In order to use Tableau Public, we’ll need a Tableau Public account. The account will provide us with an online portfolio to showcase all of our presentation-ready work, and it can also store hidden in-progress work until it’s ready to be shared publicly.

For someone making a career change into data visualization with Tableau, Tableau Public is one of the best places to showcase dashboards and visualizations. If that applies to you, we suggest personalizing Tableau Public settings such as “Bio” and “Available For Hire” to make the most of your Tableau Public portfolio.

While it is possible to create visualizations in the browser by clicking “Create A Viz”, we also recommend using the desktop version of Tableau Public. (This is not the same as Tableau Desktop, which is Tableau’s paid version of the software.) The desktop version of Tableau Public provides a more user-friendly experience for dashboard building, as well as the ability to work offline.

With that, let’s set up an account and download the desktop version!


  1. Navigate to Tableau Public and click the “Sign Up” button. This will prompt you for some details including your name and email as a requirement to create your public profile and download the free Tableau Public Software. Tableau Public Sign Up After you confirm your details, you’ll see a welcome page.

  2. Take a look at your profile settings from here and upload an image for your profile picture if you wish. Some key profile settings are your “Bio” and “Available for Hire” options found at the bottom of your Edit Profile page. (Once you have some work to showcase, the Available for Hire option will add this button to your profile so potential employers can contact you.)

  3. Download Tableau Public for Desktop using the button at the bottom of your welcome screen. Tableau Public Get Started

  4. Once you have downloaded the software, install it on your machine by following the prompts.

  5. Now that we’ve downloaded and installed Tableau Public, let’s move on to the next exercise to open it and see what we can do!

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