With massive amounts of data being processed every single day and needed to be analyzed, businesses require data analysts more than ever in this modern data-centric world. In this article, we will talk about how Power BI helps businesses and individuals exponentially increase their foresight, take data-backed decisions or tackle problems through analytical skills of human assets and the suite of Power BI tools. A well-reputed Power BI course can help a data analyst utilize Power BI to its full extent and understand the fundamentals of the domain. We will also talk about the skills required to crack the Power BI exam (officially referred to as ‘DA-100’) along with the different elements of Microsoft Power BI.
What is Power BI?
Power BI was initially developed as Project Crescent, a business intelligence and analytics service created by Microsoft in 2011 bundled with and based on the SQL Server 2012 (codenamed Denali). It was finally unveiled in 2013 to the general public as Power BI for Office 365 keeping the same focus on data mining and with business intelligence in mind.
Power BI was initially based on Microsoft Excel elements like Power Query, Power View, and Power Pivot. The following releases of this efficient business analytics environment witnessed the introduction of features such as additional security elements and enterprise-level data connectivity through Power BI gateways. It aims to provide interactive visualizations and business intelligence capabilities with an interface simple enough for end-users to create their own reports and dashboards.
Further, Power BI is a set of applications, services, and software support that can analyze unstructured and unrelated data and gain interactive, visually immersive insights. Power BI connects to data sources and analyzes the importance of subjects and shares the results with the organization or team.
Besides, Power BI contains three fundamental elements that work together to create the Power Bi experience:
- A Windows environment based desktop application known as Power BI Desktop
- An online Software as a Service or SaaS service named as the Power BI service
- Power BI mobile applications for Windows, iOS, and Android devices
These applications and services combined together let businesses gain valuable insights from data. And, this is designed to effectively share details with the required teams and individuals.
Beyond these fundamental components of Power BI, two other elements are also there which help create reports and then publish them. These two are:
Power BI report builder: It is used to create paginated reports which can be shared through the Power BI service. A paginated report displays every piece of data inside a table and is formatted to fit perfectly on a page even if spanning through multiple pages. Paginated reports are also known as ‘Pixel Perfect’ due to being able to have control over the page layout of the report.
Power BI report server: It is a report server that is on-premise where Power BI reports can be published after being created on Power BI Desktop.
An introduction to Power BI certification
The much-acclaimed Power BI certification can be gained by clearing ‘Exam DA-100: Analyzing Data with Microsoft Power BI’. This certification is very alluring for companies who work with Power BI and are looking for data analysts adept in data mining with expertise in Power BI. This is a Microsoft certification that validates an individual’s significant hold over Power BI fundamentals. A good Power BI course can definitely assist a budding analyst with this certification. Exam DA-100 is the certification part of this learning path which eventually leads to a Microsoft-certified Data Analyst Associate certification.
Data analysts trained in Power BI help businesses effectively utilize their data assets using the analyzing and extraction capabilities of Power BI. Employers look for data analysts with Power BI certifications to entrust the responsibility of designing and building data models which are scalable. The Power BI certification is assuring to an employer as in their mind, it ensures that they can be tasked with the cleaning and transformation of data which enables the data to be analytically processed that allows organizations to gain valuable insights through visualizations. Data analysts are also responsible for conversing with stakeholders and their requirements via visual representations and insights.
There are a few skills and key elements of Power BI that a future Microsoft-certified data analyst attending Exam DA-100 is expected to have expertise in. The Power BI certification exists to validate the hold the data analyst has over Power BI and satisfy this fundamental concern of future employers and organizations. Here are the essential five areas which need to be covered in order to crack the Power BI certification:
Preparing data: A budding analyst should learn how to use Power Query and extract data from various sources. The initial things to be covered when learning Power BI is to choose the storage modes, connectivity types and profiling, cleaning and uploading the data into Power BI to prepare the modeling of data.
Creating data models: The next step involves understanding how to create measures that provide a variety of analytical solutions using the DAX language. Care should be taken to focus on improving the hold over Power Query data retrieving task.
Visualizing data: Designing and formatting of reports must be learned properly with report navigation which allows analysts to tell visually immersive data-backed stories through Power BI.
Learning and using advanced data analytics: Elements like Q&A and exporting and sorting of data should be covered in-depth to assist in deeper analysis of reports. Interested candidates must learn how to create statistical summaries for their data and how to export data from Power BI. At this stage, reports are examined even more closely and advanced analytics is applied for more detailed insights.
Creating and managing datasets and workspaces: The next step is learning how to create and deploy workspaces so that users can access reports and data via the Power BI service. A data analyst must also learn how to connect Power BI reports to the cloud and on-premise sources of data.
How Power BI is to be used depends on the role of the user in a project or within a team. For instance, a Power BI developer would be tasked with pushing data into the datasets or be responsible for embedding dashboards and reports into custom applications. Power BI has a lot of potential and many are going for this certification to utilize their analytical skills for businesses and projects. We would love to hear your opinion on this matter, drop us a comment to let us know about it or if you have any queries.