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Visual Awesomeness Unlocked – Sankey diagram

Headshot of article author The Power BI Team

By Amir Netz, Technical Fellow and Mey Meenakshisundaram, Product Manager

Everything flows and Flow is everything.  It’s easy to say ‘Go with the flow’ but first you must know where the flow goes. OK, enough with pun on the word “Flow”. Understanding information flow and dominant contributions to an overall flow are critical aspects for analyzing efficiency or lack thereof in business analytics. Sankey is an exciting, beautiful, gorgeous, efficient, informative (add any adjective that you like here) visual for the flow.

Fittingly they are used widely in the energy industry.  But it finds interesting use cases across all industries. It energies everyone to visualize information that has a start and an end or dynamic relationship with many intermediaries, for ex how the user landed and navigated in a web site, or a material in a manufacturing unit, control or money transfers in business processes in a completely different perspective and bring interesting insights to the forefront.

With Sankey, you can clearly find the sources, destinations and steps in between and how the stuff flow across them all in one quick glance. You can also interact with it either by clicking the link or the flow itself and leverage the cross highlighting/filtering feature of Power BI to get even more interesting insights in related data.

To use, simply download the Sankey diagram from the Visuals gallery and import it to your Power BI report and use it .

As usual, we can’t wait to hear your thoughts and your ideas for improvements.