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Tableau – Joining data files with inconsistent labels

Last Updated : 10 May, 2020
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Designing good data has a fundamental principle of spreading the data out so that each data table stores the information about a particular business entity.
Let’s suppose that the model has a set of restaurants which are located in different cities. Each of these restaurants could have a restaurant ID, the restaurant city and the restaurant state. Another table has a list of workers for the entire restaurant chain with a field indicating which restaurant they are working at. So it is possible to link these two tables based on the common data attribute or field of restaurant ID (in this case).

But sometimes there can be a case that the field in common is having the inconsistent naming and then the data sources will not join automatically. This article aims to explain how to deal with this situation.

Steps to perform:

  • In the Tableau, connect to the databases.
  • The data source has three data files – Product, OrderDetails, PropertyInfo. These are three different excel sheet present in one data file.
  • Open Product data file.

  • Add OrderDetails data file, it contains the information about each order.
  • But now it can be clearly seen that the Tableau indicates that it can not find a match in the field names.
  • Actually there is a data field with exactly the same data in both the data sources. So that means that we can create an inner join for the two data sources.
  • Click Product ID, and then, over-under OrderDetails hover my mouse pointer over the field.
  • Click the down arrow, and from here click Prod ID, which is just a shortened form of Product ID
  • Close the dialogue box and now you can notice the data is perfectly joined.
  • Similarly you can join as many data sources you want and now the data is completely ready for the visualisation.

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