Priority and deadline planning - The MoSCoW method applied to Tableau

by Vikash Bhardwaj

A key element of consulting is priority and deadline planning. This technique helps to plan out your workload and prevent the short term scope of the project from ballooning.

During the planning and building phases of Tableau I have always continued to have ideas on how to make the dashboard more engaging and appealing. This could be by adding different actions, displaying data differently or going in a different direction. 

The issue with these tangents is that the time spent exploring can often waste more time than expected which makes the project more difficult, especially if the timeline is tight. 

This technique helps and simply splits up your ideas into 4 categories;

When you have ideas about the dashboard you can assign the idea to one of the four categories and then work down the MoSCoW list. 

Applying this to building dashboards in Tableau;

Must Have – The core ‘what if’ of the analysis

Should Have – Important concepts which arn’t core but would add significant value

Could Have – Nice to have, but wouldn’t go unnoticed 

Would Have – Concepts that would be nice, but not a priority in the time alloted

If you have the ‘Must-haves’ ready and built, which would form the absolute core of the analysis, then you will have something of value to present. Then you can work down the list and add everything you can in the time you have.

By grouping the information from top to bottom you’re able to order what you’re building to create the most important aspects first. In the engineering world this would be a MVP (minimum viable product) but I feel this concept also applies well to Tableau.

The variation in hierarchy definitions give you some room to decide when to start building something whilst also being conscious of having something deliverable. 

Hopefully you would be able to put everything you like into your dashboard but, if not, I hope this technique helps!

If you have any suggestions or other ideas feel free to comment below, or contact me on LinkedIn or Twitter @vikb03.

Thanks for reading!


Vikash Bhardwaj

Tue 12 May 2020

Fri 24 Apr 2020

Fri 24 Apr 2020

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