Power BI Dashboard vs Report

Article byJeevan A Y
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

Difference Between Power BI Dashboard and Report

A Power BI dashboard is made up to visualize data summarizing. In contrast, a report is a detailed presentation of data. Therefore, the Power BI dashboard is easier to understand as a report can contain complex information that some users might not understand.

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The key difference is that the Power BI dashboard is a collection of visuals to tell the story graphically, like charts and graphs, along with features to interact with the end-user. In contrast, a report is generally a detailed summary of the large data set as per the criteria given by the user.

In this article, we will discuss the differences between the two in detail.

Key Differences

The key differences between these two are as follows:

  • Information Level: Reports are created on multiple pages, so every kind of detailed analysis and information is available with “Reports.” We drill through the reports.
    Dashboards include only important information on the large data set, which is critical for quick decision-making.
  • Interactivity: Reports are embedded with slicers and filters, so if the summary table shows only monthly sales, then by adding the category field to the slicers, we can select each category individually and see how each category performs across months.
    Dashboards may not have this interactivity. We may see monthly and category-wise sales values in different tables or visuals. Users need to look at two different tables and find the differences.

Power BI Dashboard vs Report Comparative Table

Data SourceDashboards are built based on multiple data tables connected in one or more ways.Reports are generally created from a single data set table with no relationship to other tables.
No. of PagesDashboards are not allowed to cross more than one page. Hence, it is because it always shows the important reports on a single page.Reports are generally built-in multiple pages.
VisualizationsDashboards always concentrate on building insights into the data by using attractive visuals, graphs, charts, etc.Reports are not concentrated on the visualization part of the data. Rather, it looks to create summary pages.
TemplateDashboards do not have any set template. It is up to the creator to visualize the data to fit the needs of the business.Reports generally have a set template. According to the additional deletion of the data, the template will create reports if the formulas are applied from the data table.
Slicers and FiltersSince dashboards are limited to a single page, we cannot use filters and slicers.In reports, we can filter and slice the data using slicers and many filtering options like cross-filtering, visual level filtering, and page-level filtering.
Kind of InformationDashboards may include limited information, which is only important to the end-users.Reports are not limited to a single page so that it can have a detailed break up of each report category on multiple pages.
Reader InteractivityDashboards are pinned to the page so the reader can just read through the data.Reports are created with filters and slicers so the user can interact with the data set.
Changes to VisualsDashboards are pinned to the page. Even if the report owner changes, it will not reflect on the page.Reports usually come along with the data set, so if the reader wishes to change the visual type, they can change it at any time.
AlertsDashboards can create alerts to email when a specific condition or criteria is met, or a limit is crossed.Reports cannot create alerts to email when a specific condition or criteria is met or a limit is crossed.
Data Set ViewWe cannot see the source data with dashboards because the reader only gets the single-page information.Reports can see tables, data sets, and data fields in detail, i.e., raw data.


It boils down to what kind of information your reporting authority requires. You can go with the dashboard to see only a single-page summary. However, if the management wants to see every detailed information from the data, then you should go for reports.

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