How to Drill Through in Power BI

One of the great options available in Power BI is the capability to “drill through” to another report page. In this manner you can focus on a particular entity such as a customer, internal division, supplier or any other dimension of importance.

Different users have different data needs. When designing a dashboard typically the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are aggregated at a high level on the initial visualization. This offers executives and management types a “bird’s eye view” of performance.

Personally, I am a fan of BANs (look up the term in a dashboard design context if you are not familiar) when I want to highlight key takeaways.


Subsequent lower level dashboard pages can offer analysts and others the ability to either explore data with additional interactivity or simply display a static detailed report. The point is to start at a high level and allow your user to drill to a more granular level of data.

In this video I demonstrate the use of the drill through functionality in Power BI. In this scenario, you are the Chief Supply Chain officer trying to gauge your Perfect Order Percentage KPI for several internal divisions. When it’s time to sit down with your four division mangers to discuss their performance on this metric, you want the ability to start at a high level and then drill through to a static report based upon their respective internal divisions or on a specific shipping error.


Drill through on “In Full Delivery” error category

Do not try and cram every visualization, chart, table or gauge under the sun into a dashboard! Take advantage of drill through functionality and tailor your data presentation for specific user groups. This general concept applies to any data visualization tool, but if you’re using Power BI then this video will help you understand the specific steps required to enable drill through functionality.

I’m frequently questioned where I obtain mock data for my scenarios. My secret source is which is a great starting point for developing test data.

As always, do great things with your data.

Anthony B. Smoak, CBIP

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Check out other Power BI videos of interest definitely worth your time:

All views and opinions are solely my own and do NOT necessarily reflect those of my employer.


How to Create a Dashboard in Tableau

I took the time to produce a dashboard series that would get a relatively new Tableau user up to speed in very little time. I put together the “Goldilocks” videos I wish I had when I was a novice; not too short but long enough to hammer the concepts home.

In the first video, I dive head first into constructing four basic charts that I believe every data user should know how to put together. You will watch me demonstrate how to put together the following charts:

Line Chart with Forecast

Tableau Dashboard Line Chart

The shaded area is a time series forecast predicting the number of orders for the year 2020.


Tableau Dashboard Map

Heat Map

Tableau Dashboard Heat Map

Bar Chart

Tableau Dashboard Bar Chart

In the second video, I’ll cover the layout and formatting of the dashboard, as well as adding a little interactivity. When the user hovers the cursor over the Line Chart, all of the other charts will update to reflect the number of orders represented since the selected month and year.

Full Dashboard

Tableau Dashboard

Watch Part 1 to Build the Component Charts

Watch Part 2 for Layout and Interactivity

What You need:

  • Either Tableau or Tableau Desktop
  • Data set: Tableau Superstore Data (can be found all over the internet with a simple Google search).

Do some great things with your data!

If you find this type of instruction valuable make sure to subscribe to my Youtube channel. All views and opinions are mine alone, independently researched and do not necessarily represent those of my employer.