Data Goes the Distance: Tableau & Transportation

By Michelle Wallace 06 Nov, 2014

Planes! Trains! Automobiles! These vehicles do so much more than get Steve Martin home for the holidays. The transportation industry powers our everyday life. And it's fueled by data.

Tons of companies are involved in travel processes—everything from manufacturing your car to flying you around the world. We recently interviewed three of these companies, each of which is using data differently.

When it comes to planes:

  • JetSuite is an award-winning private jet charter company. They decided to take a self-service approach to analytics, and found employees developing deeper connections to their work and key performance indicators (KPIs). “It’s a quantum leap in the way that we think about the business,” IT Director Steve Roy explained. When we visited their office, many JetSuite employees shared how Tableau Online is empowered quick, effective decisions across the company.
  • The national airline of Panama, Copa Airlines serves millions of travelers each year. But when they started using Tableau, they reached entirely new insights into traveler behavior. Employees also got more engaged in analysis. Says Wholesales Coordinator Roberto Del Rio Ayala, "Once you have access to the information so easily and quickly, you become much more creative—you want to manipulate the information, you want to retrieve more data." Hear more from the team in this Spanish-language interview.

And in the automobile world:

  • Audi AG is a worldwide auto company that manages everything from the car's design to its production, distribution, and marketing. Needless to say, they've got a lot of data! In the past, it took plenty of development time to analyze most data. Now, people from nearly every department are using Tableau Server. We spoke with Stephan Sachs (interview in German), who summarized the impact this has had:
  • "I can connect myself to every possible data source, but I can also mix in information from Excel very flexibly, and I can make my own presentation available without having to spend a great deal of time and effort doing all these things with two, three or four tools."

    As for everything else:

    In the transportation industry, data is vital to business. But it's also fascinating to look at! That's why we've seen so many people use Tableau Public with travel and transportation data.

    We just love this visualization of Melbourne's trains. So next time you travel—whether by bike, bus, car, train, or plane—think of all the data it took to get you there. Pretty cool, huh?


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