Creating tables with multiple groups ("cross-tables")

The Zebra BI Tables visual lets you add hierarchies or groups to both axes of the visual. This provides even more insights as you can drill into more details and easily find the data which is most appropriate for you. 


  1. Build the main table
  2. Make the table more user-friendly
  3. Show Grand total
  4. Add subtotal
  5. Additional options

In this article, we will configure a visual so it looks like the one below where you have different Business Divisions, Units, or Products in the rows, including a hierarchy that allows you to drill down into the details. And to be able to also analyze this over time, we will add a time hierarchy with months and quarters to the columns.


First of all, we add a Zebra BI Tables visual to the report and add the Group Hierarchy from the BusinessUnits table to the Category placeholder. Also, we add the AC measure to the Values placeholder and PL to the Plan placeholder. In this article, you can learn how to create a hierarchy in Power BI. As you can see, now you already have a drill-down functionality in the rows which means you can collapse or expand the groups to see more or fewer details

Now let's add the quarter and month fields to the Group placeholder. Of course, you could also create a new hierarchy and just add the hierarchy but you can also just add the individual fields. It's important that the order of elements in the placeholder is correct. In this case, the quarter needs to be on top, followed by the month. Now you can also expand and collapse the Quarter/month hierarchy group in the columns. 


To use the expand/collapse functionality, just click on the little arrow in the column header. 


The main functionality has now been set up, but let's look at some more tips and tricks which you can use to better style the visual and make it more user-friendly. One thing you can do is to hide columns which are not important and change the chart type. Take a look at this article to see how to hide columns and this article to learn how to change the chart style of each column.

With some of the columns hidden, the report now looks like this


What's missing is the grand total, showing the result of the full year. To add the total for the year, click on the plus(+) symbol, which appears when you hover with your mouse in the top left corner of the visual and select Show grand total.  

The name of the newly added group is Total but this can be changed by selecting the arrow next to it and just replace the name Total which the desired description. Let's rename it to Year.

Now that we have a total for the year, you might also want to add subtotals for the quarters. You might think that these totals are actually already shown because, in the screenshot above, you can see them. But, you can only see them when the quarters are collapsed. Once they are expanded and you see the months, then there's no more total for the months as you can see in the screenshot below where there's no total for Q1

To add subtotals, just hover over the plus (+) symbol in the top left corner of the visual and select subtotals.

After that, you see the totals of quarters, even when they are expanded.


To hide a total or a subtotal column, just click on the arrow in the header and select the hide option

Of course, there are tons of other great ways of how multiple groups can be used. One other great example is the one below, which can also be found in the sample file. In this report, the Income Statements of several regions are compared. How to create a report showing a proper income statement is explained in this article

If you found this article useful and want to learn more about the Zebra BI Tables visual and how to deal with it if you also want to show forecast, this article is the one you should look at next. This article also explains some more design options you have and also how to add different views to just one visual using the chart slider. Once you start combining the skills from all these articles, you can create even more amazing reports. 

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