Importing and Cleaning Data
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Power BI has changed the BI landscape forever, enabling BI professionals and regular Excel users alike to work with big data and build insightful dashboards. 

Learn to use this powerful business intelligence solution from the ground up. Navigate the intuitive user interface and explore the ecosystem of data modeling tools. Discover outside-the-box visualizations and broadcast your insights to colleagues in the Power BI Service. This Course gives you a solid foundation to begin your Power BI journey. 

Learning Objectives

On completing this Course, learners will be able to:

  • Identify the primary components of the Power BI interface: reports, data, and model views
  • Import Excel data and build basic visuals
  • Publish a desktop report to the Power BI Service
  • Identify common challenges in Power BI data models, implement smart solutions, and avoid common mistakes

Intended Audience

  • Business professionals whose job requires them to design, build, or deliver business intelligence metrics
  • Anyone preparing to take the Microsoft PL-900 exam


A desire to learn to use Power BI


All Power BI designers need to be able to manage data and the various types of challenges that arise when preparing data for analysis. There are some great tools in Power BI to help you with these tasks. Whether your challenge may be importing data, cleaning data, mining data, transforming data, or combining multiple data sources, Power BI has a seemingly endless list of neat tools to help you manage your data. 

The first task, and a task that absolutely every Power BI designer needs is importing data. Data may come to us in various forms, from various sources, and Power BI is able to bring all of these data sources together, so you can manage them in one place. When we open a blank Power BI file, the first thing we are prompted to do is import some data. You can import this from all kinds of different places, from Excel, from other Power BI files, from SQL, or you can "Get Data" for even more options.

Let's start with importing data from Excel. In addition to clicking here, I can also use the home tab and select Excel from the data group to import some excel data. Select the file and click Open. Our file has multiple worksheets to choose from, or I can choose a specific table. It's important during this step to only select the data that you need. For us, this is the Customers Sheet here. Now we are given two options: we can Load or we can Transform.

The Load option would simply add this data as it is to our data model but the Transform button would allow us to clean and transform the data. After which we would load it into the data model. Using Power Query is an important skill, so let's dig in and click Transform Data. And now you'll see that it's making that connection, and memorizing the file's location, and the exact data that we want. It's memorizing this, so that we can refresh the data source later on and get all the new info without having to redo all of the steps involved. And when it's done establishing the query connection, we will land in Power Query. Welcome to Power Query. There's some stuff in here you are really gonna love.

About the Author

Chelsea Dohemann is a Senior Technical Trainer and Microsoft Certified Master with almost a decade of experience in technology training. She has taught an array of applications from Microsoft products including Office 365 web apps, Microsoft Office Suite, Power BI, VBA for Excel, and SharePoint to Adobe Acrobat Pro and Creative Cloud. Being a persistent learner herself, Chelsea is acutely in-tune with the challenges of learning. She presents her topics in plain language, with real-world examples, reducing complex concepts down to their simple parts.