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Split multiple columns into rows in #PowerQuery

written by Prathy Kamasani February 1, 2018
Split multiple columns into rows in #PowerQuery

Recently, I worked on an interesting problem. Datasource I was working with was a SharePoint list, working with SharePoint lists always turns out to be a difficult task than I first assumed. On top of that, with this particular data source; data was coming as semicolon delimited text. Basically, there were many columns like Mile Stones and Sub Milestones, their related data and so on.

Initially, when I looked at it, I thought, I could just split columns in a jiffy; apparently, I didn’t think through it. To cut a long story short, I had to find a way to split multiple columns into rows at the same time so that I can visualise it in a Gantt chart format.

Split multiple columns into rows in #PowerQuery:

Here is an example dataset. My data looked something like below; the real data set has far too many columns and much more data in each cell.

Name Milestones Sub Milestones
Prathy m1;M2;M3;M4;M5 s1;s2;s3;s4;s5

If I split Milestones and Sub Milestones one column after other by using Splitter.SplitTextByDelimiter function, this is how my data will look like. There is no way I can find the which sub-milestones belongs to what.( Well, there must be away, but def, not an easy way)

So, instead of splitting each column, I Split each row using function Text.Split and added it as a new column. Text.Split returns a list. Later, I used all these lists to create a column using Table.FromColumns() function which returned a table for me. When I expand the table, I have all my columns split nicely the way I want.

Power Query Script:

I did this with multiple steps for better readability, but you can fit all statements in a single statement as well. I kind of feel like, there must be an inbuilt function which does this, but I haven’t discovered it yet, if you knew, please do let me know 😊

You can download the sample file here – https://1drv.ms/u/s!Avm7gbgZtlMlvjUCCvb981Ga_AVB

Keep smiling 😊

Prathy

 

 

 

 

 

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