IMPORTANT: This document is specific to Sigma worksheets. We recommend trying out Sigma’s new Workbooks feature instead.

Worksheets are one of three available document types in Sigma, alongside dashboards and datasets. If you plan to do ad hoc analysis or create visualizations for future dashboards, you can expect to find yourself working in worksheets often. 

This article will introduce you to the basics of worksheets and their components.

Summary of Content

What is a worksheet?
Where does the data come from?
Anatomy of a Worksheet
      The Spreadsheet Interface
      The Formula Bar
      The Right Side Panel
            The Column View Panel
            The Data Source Panel
            The Visualization Panel
      The Control Panel
Related Resources

What is a worksheet?

Worksheets allow you to structure and manipulate your data. You can create calculations, group data, apply filters and formats, add parameters, etc. All of this data structuring takes place around a central spreadsheet interface. 

Worksheets are also home to visualization creation. All visualizations are created in worksheets prior to being added to dashboards. 

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Where does the data come from?

Each worksheet must be sourced from at least one data source in Sigma. Without a data source, there is no data!

Examples of data sources include tables from your organization's data warehouse, uploaded CSVs, and datasets

Sigma reacts to updates in your data warehouse in real time, which means the data in worksheets is always accurate and up-to-date

It is also important to note that you CANNOT corrupt the data in your warehouse when working in a worksheet. When you work with your data in Sigma, Sigma automatically generates a SQL query, under the hood. This query is sent to your data warehouse. Your warehouse responds with data matching your request. No changes are ever written back to your warehouse.

Anatomy of a Worksheet

The Spreadsheet Interface

Sigma’s spreadsheet interface is front and center in worksheets.

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While the spreadsheet looks much like traditional spreadsheets, there are a few key differences. 

Unlike traditional spreadsheets, in which you interact with individual cells, Sigma supports interactions on the column level. Calculations and formats are applied to every row in a column. This ensures calculations are kept consistent.

Column actions, such as formatting, can be applied to columns from the toolbar near the top of the worksheet and from the drop down menu on every column. Learn more about columns.

The spreadsheet gives you access to all rows in the worksheet’s underlying data source. You can check out the number of rows and columns in a worksheet by looking at the statistics listed at the bottom of the screen.

When you look at a worksheet, you may also see grouping levels represented in the spreadsheet. Creating leveled groups allows you to bundle rows of data based on common characteristics in select columns. Levels can be collapsed in the spreadsheet for a high level view of your grouped calculations. 

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The Formula Bar

Each worksheet has a formula bar positioned near the top of the page.

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Formulas are applied to columns, not cells. When a formula is applied to a column, it is applied to all rows in that column. 

Every column has a formula, including those that directly reference data from your data source. To view a column’s formula, select the column and its formula will automatically appear in the formula bar.

To create a new calculation in your worksheet, you should first add a new column then add a formula to that column. Learn more or get started with some of Sigma's most popular functions.

The Right Side Panel

The panel on the right side of any worksheet has three components: the column view, the data source list, and the visualization panel.

The Column View Panel

The column view panel contains the full list of columns in the worksheet. Unless they are marked as hidden, these columns are all visible in the worksheet’s spreadsheet. 

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From here, you can organize and group your worksheet’s columns into levels. As was mentioned in the spreadsheet section above, creating leveled groups allows you to bundle rows of data based on common characteristics in select columns. When you group your data from the column view panel, those groups will automatically be reflected in the worksheet spreadsheet. Learn more.

This column view panel also contains a section for worksheet totals. Totals are single value column aggregates that live at the top most level or a worksheet. Learn more.

The Data Source Panel

Click on the second tab in your worksheet’s right side panel to open the data sources panel. This panel displays the worksheet’s data source(s). From here you can edit and join data sources.

Each data source contains a list of its columns, so you may also add any missing data source columns to your worksheet from the sources dropdown column list.

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The Visualization Panel

Click on the third tab in your worksheet’s right side panel to open the visualization panel. This is where visualizations in dashboards originally come from. 

When you add or select a visualization from this panel, the visualization editor will open out to the left and the visualization will appear above the spreadsheet. 

Visualizations can be added directly to dashboards from this panel as well.

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The Control Panel

Worksheets have an expandable control panel on the left side of the screen. This contains worksheet filters and parameters. It also contains total values if any exist. 

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Related Resources

Create a Worksheet
Working with Columns
Using Levels and Groups
Visualize Your Data

IMPORTANT: This document is specific to Sigma worksheets. We recommend trying out Sigma’s new Workbooks feature instead.