The Measure of Success – A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI


Power BI is a powerful business intelligence tool that allows organizations to gain valuable insights from their data. To make the most of Power BI’s capabilities, it is crucial to understand the concept of measures and how they contribute to measuring success. In this article, we will explore the different aspects of measures, including implicit measures, and delve into their significance in the Power BI ecosystem.

Understanding Measures in Power BI

What Are Measures?

Measures are calculations performed on data within Power BI to derive meaningful information. They are typically used to perform aggregations, calculations, and comparisons. Measures provide a way to analyze data and answer specific questions, such as total sales, average revenue per customer, or year-over-year growth.

Types of Measures

In Power BI, there are two primary types of measures: explicit measures and implicit measures. Explicit measures are created explicitly by the user, while implicit measures are automatically created by Power BI based on the relationships between data tables.

Working with Implicit Measures

Definition of Implicit Measures

The Measure of Success - A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI

Implicit measures are created by Power BI when a user drags and drops a field onto a visual without explicitly defining a measure. Power BI automatically aggregates the data based on the visual’s context, creating implicit measures on the fly. This feature simplifies the process of analyzing data and allows for quick insights without the need for explicit measure creation.

Examples of Implicit Measures

An example of an implicit measure is when a user drags the “Sales” field onto a bar chart. Power BI automatically calculates the sum of sales for each category or dimension represented in the chart. Implicit measures provide a seamless way to analyze data without the need for manual measure creation.

Importance of Measures in Power BI

Measures play a crucial role in Power BI as they enable users to evaluate and monitor key performance indicators (KPIs) and track progress towards their goals. Measures provide valuable insights into business performance, identify trends, and uncover patterns in data. They empower organizations to make data-driven decisions and drive overall success.

Creating Effective Measures

To create effective measures in Power BI, it is essential to follow best practices and utilize the power of Data Analysis Expressions (DAX) formulas. By adhering to these guidelines, users can ensure accurate calculations and meaningful results.

Best Practices for Measure Creation

When creating measures, it is crucial to keep the following best practices in mind:

Define clear objectives: Clearly define the purpose and goal of the measure to ensure it aligns with the desired analysis.

The Measure of Success - A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI

Choose appropriate aggregations: Select the right aggregation functions such as sum, average, count, or maximum/minimum based on the nature of the data.

Consider context: Understand the context in which the measure will be used and define it accordingly to ensure accurate results.

Avoid circular dependencies: Prevent circular dependencies by avoiding measures that refer to other measures that, in turn, rely on the original measure.

Using DAX Formulas for Measures

DAX is a powerful formula language used in Power BI for creating measures. It offers a wide range of functions and operators to perform complex calculations. By leveraging DAX formulas, users can enhance the functionality and accuracy of their measures.

Utilizing Measures for Analysis

The Measure of Success - A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI

Once measures are created, they can be utilized to perform in-depth analysis and gain valuable insights from data in Power BI.

Analyzing Data with Measures

Measures enable users to perform various analytical tasks, including:

Comparative analysis: Compare data across different time periods, regions, or other dimensions using measures to identify trends or anomalies.

Ratio and percentage calculations: Calculate ratios, percentages, or proportions to gain a deeper understanding of data relationships.

Benchmarking: Measure performance against predefined benchmarks or industry standards to assess the effectiveness of business strategies.

Visualizing Measures in Power BI

The Measure of Success - A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI

Power BI provides a range of visualizations to present measures in a visually compelling manner. Users can leverage charts, graphs, tables, and other visual elements to communicate insights effectively.

Understanding the Measure of Success

Defining Success in Power BI

In the context of Power BI, success is determined by the achievement of predefined goals and objectives. It involves effectively utilizing measures and KPIs to drive business performance and make informed decisions.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

KPIs are specific metrics used to evaluate progress towards achieving business goals. They provide a clear indication of whether the organization is on track or needs to take corrective actions.

Evaluating and Monitoring Success

Tracking KPIs and Measure Performance

To ensure ongoing success, it is vital to monitor and track the performance of measures and KPIs regularly. This involves:

Setting up dashboards: Create customized dashboards that display relevant measures and KPIs in real-time for quick monitoring.

Regular review: Periodically review measure performance and KPIs to identify areas of improvement or potential issues.

Iterative Improvement of Measures

The Measure of Success - A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI

Success in Power BI is an iterative process. By continuously evaluating measure performance, organizations can identify areas for improvement, refine calculations, and enhance the accuracy and effectiveness of their measures.


Measures are the cornerstone of success in Power BI. They provide the means to analyze, evaluate, and monitor data, enabling organizations to make informed decisions. By understanding the different types of measures, creating effective measures, and utilizing them for analysis, businesses can unlock the full potential of Power BI and achieve their goals.


What is the role of measures in Power BI?

Measures in Power BI enable users to perform calculations, aggregations, and comparisons on data to gain insights and make data-driven decisions.

The Measure of Success - A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI

How do I create a measure in Power BI?

Measures can be created in Power BI using the Power BI Desktop by defining calculations using DAX formulas in the formula bar or by using the “New Measure” feature.

Can I customize the format of measures?

Yes, you can customize the format of measures in Power BI. The formatting options allow you to modify the number display, currency symbols, decimal places, and more.

The Measure of Success - A Deep Dive into Measures and Implicit Measures in Power BI

What are some common KPIs in Power BI?

Common KPIs in Power BI vary depending on the industry and business objectives. However, some common examples include sales growth, customer acquisition rate, customer satisfaction score, and employee productivity.

How often should I evaluate measure performance?

The frequency of evaluating measure performance depends on the specific needs and dynamics of your business. However, it is recommended to review measure performance regularly, such as monthly or quarterly, to track progress and identify areas for improvement.

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