Skip main navigation

New offer! Get 30% off one whole year of Unlimited learning. Subscribe for just £249.99 £174.99. New subscribers only. T&Cs apply

Find out more

Pivot Charts and Cube Functions


The previous activities in this week focused exclusively on manipulating the data in your Excel data model. Now that you have everything the way you want it, it’s time to create data visualisations.

In this video, Dany introduces you to pivot charts. These charts are quick and effective tools to visualise your data and give you the option to display the variables you want at any time.

Dany also discusses the importance of hierarchies (whether they are natural or not) to drill into the data in a more detailed and specific way.

Another way to visualise functions is through cube functions. Cube functions can be quite complicated, especially if you haven’t had any experience with them before, so only use them when necessary.

When to use cube functions:

  • When dashboard-style layouts are required (flexibility to move around cells).
  • To reproduce reports that must look and behave similarly to legacy reports.
  • To overcome the limitations of pivot tables and pivot charts.
  • To integrate data from multiple data models into a single report.

When not to use cube functions:

  • When pivot tables and pivot charts could deliver the same result.

When you’re ready, test your knowledge in the quiz and labs that follow.

Lecture Files

The file used in the lecture is provided here: “Multitable model.xlsx“. If you are using Excel 2010, use this file instead: “Multitable model-2010.xlsx“.

The data has been loaded to the Excel data model. You don’t need to refresh or edit the Query.

Further Reading

To learn more about hierarchies in Excel data model, check out the following resource:

This article is from the free online

Microsoft Excel: Advanced Data Analysis and Visualisation

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now