Intro to Data Elements

Workbooks support three element types: control elements (e.g. filters),  UI elements (e.g. buttons and images), and data elements. Data elements are elements built directly from a data source. They include tables, pivot tables and visualizations.

While each element type has its own style of data display, the underlying data itself is always column-based. 


Summary of Content

Element Creation and Data Sources
Editing Basics
      The Editor Panel
      Standard vs Focus View
Related Resources


  • To create a data element, you must have Can Edit access to the individual workbook and be in Edit mode.
  • Existing elements can also be seen in View and Explore mode. Learn more

Element Creation and Data Sources

Each workbook can contain multiple elements sourced from a variety of data sources. You can pull in new data sources at any time and are not restricted to a single source per workbook or workbook page. An element's data can be sourced from cloud data warehouse (CDW) tables, Sigma datasets, uploaded CSVs, written SQL, or other workbook data elements. 

Please note: Uploading CSVs and writing custom SQL are features only available to organization Admins and Creators. Learn more about account types.

Upstream Changes have an Impact.

If a data source is modified, any dependent elements may be impacted. For example, if Element B uses Element A as a data source, removing a column from Element A will immediately make that column inaccessible for Element B.

Ready to create your first data element?

Skip to our instructions for creating new data elements.

Editing Basics

The Editor Panel

When an element is selected, its configuration is automatically displayed in the workbook's editor panel. A data element's view in this panel displays all of the element's available columns.


By default, all columns are listed under the COLUMNS section. To configure your element, move columns to other sections listed in the panel, using either the section's + menu or dragging and dropping the column.


You can also view your source at any time by clicking the source popup button at the bottom of the editor panel while you element is selected. Use the source popup's vertical ••• menu to view, replace or edit your source.


Standard vs Focus View

All data elements have two interactive view modes: the standard view and the focus view. When an element enters focus view, it expands to take up the entire page canvas. 

Focused visualizations and pivot tables show both the element and a spreadsheet-like version of the element's data, called the focus view table. The visualization and its focus view table are linked – make a change to one and the other will react accordingly.

Focused tables, on the other hand, are simply a full page version of the table, as an additional focus view table would be redundant.

To open an element's focus view, click the maximize button in the element’s in-line toolbar (accessible on hover and when the element is selected). To collapse it back to its standard view, click the minimize button in the page toolbar.

Want to try it?  Hover your cursor over the bar chart below. Then click the maximize element button that appears at the top right corner of the element. This will open the element's focus view.

Related Resources

Workbooks: An Overview
Working with Tables
Working with Pivot Tables
Intro to Building Visualizations