Top 30 Power BI Interview Questions and Answers for 2024

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Jan 05, 2024

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Step into the thrilling world of Power BI interviews and allow us to be your trusted guide through them all! We understand from anticipating nerves and the desire to showcase your Power BI skills. So here in this blog, we have carefully selected an array of interview questions designed to sharpen your skills and increase confidence; these range from basic to advanced levels. We do everything possible to prepare you for success in these thrilling interviews! So come with us on this empowering journey together as we unlock mysteries and realize full potential in Power BI interviews - let's do this together, and let us help prepare you! Get set! Let's embark together on this empowering journey as we discover mysteries within! Get ready!

This blog will be segregated based on three levels-

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Power BI Interview Questions - Beginner Level 

What is Power BI?

Power BI is a business analytics tool by Microsoft that enables users to visualize and analyze data from various sources. It allows users to create interactive reports, dashboards, and data visualizations to gain valuable insights from their data.

How is Power BI different from Excel?

While both Power BI and Excel are used for data analysis, Power BI is specifically designed for creating interactive visualizations and reports. It provides real-time data connectivity, advanced data modelling capabilities, and easy-to-use visualizations that Excel might not offer.

What are the components of Power BI?

Power BI consists of three main components: Power BI Desktop (used for report creation), Power BI Service (for publishing and sharing reports), and Power BI Mobile (for accessing reports on mobile devices).

How do you connect Power BI to different data sources?

Power BI offers various options to connect to data sources. You can import data from Excel files, SQL databases, and SharePoint lists or connect to cloud-based services like Azure SQL Database, Dynamics 365, or Salesforce. Power BI also supports direct querying and live connections to databases.

What is DAX (Data Analysis Expressions)?

DAX is a formula language used in Power BI to create calculated columns, measures, and calculated tables. It enables users to perform complex calculations and aggregations based on data relationships and hierarchies.

What is the difference between calculated columns and measures in Power BI?

Calculated columns are created at the data model level and provide a new column with values calculated for each row. Conversely, measures are used for aggregations like sum, average, or count and are applied to numerical data.

How can you create a relationship between tables in Power BI?

To create a relationship, you need to identify common fields (columns) in two tables and define a relationship between them using Power BI's Manage Relationships feature. This allows you to combine and analyze data from multiple tables.

How do you create a visual in Power BI?

In Power BI Desktop, you can create visuals by selecting the desired visualization type from the Visualizations pane and dragging and dropping fields from your data onto the visual canvas. You can then customize the visual's appearance and apply filters as needed.

What is the difference between a filter and a slicer in Power BI?

A filter restricts the data displayed in a visual based on specific criteria. A slicer, on the other hand, is a visual element that allows users to select values to filter multiple visuals simultaneously interactively.

How can you share Power BI reports with others?

Power BI reports can be shared using the Power BI Service. You can publish your report to the Power BI cloud service, set permissions to control who can access it, and then share the report's URL or embed it in other applications.

How can you schedule data refresh in Power BI?

To schedule data refresh, you need to configure the data source settings in the Power BI Service. You can set up a refresh schedule and provide the necessary credentials to ensure your data stays current.

Can Power BI connect to on-premises data sources?

Yes, Power BI supports connecting to on-premises data sources. You can use the Power BI Gateway to establish a secure connection between your on-premises data and Power BI Service, allowing you to access and refresh data from local sources.

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Power BI Interview Questions - Intermediate Level 


What is the difference between calculated columns and measures in Power BI?

Calculated columns are computed during data loading and create new columns in the table. On the other hand, measures are calculations performed on the fly, aggregating data based on the visualization context. Unlike calculated columns, measures are dynamic and adaptable to user interactions.

How can you optimize the performance of a Power BI report?

Performance optimization in Power BI involves various techniques such as data model simplification, reducing the number of visuals on a single page, minimizing DAX calculations, using query folding, and utilizing data compression techniques. Applying these strategies can enhance report rendering speed and user experience.

What are the different types of relationships in Power BI?

Power BI supports three types of relationships: one-to-one, one-to-many, and many-to-many. One-to-one relationships connect a single value in one table to a single value in another table. One-to-many relationships associate multiple values in one table to a single value in another. Many-to-many relationships connect multiple values in one table to multiple values in another table through a bridge table.

Explain the concept of row-level security (RLS) in Power BI.

Row-level security (RLS) allows you to restrict data access based on user roles and permissions. With RLS, you can define filters at the row level, ensuring that users only see the data they are authorized to view. This feature is particularly useful when dealing with sensitive or confidential data.

How can you create hierarchies in Power BI?

To create hierarchies in Power BI, you can select the desired columns in the Fields pane and right-click to choose the "Create Hierarchy" option. Hierarchies enable drill-down and drill-up capabilities within visualizations, allowing users to navigate through different levels of data granularity easily.

What is the purpose of query folding in Power Query?

Query folding is a performance optimization technique that pushes data transformations and filtering operations back to the data source instead of processing them locally in Power Query. By leveraging query folding, Power BI can delegate processing tasks to the source database, reducing the amount of data transferred and improving overall query performance.

How can you handle date-related calculations in Power BI?

Power BI offers several date-related functions and features to perform calculations on dates. Functions like DATEADD, DATESBETWEEN, and TOTALYTD can be used to calculate year-to-date, moving averages, compare dates, and perform other time-based calculations. Additionally, the built-in date hierarchy feature simplifies the exploration and analysis of temporal data.

What is the role of Power Query in Power BI?

Answer: Power Query is a Power BI data preparation and transformation tool. It allows you to connect to various data sources, apply transformations, clean and shape data, and load it into the data model. Power Query provides a user-friendly interface to perform ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) tasks without the need for complex coding.

How can you create custom visuals in Power BI?

Power BI provides the ability to create custom visuals using the Power BI Visuals SDK. With this SDK, developers can build and deploy their custom visuals to enhance data visualizations beyond the built-in options. Others can share and use custom visuals in Power BI reports and dashboards.

How can you schedule data refresh in Power BI?

Data refresh in Power BI can be scheduled using the Power BI service. You can configure a refresh schedule in the dataset settings based on the data source and desired frequency. Power BI supports various data refresh options, including direct query, import, and on-premises gateways, ensuring your data stays current.

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Power BI Interview Questions - Advanced Level 

What are the benefits of using Power BI DirectQuery mode over Import mode?

Answer: Power BI DirectQuery mode allows real-time connectivity to the data source, eliminating the need to import and refresh data. The benefits include up-to-date data, reduced storage requirements, and the ability to leverage the underlying database's processing power for complex calculations. However, DirectQuery may result in slower query performance than Import mode, which preloads data into Power BI.

How can you optimize Power BI performance for large datasets?

You can implement several techniques to optimize Power BI performance with large datasets. These include using DirectQuery or Composite models, enabling query folding to push processing back to the data source, leveraging data partitioning and aggregations, minimizing calculated columns, using relationships instead of lookups, and employing query filters to reduce data volumes.

What is the difference between calculated columns and measures in Power BI?

Calculated columns are created at the data model level, and add new columns to the dataset. They are computed during data refresh and consume memory. On the other hand, measures are calculations performed on the fly during visualizations and don't require additional memory. They are typically used for aggregations and calculations like sums, averages, or ratios.

How can you implement row-level security in Power BI?

Row-level security (RLS) in Power BI allows you to restrict data access based on user roles. You can create roles and define filters on tables or columns to implement RLS. These filters dynamically limit data visibility based on the current user's role, ensuring that each user sees only the authorized data.

Explain the concept of drill-through in Power BI.

Drill-through allows users to navigate from one report page to another, focusing on specific details. It enables users to drill into more granular data or view related information. You can define drill-through actions by specifying source and target pages and the fields to pass as filters, providing users with an interactive and contextual experience.

How can you create custom visuals in Power BI?

Power BI supports the creation of custom visuals using the Power BI Visuals SDK. By utilizing development tools like TypeScript and D3.js, developers can build custom visuals with unique functionality and visualizations. These visuals can be imported into Power BI reports and dashboards to enhance data representation and analysis.

Explain the concept of hierarchies in Power BI.

Hierarchies in Power BI allow you to organize and navigate data based on levels of granularity. They enable drill-down and drill-up capabilities, providing users with a structured data view. By defining hierarchical relationships between columns, you can easily explore data at different levels: year, quarter, month, and day.

How can you handle complex data transformations in Power Query?

Power Query provides robust transformation capabilities in Power BI. You can leverage advanced features such as conditional columns, custom functions, merging queries, unpivoting data, and applying transformations using the M language to handle complex transformations. Power Query's intuitive interface and extensive transformation options make it a powerful tool for data preparation.

What is the difference between calculated columns and calculated tables in Power BI?

Calculated columns are computed at the row level and add new columns to an existing table, while calculated tables are generated by defining new tables using DAX expressions. Calculated columns expand the existing table with additional derived data, while calculated tables create new ones based on specified logic or calculations.

How can you share Power BI reports and dashboards securely?

Power BI offers several secure sharing options. You can publish reports to the Power BI service and share them with specific individuals or groups, granting them view or edit access as required. Additionally, you can leverage workspace collaboration to collaborate with colleagues and control access rights at the workspace level. Power BI also integrates with Azure Active Directory for enhanced security and user management.


Mastering Power BI is crucial for a successful career in data science. By delving into the top 30 Power BI interview questions and comprehensive answers provided in this blog, you have equipped yourself with the knowledge and confidence needed to excel in your interviews. Remember, continuous learning through data science courses, data science certifications, and data science training will further enhance your expertise. Embrace the journey of continuous growth, and let Power BI be your gateway to unlocking new horizons in the exciting world of data science.

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