ICIS has over 30 years of experience in delivering pricing intelligence, news, forecasting and analysis on global petrochemical, energy and fertilizer markets. The company produces multiple daily and weekly insight reports covering key aspects of these markets, which its subscribers use to make informed buying, selling and investment decisions.
“Our journalists spend the majority of their time speaking to the industry and collecting price information on various commodities,” says Manca Vitorino, head of data operations at ICIS. “At the end of each day, they transform that information into price assessments using rigorous methodologies that help our customers understand how those prices might change tomorrow, next week or even next year.”
In order to do this accurately, ICIS’s editorial team requires fast access to a wide range of current and historical industry data, as well as the tools needed to analyze it quickly and efficiently. Prior to Tableau, the team relied on Excel for much of this, which often led to problems with data fragmentation, quality and accuracy.
“Excel is easy to pick up and use on a basic level, but without careful management, the process of manually analyzing data can become both time consuming and prone to errors,” says Manca.
“The first time I used Tableau, even with no prior experience I was able to create content that would be difficult in Excel. I knew this would be a valuable tool for our editorial team,” explains Manca.
With Tableau now in place, the ICIS editorial team has a central data platform where they can conduct in-depth data analysis and continue delivering detailed market insights with ease. In just a few clicks, they can download and compare historical pricing data across any time period they require, further adding to the insights of each report. This data can then be presented using intuitive Tableau visualizations that are easy to understand.
Tableau’s use hasn’t ended at the editorial team either. Since implementation in 2016, the number of users has grown to over 600 and includes several ICIS teams including editorial, sales, marketing, analytics, product and technology.
“Tableau’s ease of use, functionality and visual presentation, has made it a great tool for numerous divisions at ICIS,” says Manca. “In a short space of time, it’s become essential to nearly every aspect of our operations.”