How do I import Power Pivot into Power BI?

Import Power Pivot into Power BI: When it comes to harnessing the power of your data, the integration of tools like Power Pivot and Power BI can be a game-changer. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of importing Power Pivot into Power BI. From understanding the prerequisites to optimizing your data visualization, we’ve got you covered.


Before diving into the integration process, ensure that you have the following prerequisites in place:

  1. Microsoft Excel: Power Pivot is an Excel feature, so make sure you have a version of Excel that supports Power Pivot.
  2. Power BI Desktop: Download and install the Power BI Desktop application on your machine.

Steps to Import Power Pivot into Power BI

Step 1: Open your Excel Workbook with Power Pivot

  1. Launch Excel and open the workbook that contains the Power Pivot model.
  2. Navigate to the “Power Pivot” tab on the Excel ribbon.
  3. Click on the “Manage” button to open the Power Pivot window.

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Step 2: Export the Power Pivot Model

  1. In the Power Pivot window, go to the “Home” tab.
  2. Click on “Export,” and select “Power BI.”
  3. Save the exported file with a meaningful name and location on your computer.

Step 3: Open Power BI Desktop

  1. Launch Power BI Desktop on your machine.
  2. Select “Get Data” on the Home tab.
  3. Choose “Power BI Desktop file” and locate the exported Power Pivot model file.
  4. Click “Open” to import the Power Pivot model into Power BI.

Step 4: Refine and Visualize Data in Power BI

  1. Power BI will display a navigator window showing the tables from your Power Pivot model. Select the desired tables and click “Load” to import them into Power BI.
  2. Once loaded, use the Power BI interface to create visualizations, build reports, and analyze your data.

Best Practices for Importing Power Pivot into Power BI:

  1. Prepare and Clean Power Pivot Model:
    • Before export, ensure your Power Pivot model is well-organized and cleaned of any unnecessary data or calculations.
  2. Check Compatibility:
    • Verify that the Excel version with Power Pivot is compatible with the Power BI version to avoid compatibility issues during the import.
  3. Optimize Power Pivot Model Size:
    • Trim down unnecessary columns and rows to optimize the size of your Power Pivot model for efficient importing and data processing in Power BI.
  4. Manage Relationships:
    • Understand and manage relationships within your Power Pivot model as they will be carried over to Power BI. Verify relationships for accuracy and relevance.
  5. Utilize Power Query for Further Refinement:
    • Leverage Power Query in Power BI for additional data cleansing and transformation after importing the Power Pivot model.
  6. Choose the Right Import Method:
    • Select the appropriate import method based on your data size and requirements. Options include Import, DirectQuery, or Dual mode.
  7. Leverage Power BI’s Native Features:
    • Explore and utilize Power BI’s native features for data visualization and analysis after importing to maximize the benefits of both tools.
  8. Optimize Report Performance:
    • Consider performance optimization techniques, such as aggregations and summarized tables, to enhance the responsiveness of your reports and dashboards.
  9. Regularly Update Data:
    • If your data changes frequently, set up scheduled refreshes in Power BI Service to keep your reports up-to-date.
  10. Document Your Workflow:
    • Maintain documentation of the entire process, including any modifications or customizations made during the import, for future reference and troubleshooting.
  11. Test Import Scenarios:
    • Conduct thorough testing with different scenarios to ensure the imported Power Pivot model behaves as expected within the Power BI environment.
  12. Stay Informed about Updates:
    • Keep yourself informed about updates and new features in both Power Pivot and Power BI to take advantage of the latest enhancements and optimizations.

How to Use Power Pivot in Excel

External Resource

  1. Microsoft Power BI Documentation

FAQs about Importing Power Pivot into Power BI

Q1: Can I import Power Pivot data into Power BI without using Excel?

A1: No, Power Pivot is an Excel feature, and you need to export the Power Pivot model from Excel to import it into Power BI.

Q2: Are there any limitations when importing Power Pivot into Power BI?

A2: While most features are supported, some complex Power Pivot models may require adjustments during the import process.

Q3: Can I schedule automatic refreshes for Power Pivot data in Power BI?

A3: Yes, you can set up scheduled refreshes in Power BI Service to keep your data up-to-date.

Q4: Is there a limit to the size of the Power Pivot model I can import into Power BI?

A4: Power BI has certain limitations on data size, but these are generally sufficient for most business scenarios. Check the official documentation for specific details.


Integrating Power Pivot into Power BI opens up a world of possibilities for effective data analysis and visualization. By following these step-by-step instructions, you can seamlessly import your Power Pivot model and leverage the advanced features of Power BI. Experiment with different visualizations, explore insights, and take your data-driven decision-making to new heights. With the integration of these powerful tools, you’re on the path to mastering data analytics in your organization.