Power BI KPI

What is Power BI KPI?

Power BI KPI (Key Performance Indicator) is a feature that allows users to visually represent and monitor essential metrics or performance indicators in their data. Power BI KPIs provide a way to measure progress towards specific goals or the distance to targets within a business or organization. With the Power BI KPI Indicator, users can track, analyze, and visualize their data to gain insights and make informed decisions. Power BI provides the option of creating KPI using the Power BI KPI visuals in the Build visual section in the Visualization pane, as shown below:

Power BI KPI

In the subsequent section, we will see how you can build KPI visual in Power BI.

Key Takeaways
  • The Power BI KPIs are visual representations of important metrics or performance indicators.
  • The Power BI KPIs help track progress toward goals and targets in an organization.
  • Building a Power BI KPI visual involves creating a measure, adding a KPI visual, and configuring it with the relevant data and settings.
  • Accuracy, clarity, regular updates, and relevance are important factors to consider when working with Power BI KPIs.
  • The Power BI KPIs don’t have any sort option and before you convert your visuals to KPI, it is recommended to sort your visuals

How to Build KPI Visual in Power BI?

To build a Power BI KPI visual, you can follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Connect to the data source that contains the applicable data for your KPI visualization.
  • Step 2: Create a measure by entering the appropriate DAX formula to calculate the value of the KPI based on your business logic or calculation requirements.
  • Step 3: Add a KPI visual using the drag-and-drop option onto your report or dashboard canvas.
  • Step 4: Configure the KPI visual by assigning the measure you created for the KPI visual, specify the target value, and customize the visual settings such as colors, thresholds, and trend indicators.
  • Step 5: Format the visual such as adjusting the formatting options of the KPI visual to align with your desired presentation style and aesthetics.

Note: The objective of a Power BI KPI Indicator is to evaluate the current value as well as the status of a goal or metric against the defined target. It means you must provide a base value or measure, a target value or measure, and a threshold limit or goal to measure, without which the KPI visuals will not be useful.

Other than Power BI KPI Indicator, Power BI KPI Scorecard can be an efficient tool for businesses to track multiple goal metrics in a single report and assess the performance review across various segments using these KPIs. Power BI KPI Scorecards combine multiple Power BI KPI Indicators into a single report summarizing progress across different goals or measures. It helps organizations to identify the risks or delays in target achievement. Power BI Scorecards can be easily shared, increasing team productivity and collaboration.

You can create Power BI KPI Scorecards using the Power BI service Metrics hub.

Power BI KPI Visual

A typical Power BI KPI Scorecard looks as follows:

Power BI KPI - Scorecard

The Power BI KPI table is another way of organizing and providing a structured view of various Power BI KPI Indicators. It allows users to compare the goal progress against targets and Power BI KPI Indicators next to it.

A Power BI KPI Table looks like the one highlighted below.

Power BI KPI - Table

You can also create a Power BI KPI Card with an arrow visual to represent any trend or the direction of the KPI’s performance. The arrow can be upward, downward, or neutral per the specified conditions. It ensures that users can quickly assess the performance of a Power BI KPI Indicator to evaluate whether the progress is positive, negative, or not progressing at all.


We will go through some examples to create the Power BI KPI Indicator for data analysis and visualization.

Example #1 – Simple KPI

In this example, we will create a simple Power BI KPI Indicator to measure the Total Sales against the Target using the Financials dataset. We need current value, a target goal, and a measure to create a Power BI KPI. Let’s see how to create such KPI using the steps highlighted below:

Step 1: Load the Financials dataset to Power BI using a Data connection.

Step 2: Select the Financials table and create a measure TargetSales by entering a DAX expression in the formula bar.

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 2

Step 3: Select the KPI option from the Build visual section in the Visualization pane.

Power BI KPI

It will create a KPI visual in the report canvas.

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 2 - KPI Visuals

Step 4: Select the KPI visual in the report canvas to make it active.

You will notice the KPI-specific headers in the Visualization pane, as shown below

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 4

Value refers to the performance measure to plot, the Trend axis is the period, and Target is the field containing the target number.

Step 5: Specify the fields for the KPI headers in the Visualization pane

Here we have selected the Total Sales as Value, Month as the Trend axis and TargetSales measure as the Target.

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 5

Step 6: Format the KPI by navigating to the Format your visual section in the Visualization pane

Here we have formatted the Label, Font color, and Style as shown below.

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 6

This will format the KPI visual as highlighted below.

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 6 - Format

Step 7: Add a slicer to the Power BI KPI by selecting the Slicer option in the Build visual section in the Visualization pane.

This will create a simple Power BI KPI visual showing the total sales against the Target as per year selection.

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 7

You can additionally format the slider visual by navigating to the Slicer setting and adjusting the style to a Vertical list.

Power BI KPI - Example 1 - Step 7 - Vertical List

Example #2 – Dual KPI

In this example, we will create a Dual Power BI KPI Indicator using the Financials dataset. By default Dual KPI visual is not available in Power BI and hence it requires to be imported before we could create such a visual. There is a pre-requisite of having valid Power BI credentials to log in to Power BI service to import Dual KPI from Appstore. The steps required for creating this visual are highlighted as follows:

Step 1: Import the Power BI simple KPI report created as part of example 1 using the Open report option.

Power BI KPI - Example 2 - Step 1

Step 2: Navigate to the Visualization pane, select Get more visuals (…) at the bottom of Visualization in the Build visual section, and choose the Get more visuals option from the list.

Power BI KPI - Example 2 - Step 2

Step 3: Enter the appropriate credentials in the sign-in window to sign in to the Power BI service.

Power BI KPI - Example 2 - Step 3

Step 4: Post successfully login, a Power BI visuals window will open. In the search box, search for the Dual KPI keyword.

Example 2 - Step 4

Step 5: Now select the Dual KPI from the Appstore and click on Add button.

Example 2 - Step 5

This will successfully import the Dual KPI visual to Power BI Desktop.

Example 2 - Step 5 - Dual KPI

The Dual KPI visual will be visible in the Visualization pane as shown below.

Example 2 - Step 5 - Visualization

Step 6: Now select the existing visual on the report canvas and then select the dual KPI on the Build visual section in the Visualization pane.

This will change the chart type from simple KPI to dual KPI as shown below.

Example 2 - Step 6

With the Dual KPI chart, you will be able to view the current value of sales and target value for any month by hovering the mouse over the chart.

Example 2 - Step 6 - Dual Chart

Important Things to Note

  • Ensure that the data used for calculating Power BI KPI is accurate, reliable, and consistent across the entire analysis.
  • Define the Power BI KPIs and their targets clearly to ensure everyone understands what is being measured and what constitutes success or failure.
  • Keep the KPIs up to date by refreshing the data regularly so that the visualizations and insights reflect the latest information.
  • Consider the context and relevance of the KPIs to the specific business or project goals. Not all metrics will be relevant or meaningful in every scenario.
  • Dual KPI visual is not available by default in Power BI Desktop and requires a valid Power BI credential to add from Appsource.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What are the different types of KPIs in Power BI?

The different types of KPIs in Power BI include:
Absolute Value KPI: It compares the actual value against a fixed target or threshold and is used to determine whether a specific value is meeting the desired objective.
Relative Value KPI: It compares the actual value against a reference value, such as the previous period’s value or an average, and is used to perform trend analysis of the performance.
Status Indicator KPI: It represents the performance using visual indicators like traffic lights (red, yellow, green) or icons (up arrow, down arrow) and helps provide a quick overview of the performance status.

2. How do you track KPI in Power BI?

Connect to the data source.
Create a measure using a DAX formula to calculate the KPI value.
Create a Power BI KPI visual by defining the KPI measure, target value, and trend indicators to visualize the KPI.
Customize the appearance and behavior of the KPI visual by configuring settings like target thresholds, data colors, and trend icons.

3. Why is Power BI KPI not working?

If your Power BI KPI is not working, there could be several reasons:
Incorrect measure or formula
Data modeling issues
Incorrect visual configuration:

4. How do you create a KPI indicator in power bi?

To create a Power BI KPI indicator, follow these steps:
Create a measure using a DAX formula to calculate the KPI value
Insert a card visual into your report or dashboard.
Assign the measure you created to the card visual and format it as needed.
Use conditional formatting in the card visual to change the font color, background color, or data bars based on different threshold values or conditions.

By customizing the formatting options, you can visually represent the KPI indicator in a way that is meaningful and easy to understand for your users.

Recommended Articles

This has been a guide to Power BI KPI. Here we learn to build KPI visuals and we will use them to create an indicator for data analysis, with examples. You can learn more from the following articles –

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