9 Power BI interview questions (with example answers)
Updated 25 January 2023
Power BI, which belongs to the Microsoft Power Platform, is a software that converts unrelated data sets into interactive and coherent results that you can interpret visually. Because this software is popular in the business intelligence industry, a hiring manager may ask you about it when you apply for a relevant position. Learning how to answer interview questions about this software can improve your employment prospects. In this article, we list nine Power BI interview questions and provide examples for you to study.
9 Power BI interview questions
Here are nine Power BI interview questions to review before your next job interview:
1. What is Power BI?
A hiring manager may ask this question to determine how familiar you are with this software. If you can show that you know what it is and that you've used it before, they may be more willing to consider you as a solid candidate for the available position. In your response, provide a brief definition of Power BI and explain its purpose.
Example answer: 'Power BI is a business analytics software that lets users convert several separate data sources into interactive, useful results. This software can incorporate data from sources like a cloud-based data warehouse, an on-site data warehouse or an Excel spreadsheet. It's possible to use Power BI to create data reports that you may share with anyone in an organisation. Power BI helps technical and non-technical users transform company data into valuable information that business leaders can use to make informed decisions.'
2. What are filters in Power BI?
Your response to this question can help a hiring manager determine how familiar you are with using Power BI. In your response, define the function of filters in this software. You may also list a few of the available filters in Power BI.
Example answer: 'In Power BI, filters are the logical and mathematical conditions that users apply to data so that they can filter out important information. It's possible to apply filters to both columns and rows of data. You may divide filter types into the data which you can see on the page. These three filter types are the report level filter, the page level filter and the visual level filter. Other filter types present in this software are manual, automatic, pass-through, drill-through, cross-drill, drill-down, exclude and include filters.'
3. What are some benefits of Power BI?
A hiring manager may ask this question to determine if you understand the reasons why the company's leadership chooses to make Power BI its main data visualisation tool. In your response, list several benefits of this software. Emphasise its ease of use for both beginners and experts in the business intelligence industry.
Example answer: 'One benefit of Power BI is that it's simple for beginners and experts in business intelligence to use. It offers accurate solutions quickly, and you can generate results just by entering simple keywords for any queries you have. Another benefit of Power BI is that it lets you convert raw data into visuals that are easy to interpret and share with others on your team. Still, this software forms connections for Excel queries so that you can conduct efficient analyses'.
4. What are some differences between Power BI and Tableau?
A hiring manager may ask this question to determine if you understand what distinguishes Power BI from other similar data visualisation tools. In your response, you can recognise that both tools are important in the business intelligence industry. You can strengthen your answer by explaining the key differences between these two software products.
Example answer: 'Both Power BI and Tableau are important data visualisation tools in the business intelligence industry, but they have a few key differences. For instance, Power BI uses Data Analysis Expressions (DAX), which is a collection of constants, operators and functions to generate return values. alternatively, while Tableau uses Multidimensional Expressions (MDX). Another key difference between these two software products is that Tableau can handle large volumes of data while Power BI's more limited. Still, another difference between these two is their interfaces. Tableau has a more intricate user interface, while Power BI's is simpler.'
5. What is a custom visual in Power BI?
Your response to this question can help a hiring manager determine how familiar you are with the different visuals in Power BI. In your response, you can state how custom visuals are similar to the traditional visuals within the software. You may also describe the element that makes the creation of custom visuals possible.
Example answer: 'A custom visual in Power BI is similar to any other visualisations that this software produces. The main difference is that Power BI uses a custom software development kit (SDK) to create each custom visual. Power BI implements the use of several programming languages to make the creation of custom visuals possible.'
6. What does GetData mean in Power BI?
When you answer this question during an interview for a business intelligence position, you can show that you're familiar with different functionalities within Power BI. In your answer, describe what this icon is. You can also reaffirm your familiarity with Power BI's use of various data sources.
Example answer: 'GetData is an icon within Power BI. It lets you import data from various sources. Upon clicking on it, you can import data from an Excel spreadsheet or any type of data warehouse, whether it's cloud-based or on your local device.'
7. Describe the different connectivity modes that Power BI offers.
Your response to this question can help a hiring manager assess if you've used Power BI with different connections before. They may use your response to determine if you'd require additional training before working in your role. In your answer, you can discuss the three main connectivity modes in this software.
Example answer: 'The first connectivity mode is the SQL Server Import mode. It lets an individual use Power BI desktop in its most complete form, as it grants access to the program's full capabilities. The second type i**s the Direct Query mode, which is only possible to use in certain instances. With you activate this connectivity type, the software only stores the primary data's metadata. The third type of connectivity mode is the Live Connection mode. In this mode, Power BI doesn't store data within its model. Instead, it sends queries to the Analysis Services model.'
8. Can you name some types of refreshes in Power BI?
A hiring manager may ask this question to determine how well you can work with data that constantly updates. In your response, name at least two types of refreshes. Provide a brief description of how they work.
Example answer: 'One type of refresh is the data refresh or the model refresh. This refresh lets you refresh a dataset within the software's service, and it uses data from the primary source. Another type of refresh is the tile refresh, which performs updates on the Power BI dashboard every 15 minutes.'
9. Can you describe how Power BI defines relationships between data?
There isn't a single way to define relationships between data in Power BI, so a hiring manager may ask this question to assess your knowledge. In your response, you can mention the manual and automatic methods. When discussing the manual method, be sure to mention the use of foreign and primary keys.
Example answer: 'Power BI can define relationships between data using one of two methods. The first method is the manual method, which involves the user entering foreign and primary keys to define relationships. The second method is the automatic method, which allows Power BI to locate relationships between tables. Upon the successful detection of these relationships, the software creates tables automatically without further input from the user.'
Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are associated with Indeed.
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