Power BI Calculation Groups: YES, but why?

Calculation groups can significantly reduce the number of measures, by grouping common measure expressions as calculation items. The most common scenario is time intelligence. The year-to-date (YTD), previous year, and other measures are often required variations of multiple base measureslikeNetSales and GrossSales for example.

The more base measures and time intelligence variations that are required, the bigger the issue becomes.

Calculation groups create the possibility to define once the calculation logics are needed(calculation items such as Base, YTD, and PY), and then apply them to multiple measures(by using the DAX function SELECTEDMEASURE () in the calculation item).

Calculation groups can be used much like dimension attributes such as customer name or product category in combination with a base measure (NetSales or GrossSales). The selected calculation item will then be applied to the selected measure!

Calculation groups offer the following benefits:

  • Model becomes easier to understand and use
  • Less initial setup
  • Less maintenance
  • Lower risk of inconsistencies and errors

Calculation groups are created by using the Power Bi Desktop external tool Tabular Editor.

Interesting reads about this topic

More information can be found on the Microsoft website using this link.

A more in-depth article can be found on the website of sqlbi.