Power BI business intelligence software has become an essential tool in the data analysis community. As this becomes accessible to more and more small and medium-sized businesses, it is important to understand the differences between Microsoft’s Power BI and Excel tools in order to know in which cases the use of one or more another is recommended and thus bring your data analysis to a whole new level in line with your operations and strategies.
Power Bi And Excel: Two Complementary Software
Power BI and Excel are two data analysis tools developed by Microsoft. It is therefore not surprising that these two applications are designed to be complementary to each other. The joint use of both of these applications makes it possible to gather, explore, visualize and analyze data sets in a faster, but also more precise way.
It is therefore entirely possible to use workbooks created in Excel directly in Power BI. In fact, your Excel files become a source of data that you can easily combine within your dashboards created with Power BI. What’s more, you will also benefit from the advanced functionalities of Power BI, in particular at the predictive level, and you will have access to richer, more innovative and interactive visualization models in order to obtain more precise information.
The reverse is also true, Excel can build on the work done within Power BI to create charts and graphs. You will then be able to perform less complex analyzes quickly while having a single source of data in your file.
Furthermore, Power BI and Excel share some common features, such as Power Pivot and Power Query which are fully integrated with Power BI, but also available within the Windows version of Excel.
When Should You Use Power Bi?
If you need to perform advanced data analysis, Power BI will be your best ally. If you want to create dashboards that are both personalized and completely dynamic, Power BI is a must.
Indeed, by using this business intelligence tool, you will be able to connect many different data sources (like your ERP, an SQL server, etc.), which is not possible with Excel. As a result, you will be able to cross a lot of data in order to obtain valuable information that you will not collect otherwise.
What’s more, with Power BI, you can set up an automatic update of your data, which will allow you to have dashboards filled with up-to-date information, without the slightest effort.
In addition, Power BI will make it easier for you to collect data. Indeed, you will be able to automate many processes, which will allow you to save time that you can devote to the analysis of your data.
Another advantage of Power BI over Excel is that it was designed to facilitate information sharing within a company and team and cross-departmental collaboration. Power BI is accessible at all times and from many platforms, which makes it an essential tool for hybrid work.
Finally, for more advanced users, it will be possible to perform data modelling and predictions using scripts coded in R, a powerful programming language for data analysis, but easy to learn!
When Is It Best To Use Excel?
Excel remains an indispensable tool for data analysis. Indeed, when you need to create a pivot table quickly or visualize key performance indicators (KPIs) in a few clicks, Excel remains an ideal tool. In addition, the Microsoft 365 suite spreadsheet remains unbeatable for performing complex calculations quickly on a data set.
Team Of Experts
Al Rafay Consulting (ARC), has an experienced and expert team in using and taking benefits from the use of Power BI and Excel. Power BI and Excel have become powerful and essential tools to benefit from business intelligence within companies of all sizes. Al Rafay SharePoint Consulting is a team of highly skilled and professional experts in online solutions regarding all the Power Tools used in Microsft 365. If you would like to discuss the possibilities in this area with one of our experts, do not hesitate to contact us.