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Power BI Interview Questions

Power BI Interview Questions

Following is the list of most asked Power BI interview questions for fresher and experienced candidates to get the perfect BI job.

1) What do you understand by BI? Or what is BI?

BI stands for Business Intelligence. It is a technology-driven method that helps users analyze and visualize business data from thousands of data sources and share insights across their organization. It also provides important information that may help corporate executives, business managers, and other users make business decisions.


2) What is Power BI?

Power BI is a Business Analytics solution or a Business Intelligence and Data Visualization tool developed and maintained by Microsoft. It enables users to convert data from thousands of data sources into interactive dashboards, and BI reports.

Power BI is a cloud-based Self-Service BI tool that collects applications, multiple software connectors and services used to organize raw data into important content.


3) What is Power BI Desktop?

Power BI Desktop is a free business intelligence desktop application installed on your computer. Power BI Desktop works with the Power BI service by providing advanced data exploration, shaping, modeling, and creating a report with highly interactive visualizations. By using Power BI Desktop, you can easily save your work to a file or publish your data and reports right to your Power BI site to share with others.


4) What do you understand by self-service business intelligence (SSBI)?

Self-Service Business Intelligence or SSBI is an approach to data analytics that enables business users to filter, segment, and analyze their data without the in-depth technical knowledge in statistical analysis or business intelligence (BI).

The motive of SSBI is to make data analytics easier for end-users to access their data and create various visuals to get better business insights. It is easy to use, and anybody who has a basic understanding of the data can create reports to build intuitive and shareable dashboards.


5) What are the different parts of Microsoft's self-service business intelligence (SSBI) solution?

There are two parts of Microsoft Self-Service Business Intelligence Solution:

Excel BI Toolkit: Excel BI Toolkit is used to allow the users to create an interactive report by importing data from different possible sources and model data according to the report's requirement.

Power BI: The Power BI is an online solution that enables users to share the interactive reports and queries you have created using the Excel BI Toolkit.


6) What are the reasons behind the popularity of the Power BI tool?

Following is the list of most important reasons behind the use of the Power BI tool:

  • Power BI provides pre-built dashboards and reports for SaaS Solutions.
  • Power BI offers a secure and reliable connection to your data sources in the cloud or on-premises.
  • It also offers fast deployment, hybrid configuration, and a secure environment.
  • Power BI allows real-time dashboard updates.
  • It uses a natural language query to help us in data exploration.

7) What are the different important components of Power BI?

The various Power BI components are:

  1. Power BI Service:
    • Power BI Desktop
    • Power BI Services
    • Power BI Mobile
    • Power BI Gateway
    • Power BI Premium
    • Power BI Report Server
    • Power BI Embedded
  2. Power Pivot
  3. Power Query
  4. Power Map
  5. Power View
  6. Data Management Gateway
  7. Data Catalog
  8. Power BI Q&A

The components of Power BI are also classified as:

  • Data Integration
  • Data Processing
  • Data Presentation

8) What is Dax Function that is used in Power BI?

Dax Function is a formula expression language used with various business intelligence visualization tools like Power BI. It is also known as a functional language, where the full code is kept inside a function.


9) What are the different data types used in Dax?

Following are the Data types used in Dax:

  • Numeric
  • Boolean
  • DateTime
  • String
  • Decimal

10) What are the essential applications that use Power BI?

Microsoft Power BI is mainly used by the following:

  • Business & Data Analyst
  • PMO - Project Management Office
  • Developer & Database Administrator
  • IT Team, IT Professional
  • Consumer for End User Report
  • Data Scientists etc.

11) Is Power BI hard to Learn for a fresher?

Power BI is Microsoft's tool for data analysis and visualization. It doesn't require knowledge or experience of any programming language. A data analyst can quickly connect with any data source, summarizing the findings into simple reports without any programming experience. With Power Pivot built into the Power BI, analytics measures were developed using DAX query language from Microsoft.


12) How Important is Power BI?

Power BI is one of Microsoft's greatest data analysis and visualization tool developed and maintained. It provides dashboards, datasets, and reports that are the heart of Power BI. They enable users to create personalized dashboards combining cloud-born and on-premises data in a single view. It also allows monitoring the most important data enterprise-wide and from all their business apps. So, we can say that Power BI has a great impact on business intelligence and data analysis.


13) Is Power BI free to use or paid?

Power BI has two versions to use. Users can use the Power BI free version for free. However, there is also a Power BI Pro subscription version, which can be purchased from Microsoft Store. The purchased subscription provides an enhanced version of various features available with the free Power BI account. Most business users use the subscribed account as it offers more data refreshers per day and other features than the free version.


14) Is Power BI better than Tableau?

Both Power BI and Tableau allow the users to connect to distinct data sources. If we compare both, we find Tableau provides better support to connect to a different data warehouse than Power BI. On the other hand, Power BI is heavily integrated with Microsoft's portfolio, like the Azure cloud platform.


15) Is Power BI a better option than Microsoft's Excel?

Yes. Power BI is a more powerful tool as compared to Microsoft Excel. Power BI is easy to use and is much more flexible, while Microsoft Excel is not so handy to use. Power BI is mostly used for data visualization and dashboard sharing too many users, while Microsoft Excel is mostly used for in-depth driver analysis.


16) Is there a way to export from power BI to Microsoft Excel?

Yes, you can export any dashboard or visual data from power BI to Microsoft Excel. To export your data, choose the ellipses (3 dots) in the top-right side of any visualization and choose the icon: Export data. Your data is exported as an a.CSV file. You can even save and open the file in Excel.


17) What are the differences between Power BI and Tableau?

Tableau and Power BI are both unique tools to visualize the data. Power BI is best for applying visuals and modifying the data, while Tableau is best if you want to visualize the data only. Let's compare both of them:

Feature Power BI Tableau
Data Visualization Power BI mainly focuses on modeling and reporting. It is much easier to upload data sets with Power BI. It provides drag and drops features to make your work easier and effective. Tableau is the best tool for data visualization.
Cost Power BI is cheaper than Power BI. Tableau is costlier when compared to Power BI.
Deployment Power BI comes only with the SaaS model. Tableau provides more flexible and easily customizable features. It is available in both models, such as on-premises and cloud.
Data Analysis Power BI provides an in-depth analysis of the data because it allows us to create the relationships between the data sources. Tableau provides highly capable features that enable users to deal with real-time trends in effective data usage.
Data Handling Power BI is slow to handle vast volumes of data because it needs direct connections. Tableau is best for handling massive data sets and vast volumes of data.
User Interface The User Interface of Power Bi is simple and easy to use. Tableau uses a customized dashboard as a user interface.
Customer Support and Community Although Microsoft introduces power BI, it has a smaller community than Tableau due to its late entry into the market. Tableau has a bigger community.

18) Is Business Intelligence a Good Career Option?

Business Intelligence is one of the greatest career options nowadays. One of the biggest reasons for choosing a career in Business Intelligence is the on-demand outlook. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics report, the demand for expert BI managers and analysts is expected to leap to 14% by 2026, with the overall need for data professionals to climb to 28% by 2020.


19) Is Power BI hard to use for a beginner?

It doesn't require writing SQL code in Power BI like other BI tools. If you have good MS Excel knowledge, you can use this tool easily. It just requires a bit of MS Excel knowledge.


20) What is the cost of Power BI?

Power BI comes with mainly three versions: Power BI Desktop, Power BI and Power BI pro.

Here, Power BI Desktop and Power BI are free of cost. If you want to use the Power BI Pro, you have to pay $9.99 per month after a 60-day free trial.


21) What is the difference between Power BI and Power BI Pro?

Power BI provides some limited features to allow us to get started searching for data in a completely new way. On the other hand, Power BI Pro comes with some additional features like scheduling data, live data sources, storage capacity, along with complete interactivity and much more.


22) What do you mean by the term Power BI Desktop?

Power BI Desktop is a free business intelligence app. It is used to install on the computer system to work with the Power BI services. It offers shaping, modeling, data exploration, and report creation using high interactive visualizations. It also allows us to save all our work to a file to publish reports and data to the Power BI site that we can share with others too.


23) In how many formats Power BI is available in the market?

Power BI is available in 3 formats:

  • Power BI Desktop: This format is used for desktop computers.
  • Power BI service: This is an online SaaS (Software as a Service).
  • Mobile Power BI apps: This format is used for iOS and Android mobile devices.

24) Is there any online support available for Power BI for mobile devices?

Yes, Power BI supports mobile devices. You can download Power BI apps for iOS devices, Windows 10 devices, and Android smartphones. These Power BI apps can be installed from the below app stores:

  • Google Play
  • Apple Store
  • Windows Store

25) What are the main Building blocks of Power BI?

The main building blocks of Power BI are:

  • Visualizations
  • Data Sets
  • Reports
  • Dashboard
  • Tiles

26) What is Visualization in Power BI?

Visualization is a process of Power BI used to represent data in pictorial form like tables, graphs or charts based on the specific requirement.


27) What is a Report in Power BI?

The Report is a feature of Power BI, resulting from visualized data from a single data set. A report can contain multiple pages of visualization.


28) What are the data sources that support and connect to Power BI?

The following data sources support DirectQuery in Power BI:

  • Amazon Redshift
  • Azure SQL Database
  • Azure Data Explorer
  • AtScale (Beta)
  • Azure HDInsight Spark
  • Google BigQuery
  • Azure SQL Data Warehouse
  • HDInsight Interactive Query

29) What are the basic system requirements before using Power BI?

Before using the Power BI service for free, we must have a working email and a web browser installed on our system. By using this, we can easily explore data and create reports on Power BI Desktop. Go to the following store to download the Power BI mobile app:

  • Google Play
  • App Store
  • Windows Store

30) What is the difference between SUM() and SUMX() in Power BI?

Sum() specifies the sum function that takes the data columns and aggregates it totally, while SumX() specifies the SumX function that makes you able to filter the data you want to add.


31) What is the CORR function in Power BI, and when is it used?

CORR() is a correlation function used to provide a correlation between two distinct variables ranging from -1 to 1.


32) What do you understand by Power View?

Power View is a data visualization technique used to create interactive graphs, charts, maps and other visuals that makes your data more interactive. It is available in Excel, SQL Server, SharePoint, and Power BI.


33) What are the main advantages of Power BI?

Following is the list of top advantages of Power BI:

  • Power BI can be integrated well with any existing application.
  • Power BI contains rich and personalized Dashboards.
  • By using Power BI, you can securely publish reports.
  • Power BI provides quick access to data, which means there is no speed and memory issue.

34) What are the biggest disadvantages or drawbacks of using Power BI?

Following is the list of main disadvantages or drawbacks of Power BI:

  • Power BI does not mix imported data, which you have accessed from real-time connections.
  • Power BI cannot accept file sizes larger than 1 GB.
  • Power BI contains a dashboard that does not accept or pass user, account, or other entity parameters.
  • In Power BI, dashboards and reports can only be shared with users having similar email domains.

35) Which programming language is used in Power Query?

A new programming language called M programming language or M-Code is used in a power query.


36) What do you understand by the term 'M language' in Power BI?

M language is a programming language used in Power Query. It is a functional, case-sensitive and easy to use language. It is pretty similar to other programming languages.


37) What do you understand by the term responsive slicers?

Responsive slicer is used to save the space on the report page. It is very easy to resize a responsive slicer to various sizes and shapes on a report page. The data contained on it is also rearranged according to it. If the visual becomes too small, an icon representing the visual ability takes its place. So, it also saves space on the report page.


38) What information we need to have to create a map in Power Map?

We need to have some location data such as city, state, country or latitude and longitude to create a map in Power Map. This is required because power Maps are used to display geographical visualizations.


39) What are the important features of the Power BI dashboard?

Following is the list of Power BI dashboard:

  • Power BI dashboard facilitates you to go through the page, bookmarks, and selection pane.
  • Power BI dashboard allows you to create various tiles like web content, images, textbox, and integrate URLs.
  • You can also set the report layout to mobile view by using the Power BI dashboard.

40) How would you analyze Power BI reports data in Microsoft excel?

You have to follow the steps given below to analyze Power BI reports data in Microsoft excel:

  • First, open the Power BI Admin portal, go to tenant settings, and select -> Analyze.
  • Check if Power BI Administrator has enabled the Excel option or not.
  • Go to the upper right corner, click settings to download and install Excel updates.
  • Go to the left-hand side navigation pane, go to the workspace, click on the dataset, click on Eclipses (three dots) and select Analyze in Excel.
  • Download the ODC file, save, and double click on it.
  • At last, you have to provide a power BI user id and password.

41) What is the data source filter in Power BI?

A data source filter is used to filter the data before loading it into machines. It is a parameter used for data filtering.


42) What is the difference between older and newer Power BI?

The new Power BI tool contains a new design tool known as Power BI Desktop. It is a standalone designer, including Power Pivot, Power View and Power Query in the back end. On the other hand, the older Power BI contains excel add-ins. Besides this, there are several graphs available, including treemap, line area chart, waterfall, combo chart, etc., in the newer Power BI version.


43) What do you understand by the on-premise gateway in Power BI?

In Power BI, the on-premise gateway works as a bridge that helps transfer the data safely and securely, which is on-premise (not on the cloud).


44) What is the meaning of the term data alerts in Power BI?

In Power BI, the data alerts only work on data that is refreshed. When you refresh the data, the Power BI looks to see if an alert is set for that data or not. If the data has reached an alert threshold, it triggers an alert.


45) What is the use of the split function in Power BI?

In Power BI, the split function is used to split the string database on the given delimiter.


46) What are the main differences between Power BI personal Gateway and Data Management Gateway?

The Power BI Personal Gateway is used for reports that are deployed in Powerbi.com. On the other hand, a data management gateway is an app installed on the gateway on source data machines to deploy reports on Sharepoint and schedule to refresh automatically.


47) What do you understand by Power BI Designer?

Power BI Designer is a standalone app used to create Power BI reports and upload them to Powerbi.com. It is a combination of Power Bi components i.e., Power View, Power Pivot, and Power Query.


48) What are KPIs in Power BI?

KPIs stands for Key Performance Indicators. KPIs are used to evaluate the organization's performance in distinct areas by evaluating measurable goals and values. A KPI contains a measure or base value evaluated against target values and compares the performance with the target. KPI is also used to help you to evaluate the analysis performances with their graphical representation and specifies if your goals have been met or not.


49) What is the difference between Distinct() and Values() in DAX?

Generally, the Distinct() and Values() functions are the same in Power BI. The only difference between them is that the Values() function don't calculate null values, whereas the Distinct() function calculates even the null values.


50) What are the advantages of the direct query method in Power BI?

The Power BI desktop supports data visualizations on smaller sets. Its limit is a maximum of 1 GB. But the Direct Query Method facilitates the user to build huge data sets and data visualizations. There is no limit to the dataset for the direct query method, and a 1GB dataset limit is not applicable in this method.


51) What is the incremental refresh in the context of Power BI?

Incremental refresh is used to refresh the newly added data to avoid truncating and loading data.


52) What is the difference between a Filter and a Slicer?

Filters are used to restrict users and not allow them to interact with dashboards or reports, while the slicers are used to interact with dashboards and reports.


53) What are the different tabs in the Reports development Window?

The three main tabs in the Reports development Window are as follows:

  • Relationship tab
  • Data Modeling Tab
  • Report Tab

54) How many types of default Graphs (Visualizations) are available in Power BI?

There are around 26 types of default Graphs (Visualizations) are available in Power BI.


55) What is the difference between a new column and a new measure in Power BI?

In Power BI, a new column is an area where the physical data is stored when logic is applied. On the other hand, the measure is where the calculations are performed on the fly based on dimensions. The measure doesn't store any physical data like Column.


56) What are the different joins in Power BI?

There are mainly two types of joins in Power BI:

  • Horizontal Joins: Horizontal Joins are used to append data from multiple tables.
  • Vertical Joins: Vertical Joins are used to merge the data from multiple tables.

57) Is there any way to dynamically change the value measure to show multiple measures?

Yes. You can dynamically change the value measure to show multiple measures using the harvesting measure and switch function.


58) What is the need of signing up with a business email in Power BI?

Power BI does not support the email address given by telecommunications or consumer email service providers. That's why we need to sign up with a business email.


59) What is the usage of statewith() in Power BI?

In Power BI, the statewith() function returns the logical answers TRUE if the sub-string is the starting string for the superstring. If it is not, it will return false.


60) What is the Embed Code in Power BI?

The Embed code is an option in the Power BI service. It is used to generate a link address for the Power BI report and can also be shared across clients.


61) What is the Time Intelligence function in Power BI?

In Power BI, the time intelligence function is used to manipulate data using periods.


62) How can you hide and unhide a specific report in Power BI?

Follow the steps given below to hide and unhide a specific report in Power BI:

  • Go to the menu bar.
  • Choose Selection pane.
  • Select hide/unhide the report.