Dynamic Field Renaming in Alteryx

In my work at TABS Analytics, I often find myself building re-usable alteryx workflows for processing sales data coming from syndicated sources such as Nielsen or IRI.  The goal is to build tools that can be applied to data coming from multiple different clients.  Though the basic content of the data is the same, the field names and format are often different depending on the client.  A basic measure such as sales dollars, could come with many different titles such as (Dollars, Sales Dollars, DOLLARS, Value Sales, etc.)  In this example I’m going to walk though how I use the dynamic rename tool to “iron out” these variations up front to avoid errors downstream.

Imagine that we have two different data sources with slightly different field names as shown below.

The goal is to build a workflow that can load both data sources, properly identify the fields, and process without errors.  In this case, the first thing we’ll need to do is rename the fields so that they are consistently identified throughout the rest of the workflow.  The standard Select tool won’t work since it will throw errors if you try to map two different raw field names to the same output name (i.e. mapping Dollars and Sales Dollars to both be renamed as just Dollars).

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