April 12, 2023

The Natural Language Tools in Power BI


Soheil Bakhshi, Principal Consultant in Data & Insights


Since the release of ChatGPT, attention has turned to ‘natural language queries’ to get the answers you need. But did you know Power BI has a couple of tools available to help you with your data?

Power BI ‘Q&A’ and ‘smart narratives’ operate with natural language. They help you easily find answers from your data and provide written reports about it.

Power BI Q&A: ask your data

Q&A (Question and Answer) in Power BI helps you understand your data by asking simple questions with natural language.

How does it work?

Users can ask questions about their data in a natural language format, similar to how they would Google/ChatGPT a question.

For example, you could ask:

"What were the total sales last quarter?" or "Show me the top 10 customers by revenue."

Power BI then turns the natural language question into a structured query that is analysed against the data and returns the answer visually as charts and tables.

The business benefit

It makes it easier and quicker to interact and gain insights into your data. As a result, you can make faster business decisions that are well-informed.

Smart narratives: translating reports into plain language

While you can “speak” to your Power BI, your Power BI can also “speak” to you.

How does it work?

Power BI ‘smart narratives’ translates data visualisations into natural language reports and explain what your graphs and charts mean in plain language. The report highlights important insights and patterns and then summarises the findings in a clear, easy-to-understand narrative.

The business benefit

It makes it easier to quickly understand the insights and trends in your data without having to analyse the visualisations and data themselves manually - saving you time.

What does this mean for you?

Power BI Q&A and smart narratives are both linked with Natural Language Processing. Together they add extra value to your data toolkit and help you make faster, more accurate decisions based on your data. Used in tandem, you can be more proactive in managing your products and services instead of reacting to events and conditions.

In summary you can:

• Better analyse your data and focus on outliers.

• Make faster decisions = be more agile.

• Make sense of complicated data & understand what is important.

For more information on how to get started with Power BI and broaden your data toolkit, talk to our team of experts.

We’re here to help.

Want to be better at Power BI?