Best of the new features Tableau has given us in the 2020.3 release

By Lee Ronan, Commercial Director, CSL

In the latest 2020.3 release key highlights are a new operator for calculations – IN, exporting to Crosstab and writing to external databases in Tableau Prep.
All data shown is illustrative.

IN operator for calculations

In the latest release tableau have included a new operator – IN. 

In its simplest form it can be used to generate a True/False column, rendering True if a specified value (Hosp, Hospital) is found at that row and False if it is not.

As with other operators its true power comes when combining with other functions like IF and Case statements.

Such as the below function to group similar source names together under the name ‘Hospital’.

Export to crosstab

Some users of dashboards prefer to get their hands dirty and to play around with data themselves. Exporting to crosstab has always been possible, however it is not always obvious to someone that is less familiar with Tableau Server to work out how, until now! 

To access this feature, you will need to drag in a ‘Download’ object from the ‘Objects pane’. Then right click and edit will bring up the following, opposite:

Under the ‘Export to’ heading there is now an option to export to crosstab along with the pre-existing export to PDF, PowerPoint and Image from Tableau 2020.1

With the options to adjust the button style to an image and adjust the formatting, users now have an easy to use, aesthetically pleasing button they can use to download data in a report form. 

Write to external databases in Tableau Prep

Tableau Prep is a very useful tool in allowing the preparation of data by joining, editing and cleaning. As a Tableau product it also allows for a seamless transition of clean, edited data into Tableau Desktop for dashboard development.

Since the launch of Tableau Prep, users have been able to export data into Tableau extracts and CSV’s, which are great for loading into Tableau Desktop but not ideal if the cleaned data is needed elsewhere in your organisation. This output format is also not ideal for users that are less familiar with Tableau Prep and are looking to test their development before creating dashboards.

The latest release of Tableau 2020.3 now allows users to seamlessly write prepared data directly into relational databases, saving processing time and any additional steps to get the data to where it needs to be. Prepared data can be written to:

SQL Server
Amazon Redshift

With more planned for future releases.

For a full list, including any feature I did not touch on, here’s the official announcement

If you want to know any more about how you could be using these new features in Tableau, please contact us on or read more about how our Tableau experts can support you here.


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