Getting started: How to get the most out of Transform
Product Tips

Getting started: How to get the most out of Transform

Rahul Sompuram
Rahul Sompuram

With new tools, it can be tricky to know where to start. To help you get the most out of Transform, our customer success team curated a list of resources to jumpstart your learning. This guide will cover tips and resources for:

  1. Prioritizing metrics
  2. Building your first data sources & metrics
  3. Sharing metrics with colleagues
  4. Connecting Transform to downstream tools

Before you start on the steps below, deploy Transform with this Deployment Guide.

1. Prioritize your metrics to save time

Before you start building in Transform, we suggest that you prioritize three to four of your most-impactful metrics. Start with metrics that have the biggest business impact (like “recurring revenue”) or serve a set of use cases for a variety of teams (like “weekly active users (WAU)”). This prioritization exercise will help you understand how Transform works within the context of your organization and teams.

Before building these metrics out, gather all of the necessary information about those metrics. Outline your prioritized metrics within a spreadsheet, with the:

  • Tier (level of importance to the organization from 1-3; 1 as highest importance)
  • Metric
  • Table
  • SQL
  • Predicate
  • Time Dimension
  • Notes or additional details about the metric

This will help you see a comprehensive view of all of the factors that you need to consider when building your configs in Transform.

2. Build your first data sources and metrics

Once you’ve prioritized your most important metrics, you’ll want to start building! Conceptually, there are two main objects in Transform: Data Sources and Metrics.

Explore the following documentation pages to get step-by-step instructions:

  • Introduction to MetricFlow concepts: Before creating your first metric, it is helpful to understand key concepts within MetricFlow, Transform’s open-source metric framework. This guide outlines all of the terms referenced in MetricFlow and Transform, including the definition of a “metric,” and concepts like measures, dimensions, and identifiers. For more information, visit the glossary of terms.
  • Create your Data Source: First you’ll want to build your data sources, which are made up of identifiers, dimensions, and measures.
  • Create your first metric: Now that you've created your first data source, here comes the fun part—let's define your first metric. Transform supports the following metric types: measure proxy, ratio, expression, and cumulative.

In this Loom video, Analytics Engineer, Jordan Stein shares how to build a Transform data source from a table in your data warehouse.

Want a real-life metrics example? Check out this blog post on defining a revenue metric in MetricFlow, Transform’s metric framework.

3. Set up collaboration features to share metrics with colleagues

Now that you've defined your metrics in code in MetricFlow, you can view, query, govern, and build knowledge around your metrics in Transform's interface, the Metrics Catalog. Explore this blog post on adding context, questions, and metric owners with a real-life revenue example.

Metric owners can subscribe stakeholders to specific metrics.

Transform's user interface is broken up into a few main components: Homepage, Metric Page, Notifications & Subscriptions, Collections & Team Pages, and Settings (which includes organization and user-level settings). You can use these components to build a knowledge base for metrics in your organization.

Here are some important resources on best practices for the catalog:

  • Homepage: Start by understanding the Transform homepage, your landing zone for the metrics you care about. This homepage is customized to every user’s preferences.
  • Metric Page: Each metric in Transform has its own metric page. Learn about how to read the metric page and use key governance features like ownership, approval, tier, definition, and lineage.
  • Subscriptions and Notifications: People in your organization can subscribe to metrics they care about and get tailored notifications with context about the important changes to that metric. If you’re a metric owner, you can also add others to metrics. You don’t need to do any additional setup. Once you build a metric, this option is available to you and your stakeholders.
  • Collections and Team Pages: Collections allow you to aggregate a group of metrics into one page. This is a great feature that helps teams or cross-functional groups to collaborate.

4. Try out integrations with your downstream tools

People most likely interact with metrics in downstream tools—business intelligence tools like Tableau, Hex, and Mode or collaboration tools like Google Sheets. Transform makes it seamless to get the same metrics across all of these tools. Once you’ve built your metrics in Transform, you can test out our integrations with the tools you know and love.

Transform has integrations with a number of these downstream tools and we are continuously developing more. Visit the following documentation to get up and running:

  • List of supported integrations / setup: This list shows all supported integrations, with links on resources for each tool—including requirements, installation steps, and additional tips. You can also see information around schedulers like Airflow and Prefect.

Start exploring your metrics

We hope that this list of resources helps you get up-to-speed quickly with Transform so you can start seeing value from your metric store.

Visit our product documentation for further information and product deep-dives. For regular updates and product tips, subscribe to our blog and follow us on Twitter.