Using a Pie Chart

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1. Overview

A pie chart is a data visualization that displays each value as a part of a pie or donut that represents its percentage of the total. Multiple hierarchies and levels can be displayed by a pie chart using outer rings.

2. Add a pie chart from the toolbar

To add a pie chart to your dashboard, go to the toolbar, click Data Visualization, and then select Pie / Sunburst. An empty pie chart is added to the canvas.

Add a pie chart from the toolbar
Add a pie chart from the toolbar

Go to the Explore window and expand a data connector. Drag a measure column onto the empty pie chart. The chart will show a single pie slice representing 100% of the total.

Drag a measure column onto the empty pie chart
Drag a measure column onto the empty pie chart

Next, add a row hierarchy by dragging the sales territory Name column onto the pie chart. You'll see the pie chart animate into multiple slices where each slice corresponds to the percentage of total for each row hierarchy value (e.g., territory).

Add a row hierarchy to the pie chart
Add a row hierarchy to the pie chart

Switch to View mode and hover over a pie slice to see a tooltip showing the measure value and corresponding percentage.

Tooltip for a pie slice
Tooltip for a pie slice

As another example, if the row hierarchy added to the pie chart has multiple levels, you can drill down, drill up, or change level in the pie chart by right-clicking on a pie slice (data point) in View mode. (On a tablet, use long-tap in place of right-click.)

Drill down on a pie slice
Drill down on a pie slice

After drill down on 2006 data point
After drill down on 2006 data point

3. Re-visualize as a pie chart

You can re-visualize a table or other type of data visualization from its context menu. Select the Pie/Sunburst option and the visualization will be changed to a pie chart accordingly.

Re-visualize a table as a pie chart using context menu
Re-visualize a table as a pie chart using context menu

Table is now displayed as a pie chart
Table is now displayed as a pie chart

4. Create a sunburst chart

A sunburst chart displays multiple hierarchy levels using concentric rings. The innermost rings correspond to the top hierarchy levels (e.g., years or product category) whereas the outermost rings correspond to the bottom hierarchy levels (e.g., months or product subcategories). As you move outward from the center of a sunburst chart, the pie pieces get broken down into smaller and smaller pieces. Sunbursts are considered similar to treemaps but with a different layout.

To create a two-level sunburst chart, first add a measure to an empty pie chart.

Drag a measure column onto the empty chart
Drag a measure column onto the empty chart

Drag the top hierarchy level onto the chart. This will form the inner ring.

Drag the top hierarchy level onto the chart
Drag the top hierarchy level onto the chart

Drag the bottom hierarchy level onto the chart. This forms the outer ring and completes the sunburst chart.

Drag the bottom hierarchy level onto the chart
Drag the bottom hierarchy level onto the chart

4.1. Multiple row hierarchies

Instead of adding different levels from the same hierarchy, you can also create a sunburst chart by adding multiple row hierarchies (e.g., add Product hierarchy first, and then add OrderDate hierarchy).

Sunburst chart with inner ring showing products (product categories) and outer ring showing order date (years) grouped by product category
Sunburst chart with inner ring showing products (product categories) and outer ring showing order date (years) grouped by product category

4.2. Multiple measures

It is also possible to add multiple measures to a pie chart. This will result in a ring for each measure, as well as a separate series for each measure. However, this type of visualization is generally not considered to be a sunburst and there is no guarantee that the slices of one series (ring) will match up with the slices of another series.

Pie chart with two measures
Pie chart with two measures

5. Add a legend

When you add a legend for a pie chart, a legend item is generated for each pie slice (data point) instead of each series or grouping.

Pie chart with legend
Pie chart with legend

6. Properties

Pie-specific properties can be found on the pie chart's series. Open the Properties window, and click Series 1.

Pie chart properties
Pie chart properties

Then click Layout to see pie-related properties.

Pie series layout properties
Pie series layout properties

6.1. Outer Size

The Outer Size property specifies the size of the outer edge of the pie as a percentage of the available space.

Outer Size property
Outer Size property

6.2. Minimum Outer Size

The Minimum Outer Size property specifies the smallest percentage of the available space that the pie can be reduced to in order to fit labels.

6.3. Donut Hole Size

Use the Donut Hole Size property to create a hole in the center of the pie chart.

Donut Hole Size property
Donut Hole Size property

6.4. Start Angle

The Start Angle property specifies the angle of the start of the first pie slice, measured in degrees from North.

7. See also

Dundas Data Visualization, Inc.
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