Sun. Apr 14th, 2024

What is a Power Query?

With Excel’s Power Query, a business intelligence tool, you can input data from several sources and then clean, modify, and restructure it as necessary.

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With only one setup and a quick refresh, you may utilize the same query more than once. It has some power as well. Millions of rows may be cleaned and imported using Power Query into the data model for further analysis. It is quite simple to learn how to use because of the user interface’s clarity and intuitiveness. Considering that it has a much shorter learning curve than other Excel features like VBA or formulae.

The nice thing about it is that none of it requires you to know how to code. Like the Macro recorder with VBA, the power query editor logs every change you do step by step and turns it into M code for you.

How Far Does Power Query Go?

Let’s say your system sends you a sales report each month in the form of a text file.

Each month, you must open the file, navigate to the uploaded folder, and copy the information into Excel.

The data is then divided into additional columns using the text to column tool.

The salesperson linked with each ID must be obtained by adding a new column to the data and using a VLOOKUP, as the system only reports the salesperson’s ID. Next, you must compute the commission that has to be paid out by summarizing the sales by salesperson.

Only the first four digits of the product code are related to the product category, but you still need to link the product ID to the product category. To obtain the product category, create a new column and use the LEFT function to extract the first four digits of the product code. You may now categorize the data to make a summary.

Even though it only takes an hour a month, the labor is somewhat monotonous, unpleasant, and it eats up time that might be spent properly examining the data and drawing insightful conclusions.

All of this can be automated with Power Query, right down to a monthly click on the refresh button. You may save an hour of effort per month by building the query only once and using it again!

Power Query is where?

Excel 2010 and 2013 users may download and install Power Query as an add-in. Once installed, Power Query will show up as a new tab named Power Query in the ribbon. It was rebranded as Get & Transform in 2016 and can now be found on the Data tab without requiring an add-in to be installed.

Utilizing Power Query to Import Your Data

Using Power Query to import data is easy. Numerous widely used data connections are available in Excel and may be accessed using the Data tab and the Get Data function.

Retrieve information from a single file, like an Excel workbook, an XML, a CSV, or a text file. Additionally, you may import many files from within a certain folder.

Obtain data from a variety of databases, including Sybase, Teradata, IBM DB2, Oracle, SQL Server, Microsoft Access, Analysis Services, SQL Server, and SAP HANA databases.

Obtain information from Microsoft Azure

Obtain information from internet resources such as Facebook, Salesforce, Dynamics 365, Microsoft Exchange, and Sharepoint.

Acquire data from external sources such as the web, Microsoft Query, Hadoop, OData feed, ODBC, OLEDB, and a table or range inside the current worksheet.

Similar to connecting two queries in SQL, we may combine two inquiries into one.

Similar to a union of two SQL queries, we may append one query to another.

What Is the Capability of Power Query?

Excel Power Query is capable of mashupting—filtering, combining, and combining data from one or more supported sources. M, sometimes referred to as the Power Query Formula Language, is used to represent this type of data mash-up. It is compatible with Excel and Power BI workbooks, as well as Analysis Services, an Analytical Data Engine used in corporate analytics and decision support systems.

End users may import and manipulate data from Excel and Microsoft products, Power BI, and Dataverse with the aid of Power Query, which offers a platform for data connection and preparation.

With the help of Power Query, a business intelligence tool, you may import data from several sources and modify, clean, and reorganize it as necessary. Thus, you don’t need to rewrite a query after it is configured and used with a refresh.

Using Excel’s Power Query

You may import data or connect to external data sources using Excel Power Query, and then modify the data to suit your requirements. Tables with headers may be created using this data, and columns can be eliminated. It is possible to alter the data type, combine tables, and produce reports and graphics. The four stages of utilizing Power Query are as follows:

Load/Connect: Establish links between data on local systems, another service platform, and the cloud.

Transform: Hold onto the original data as you change it to create the desired perspective.

Combine: Gather information from several sources.

Load: Finish the Excel query by loading the converted data into a worksheet.

Data from a single data source, such as an Excel workbook, many databases, the internet, Microsoft Azure, feeds, or cloud services, can be imported using Power Query. Once data from several sources has been combined, it can be reorganized to reveal insights hidden therein.

Refreshing the converted data will allow any updates to the original data to show up. The imported data displays any new columns, changes, and removals made to the external data source.

FAQs

1. What distinguishes Excel from Power Query?

Whereas Excel can only import data stored locally, Power Query can import data from several databases. Power Query offers a quicker processing speed and an interactive, mobile-friendly interface with customisable options.

2. Why would someone use Power Query?

Data may be extracted from several sources and transformed into a useful format using Power Query. Following the transformation, the data is stored for additional analysis and imported back into the database.