Get Started With Power BI
Updated: January 30, 2020
This page is a resource page that we will augment as needed. Listed are some of our favorite resources for those just getting started with Power BI.
Where Do I Start?
You have a choice. Either you can prepare yourself with the core concepts before starting with Power BI or you can jump in. We list three core areas of Visual Design, Discovery, and Data Design as requisite knowledge areas to do Power BI well.
We also list our favorite Power BI resources to help you when you are in the middle of a question.
First, understand the difference between BI and Reporting.
Concept: Visual Design
It is a good idea to learn how to design reports in a way that is visually engaging, communicates the right message, and is easy to use. We find ourselves always going back to these books to get ideas.
- Mobile Usability – Jakob Nielsen
- Now You See It – Stephen Few
- How Charts Lie: Getting Smarter about Visual Information – Alberto Cairo
- Storytelling with Data – Cole Knaplic
These books will help you discover the questions to answer and whether they are the right questions that should be answered.
- What Does Your Data Say?: With Conversation-Centric Design – Treb Gatte
- Optimizing Data-to-Learning-to-Action: The Modern Approach to Continuous Performance Improvement for Businesses – Steven Flinn
Concept: Data Design
We only found one book on the topic that covers this well, without it being so theoretical. Good data design shouldn’t feel like rocket science. This book will take you through the process in an approachable fashion.
- Analyzing Data with Power BI and Power Pivot for Excel – Alberto Ferrari
Getting Started with Power BI
Here’s your starting points with the tool itself.
- Getting Started with Power BI Video – Guy in a Cube
- Getting Started with Power BI Documentation – Microsoft
Power BI Premium
- Power BI Premium Article Series at FourMoo
Want to hear the latest on what’s going in the industry? Check out these podcasts!
Power BI Resource Books
These books will come in handy when you need to look up more advanced information.
- The Definitive Guide to DAX: Business intelligence for Microsoft Power BI, SQL Server Analysis Services, and Excel Second Edition (Business Skills) 2nd Edition – Marco Russo, Alberto Ferrari
- Power BI MVP Book: A book of tricks and techniques for working with Power BI – Power BI MVPs
Power BI Communities
These are the places you can go to ask questions. Find your tribe to learn from and to teach that which you’ve learned along the way.
Extremely Helpful Websites
The title says it all. These are simply a goldmine of information.
- Power Query magic from the BIccountant
- DAX Patterns
- BI Polar – Matthew Roche
- DataSavvy.me – Power BI Accessibility posts by Meagan Longoria, MVP
Power BI Related Tools
Sometimes, you need more than the out of the box tools. These can help.
Events to Check Out
Many people aren’t aware of the wealth of events out there where you can learn more about Power BI
- SharePoint/Office 365 Saturdays Worldwide (which have a lot of Power BI sessions) – Free
- SQL Saturdays Worldwide – Free
- SharePoint Fest (Has a Power BI track) – Paid
- Microsoft Business Application Summit – Paid
- Microsoft Ignite – Paid