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Workspaces doesn't work for analysis as well as Ad Hoc


Level 1


A little too much effort was put into making it pretty, and not enough effort into making it practical for analysts.

It feels like it tried to be the best of both worlds, but it is below average with either…. average dashboarding abilities in tool, and less than average ability to do analysis.

Getting rid of Ad Hoc, and rather than building off-of and enhancing the platform most clients use for business analysis, is a mistake.


It feels like it is built with touchscreens in mind... Analysts don't work like that. Real Data Scientists would laugh at you outright.  We need speed, keyboard shortcuts, and to be able to construct data sets quickly, rather than pretty drag-n-drops.

It's slow, in that everything takes a lot of clicks to get through. You can't even effectively copy-paste (it works sporadically).  I can make a trended chart in half the time in Excel, with less work on my part.

Often times, I need to do my analysis in other tools, such as excel, R, Python, etc. 200 rows doesn't cut it. 

Now you may be thinking - use Data Warehouse for your big pulls... ahhhh but there's the rub...you lose 100% of your agility... Need it by day?  One pull.  Wait 20min.  Need it by day by device to chase a hunch?  Second pull, wait 20min.  Warehouse only works if you’re confident you know all of your inputs in advance, and then you can’t put segments on individual columns, so if I need a data set like that, I’m out of luck.

It is better at doing dashboards in-tool than previous tools, but lacks polish like Tableau or PowerBI

If you do more than one breakdown, workspaces is virtually unreadable, and unusable for the uninitiated, because you can't quite make out what is broken down by what, (because light grey on light grey is a fantastic color scheme for an iphone, but I have to do actual work, not just look good).

When breaking down, it puts too much effort on the user.  If I need to see Day>Device>Department, I have to go in and manually break down each Device by Department, and then go back, click the “5” and turn it to “25” on every single totals row (which as stated above, looks exactly like a non-total row).

Ad Hoc is pretty much the only tool to be able to do medium size pulls effectively, be able to visualize it, and be able to construct data sets, and you are decommissioning it - and it's pretty much the go-to for analysts beyond novice level - Not a good move in my opinion.



Employee Advisor


Hi Justin, thank you for your candid feedback.

Ideas are for single enhancements (big or small) that can be introduced in a future release. An idea would be things like 'change the color scheme to something other than light grey', or Allowing more than 200 rows of data in Analytics Workspace​. That way, product managers can approach each of these features and discuss them in detail.

Since this doesn't align with what idea threads are designed for, I'm going to go ahead and archive this idea. However, I want to make sure you know that we still want your voice to be heard. If you want to start a discussion on all the things ad hoc does better than workspace, I would love to see what others have to say, even if most of the conversation is criticism towards workspace. If you want to submit additional ideas, feel free to make as many as you'd like, just keep in mind that upvoting and commenting on existing ideas is much more effective than duplicate ideas.

Honest feedback like this is something that we would love to see more of; we just want to make sure it is organized and structured in such a way that encourages discussion and allows product management to effectively make decisions. Thanks!


Level 1


Thanks for the follow-up Gigazelle, sorry about the diatribe – it’s holiday

I’ll take a look at restructuring this into something that will engage discussion, and start a discussion thread on it.

Thank you!


Justin Harrington | Lead Digital Analyst

T: 980.949.2024 | Justin_Harrington@belk.com

2801 W. Tyvola Road Charlotte, NC 28217