Cool Feature: Lookup Tables to Connect Related Details

Last Updated: Monday, October 31, 2016 by Laura Chisholm
two hands each holding a piece of a jigsaw puzzle

Executive Summary

Cool Feature: Lookup Tables to Connect Related Details
 → interlinks two tables to bring in added detail  → enables grouping by data found outside the original source table  → 100x easier than Excel vlookup function  → combines the power of relational database tools with the ease of Target Dashboard Approx. Skim Time: 1min 0sec ~ 150 wordsFull Read Time:4min 10sec~ 570words

Text Lookup

Who Needs It?

When you'd like to be able to group by data found in a secondary table, or when the additional detail of a second table would come in handy for charts, graphs and reports.

Some examples of text lookups include using:
    • an employeeID, productID or branchID to find employee, product or branch name
    • a country code or country to find country name, language, continent
    • a company name or ID to find company type, account manager or SIC code
    • a detailed expense name to find accounting nominal codes
    • a product code to find promotional code, discount, plus start and end dates
    • too many more to mention - the sky is the limit!

Text Lookups enhance your data by giving you capabilities to categorise, filter, sort, display additional information - all with the power of relational database technology without the hassle of using Excel vlookup or modifying a database query.

How Do I Use Text Lookups?

In the following example, we'll walk through step by step how to use our existing column COUNTRY in order to find CONTINENT, so that we can then group by continent, thus enhancing our dashboard charts, graphs and management reports capabilities. This situation assumes we have the two following tables, which we'll combine to give us the ability to group our sales vacancies by continent:
    a table of sales offices and vacancies, by country
    a table of continents, by country


Country Vacancies Table

table view of vacancies listed next to country location

Country to Continent Table

table view of country and continent, one per row

Text Lookup pulls data in from a secondary table.


Use the Table Designer to Add a New Column in Primary Table


Target Dashboard table designer add column shown being clicked


Popup where you select Add Text Lookup

text lookup popup box with choices shown as links


Click on the Text Lookup Table from Another Table, which will take you to the following wizard screen

wizard start button


From here you pick the table that you want to pull information from, this will enable further dropdowns that need to be populated

wizard column selection


When finished press save and close, and your table will now look like this

lookup complete

Used in Sales, Operations, Finance and More

Text lookups, and linking your data tables together, for added functionality and information, is just a few clicks away!

Whether it's categorising, sorting, filtering, or adding more detail and pulling in other important information, is a great way to quickly and easily add capabilities, without adding workload.

Please give it a try and see how easy it is to add a text lookup to your existing dashboard(s) or give us a call to discuss where it might fit with your data.

Easily link your various data tables so they can enable you to more quickly understand and make decisions, whether it's categorising, filtering, sorting, adding details about account managers, locations, products, promotions, client types or whatever you can dream of doing, using the text lookup function within Target Dashboard. No more vlookup nightmares, thanks to the easy to use features within your Target Dashboard software.

Let us know what you think. Is it something you'll use regularly? Anything you'd suggest to make it even easier or more insightful? Pop us an email to with your thoughts. Thank you!!

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