Power BI Desktop Now Supports Importing Excel and SSAS KPIs

One of the key missing features in Power BI is support for target or key performance indicators.  Microsoft just announced and provided in preview support for consumption of existing KPIs from Excel.  You cannot create KPIs directly in Power BI Desktop just yet.

Here are the key steps to enable this new feature.

Step #1: Download the latest version of Power BI Desktop

You’ll need the latest version of Power BI Desktop to leverage the new feature.  You can download it here.

Step #2: Enable Preview Features in Power BI Desktop

Under Options –> Preview Features, the Use KPIs from Power Pivot or SSAS Tabular.


Step #3: Create an Excel Power Pivot Model with a KPI

Using Power Pivot, create a KPI.  In my sample, I create a KPI for average life expectancy for the US to compare with the actual ALE for each county. 


Step #4: Import Excel Workbook Contents

In order to pull in your KPI, you have to import Excel Workbook Contents.  Note: if you try to go through the usual “Get Data” option it doesn’t pull in KPIs, just tables and columns. 


Step #5: Display Your KPI

Once you have your KPI loaded, you can display it in a Table, Matrix, Card, or Multi-Row Card.