Things you should know for a career in Power BI

The demand for skilled Power BI developers is high all over the world. So, if you are planning to take advantage of this opportunity, you need to first explore the job title and learn about the basic requirements and responsibilities of a Power BI professional. Read on to learn more.

What is Power BI?

In simple terms, Power BI is the Business Intelligence and Analytics Service offered by Microsoft. It offers a wide range of advanced analytics and interactive visualization capabilities empowering everyone to make smart, real-time decisions. Thanks to the interactive visualization and the ease of use it offers, Power BI is currently one of the most popular BI tools. It provides self-service analytics capability so that end-users can create dashboards and reports. It is a very effective tool that has customers ranging from startups to large-scale enterprises and even students. This is also the reason why the career opportunities associated with this tool are wide. The Power BI roles are very high in demand, including Power BI developers, Power BI analysts, and Power BI consultants. 

Who is a Power BI Developer?

A Power BI Developer is a professional who has an understanding of the ins and outs of the Power BI tool. They are the ones responsible for the administration and development of BI tools and have complete, in-depth knowledge of the BI system. Their main job involves converting the raw data into a meaningful insight using an easy-to-understand and interactive dashboard or reports. The role of a Power BI is crucial for an organization because of its executive, strategic, and managerial responsibilities.

Depending on the company, the responsibility of a Power BI developer can vary. Organizations hire a Power BI developer for designing and developing BI reports and for providing insights that improve decision making. There are a number of duties associated with this role that require extensive knowledge and expertise in databases, business intelligence, and technical aspects of the BI tools. They are hired because of the diversified requirements of different projects. If you want to work as a Power BI developer, you must have the knowledge of Power BI basics and skills to work on tasks like reporting, building data models, creating dashboards, building reports, completing the Power BI tool’s administration, and analyzing datasets. 

What skills do you need to become a Power BI Developer?

The first and foremost skill that a Power BI developer will need is proficiency in data science, data analytics, and business intelligence. They should also have prior knowledge of data warehousing, data integration, modeling, and presentation concepts. Here are some other required skills for a Power BI Developer:

  1. Experience with the BI tools

A Power BI developer needs to have experience with BI systems and BI tools like Power BI, SAP, Tableau, and others. Also, they must know how to create data-rich dashboards, write DAX expressions, and implement row-level security in the Power BI system. They must also know how to create custom BI products by using their knowledge of programming languages like Python and R and scripting languages. In their role as a Power BI developer, one of their main jobs will be converting data into stories that establish data-driven decision-making in the organization.

  1. Experience working in data-specific roles

In order to become a Power BI developer, one will need at least 2 to 3 years of experience working in a data-specific role or with BI tools. Since they will have experience with BI tools, they will be expected to be proficient in database management, data warehousing, data modeling, business intelligence, online analytical processing (OLAP), and SQL querying. 

  1. Knowledge of Microsoft BI stack

Microsoft offers a wide range of services and products used by several large-scale enterprises for data management, data warehousing, reporting, business intelligence, and analytics. Having experience and in-depth knowledge of Microsoft Business Intelligence stacks like SSRS, SSIS, SSAS, and Power Pivot will give them an added advantage.

  1. Proficiency in data analytics

One of the primary skills a Power BI developer needs is data analytics. They must have the perspective to see the bigger picture and communicate their insights to everyone in the company in layman’s terms. They must be able to analyze the data and visualize it through a dashboard, reports, and charts.

  1. Expertise in software development

A Power BI developer doesn’t need to be an expert in software development. However, to meet the diversified needs of the organization, they must know how to create a custom BI solution. For this, they must have an understanding of the software development architecture and technical aspects so that they can transform those requirements into a technical solution.

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Apart from the above-mentioned skills, a Power BI developer should also have the following non-technical skills:

  • Ability to interact with the technical teams and other stakeholders
  • In-depth knowledge of data modeling, data management, data visualization, and data design
  • Strong client management and communication skills
  • Ability to respond to the fast-changing business environment quickly
  • Updated with the best practices and advancements in the field of design and development
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Ability to multitask
  • Document models, processes, solutions, and designs and able to explain, discuss, and represent them to the team
  • Apply the lessons into solutions
  • An analytical mindset with a problem-solving approach
  • Eager to learn and self-motivated
  • Ability to work in an environment that focuses on continuous improvement
  • A team player who can initiate and lead

The reason why Power BI has been able to gain popularity over other BI tools is the options it offers in terms of connectivity including spreadsheets, and even Big Data. Also, using cloud applications like Salesforce, warehouses can be easily accessed. Power BI also allows connecting to the cloud database such as Amazon Redshirt. With Power BI, the organization can connect to any data. Also, it is equipped with a Web Data Connector that can directly pull the API from the web to connect to any data source. It authorizes business users to identify valuable data quickly and easily. With Power BI, there isn’t any need for the users to know query languages. 

There are some organizations that prioritize reporting skills while there are some others that emphasize Microsoft BI stack knowledge and analytics experience. Whatever their needs might be, with the above-mentioned skills, anyone can start their career as a Power BI developer.

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