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Power Pivot Principles: Recognising Measures

24 April 2018

Welcome back to our Power Pivot blog series. Today we discuss how to tell the difference between a measure and a field.

Below you will find a screenshot of the fields list from a PivotTable in Excel. Can you tell which items are measures and which items are fields?

Measures are displayed with the “fx” symbol, so in the list above the ‘Profit’ item is a measure and the rest of the items are simply fields.  If the list is unsorted, these measures will appear at the bottom of the list.

This screenshot above is from Excel 2016.  In earlier versions, the measure is often denoted with an ‘M’ instead, which is actually a little confusing for Excel 2013 users as Power Pivot uses the erroneous nomenclature of “calculated field” to describe a measure in this version of the software.  (A calculated field is a field in a table which contains a formula; a measure is a calculation which is applied to the filtered aggregation of one or more fields and / or calculations).


That’s it for this week, stay tuned to our blog page for more on Power Pivot.  In the meantime, please remember we have training in Power Pivot which you can find out more about here.  If you wish to catch up on past articles in the meantime, you can find all of our Past Power Pivot blogs here.