Difference between Excel Pivot and PowerPivot

Difference between Excel Pivot and PowerPivot

pivot table row labels in separate columns 2Below is a listing of the difference between Excel Pivot and PowerPivot. First it is important to understand what PowerPivot is. If you haven’t heard of PowerPivot have a look at the ‘What is PowerPivot’┬ápage. If you are not sure whether you have PowerPivot read how to check.

The difference between Excel Pivot and PowerPivot pivot tables can be summarised as follows:

Traditional Pivot Tables

  • Single data source typically in an Excel worksheet ideally a flat file with all the relationships built into the flat file.
  • As a result you need to do lots of work within the data source to join tables i.e. VLOOKUPS, SUMIFS etc.
  • More forgiving to errors
  • Dates are handled within the pivot table
  • Can use the functions available within Excel only

PowerPivot Pivot tables

  • Multiple sources of data (text, excel, database, DataStream) which can be refreshed directly
  • Relationships can be formed without VLOOKUP or making changes to the underlying data sources. You no longer need to create a massive flat file
  • Less forgiving. The process stops if it is not happy.
  • Special treatment of dates which allows vast improvements in the reports you can run.
  • Similar functions to Excel and the Excel syntax but lots of new functions especially with Time Intelligence.

Find out more about the PowerPivot course we offer