Measure Values to the Colour shelf.

Therefore, Measure Values will be both on the Colour and Label.

Next put the Measure Names pill into the Columns section. This gives a title to all of the measure values.

Put Measure Names on Columns
Drag and drop measures using the Measure Values shelf

Now you have a simple table.

You can also drag dimensions to the Rows area if you want this table segmented – for example, a time period to show the measure values over time.

Using Measure Names / Measure values is one way to get around the 16 column limit Tableau imposes on tables.

Perhaps your requirements are more sophisticated than is possible using the simple Measure Names / Measures Values. It’s possible to build tables using the placeholder technique, which gives more flexibility.

Edit: since originally writing this post it has become possible to format each measure with a different colour scheme, this article details how to (partially) conditionally format your Tableau table.

6 thoughts on “Tableau Display Measures in a Table”

  1. Thanks, this was a great help. I was getting ready to go to Excel to create my table until I found your article.

  2. How do you sort a table like this? I have built a similar table and would like to sort it by the “Number of Records”. When I right click the “Measure Names” in the column shelf and select sort, it only allows me to sort by the names and not the measure values.

    • Great question. I assume if you want to sort the table you have a dimension on the Rows shelf? It’s this dimension that you want to sort, not the Measure Names, so right click the row dimension and select sort. If that doesn’t work another possibility would be to put the Number Of Records as a discrete dimension on the columns as the first column (i.e. to the left of Measure Names) and uncheck the ‘Show Header’ so it can’t be viewed. I don’t have Tableau with me to test either of these but one or both of these should work.


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