Tech Impact Awards 2013: Analysis

September 24, 2013

Gianni Truzzi



Location: Seattle | Employees: > 900 |

Show, dont tell, goes the oft-quoted phrase, and its the chief principle behind Tableau Software, which went public in May with a stock valuation of nearly $2 billion. Tableau provides a set of tools to turn data sets into graphics that can be clicked on, expanded and rearranged to reveal new insights.

Corporate human resources departments use Tableau to spot patterns of employee attrition and hiring among divisions. The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice used Tableau to find patterns of recidivism. Schools in Spokane have boosted graduation rates by recognizing early signals from students.

Tableaus tools have adapted to the marketplace of mobile apps and cloud services, and predictive analytics features are a future goal. Yet the companys mission, to help people see and understand data, remains the same. How the company has really stuck to that has just made us more passionate, says Elissa Fink, Tableaus chief marketing officer.

Tableau cofounder and CEO Christian Chabot says part of that passion comes from relocating the firm early on from Silicon Valley to Seattle. In Silicon Valley, Chabot told Forbes, there is a lot of groupthink. Everyone sits in the same coffee shops and talk about the same things and knows the same investors. … Seattle is different and is a great canvas for creative thinking.

The best news for qualified job seekers is that Tableau continues to grow rapidly. In August, CFO Tom Walker told analysts that the company is hiring at a very healthy clip … and we are going to continue to do that.