10 tips for getting help with your Power BI questions
Do you ever get frustrated using Power BI, or struggle because you can't get answers to your Power BI questions when you need them -- i.e. "just-in-time"?
Here are 10 tips that Power BI experts (including people who work on the product at Microsoft) commonly follow to find answers to their Power BI questions.
1 Use a search engine
Experts who need answers for Power BI often use search. Want to find a DAX formula for a common business calculation? You can find this on the internet. Bookmark where you find the best answers. Create a folder for yourself on tips and answers you find.
2 Check the Power BI documentation
The Power BI team is continually updating and improving the Power BI documentation and training. You can find great content including recordings of webinars, white papers, guided learning, and links to blog posts on all the latest features.
3 Read the Power BI blog for the latest news
The Power BI team explains all the new features in their regular Power BI blog posts. Find out what's new in everything from Power BI Desktop to the Power BI mobile apps. Make a habit of returning often to see what's new: Take a few minutes each week to scan the blogs. You never know when you'll benefit from that bit of information you noticed months ago.
4 Try Twitter
Lots of Power BI customers and experts are on Twitter. Ask your question in a tweet. Add the hashtags #powerbi and #powerbihelp so the people who know will see your tweet.
5 Watch videos on YouTube
Do videos fit your learning style better? Power BI has two sets you'll be interested in:
- A good place to start is the Analyze and Visualize data with Power BI playlist.
- Then try the Power BI channel for a much bigger selection.
- If you have more experience with Power BI, the Guy in a Cube YouTube channel might be a better fit for you.
6 Attend training
The training options available to you are nearly endless, from in-person lab training to short videos.
- Guided learning on the Power BI site.
- Free Power BI webinars, live and on-demand, on the Power BI site.
You can find additional options online, such as:
- edX.org offers a free course, Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Power BI.
- Lynda.com offers has courses such as Power BI Pro Essential Training.
- Look for in-person "Dashboard in a Day" training sessions.
7 Ask or search in the Power BI community
Ask questions and find answers in the Power BI community. BI experts around the world are active in the community. Make sure to benefit from their knowledge by using this resource.
8 Join or create a Power BI user group
Join a Power BI user group and ask your group for help in answering your questions. Or you start your own user group and create a community of people who help each other out, focused on your needs: in your area, for your data, in your time zone.
9 Check the service status
If you're having an issue with the service, it may be that the service itself is having issues. Check the Support page for any reports.
10 Just try it
If all else fails, the final tip is to observe the system. Often, people ask what capabilities Power BI has. You can often answer this type of question by going into the Power BI service or Power BI Desktop, looking at the options in the user interface, and then trying to use them.
For example, say you're wondering if you can share dashboards with a security group. To answer that question, go to the sharing dialog box and try adding a security group. Either way, you'll have your answer after this test.