Power Lab podcast

Do more with data: Power BI is the missing link

5 October 2022


Data is the new gold, at least if you manage to extract interesting insights from it. And Power BI from Microsoft is the best tool to support you in this task. We take a closer look at its strengths, both as a standalone tool and when combined with other Power Platform solutions. Together usually turns out to be better in this case too!

Learn more by listening to the entire first season of the Power Lab podcast!

Would you rather listen to an amusing conversation instead of reading this blog post? If so, we've got some great news for you. This blog post is a summary of the twelfth episode of our Power Lab podcast series, in which two of our most entertaining experts explore the platform's features each month and even come up with new insights. The first season is over, but don't worry, as of January Kristof and Lennert will be back with a second season!

Lennert's experiment: Hooked on pétanque

In the tenth episode, Lennert started working on an app to determine the winner of a pétanque game. Since then he’s become an avid pétanque player, so now he added some new components to the app. You can now create fixed players, give each game a name, and use Power BI tiles to analyze any games played. You can see where the game took place, how many wins players have to their name, and how far players throw their shots on average.

Power BI: A self-service business intelligence tool

Power BI is an easy, self-service tool to gain insights into datasets found in companies, regardless of where this data is located (such as Excel, SharePoint or Dataverse). This enables employees to provide a visual representation of data, which often makes a pile of data easier to interpret. Changes, trends and forecasts can be monitored easily, and can be viewed on both a desktop and web version. To share reports with others, they must be published to the web version. You can, of course, start building your report directly in the online version if you wish.

Together is better – The power of the Power Platform as a whole

Power BI's strength is often combined with other Power Platform applications. As they're all components of the same platform, they strengthen each other. As an example, you can use Power BI to indicate something in a Power App, as Lennert showed in his experiment. You can also use the combination to let employees view inventory using a mobile device throughout the store. With endless options available, the goal of providing insights faster is well within reach.

The other way around is also possible. A Power App is often shown in Power BI to close the feedback loop. You can use an integrated Power App to ask people for direct feedback in a Power BI report. This leads to more and better feedback because people can respond immediately. Using a feedback field can also provide better insights indirectly. People consulting the report who aren't completely sure about the underlying logic of a KPI can use the field to ask for an explanation, to help them interpret the report correctly.

Using Power BI and Power Automate together is also a popular option, with data-driven subscriptions being a well-known example of the two tools joining forces. Power BI can send a specific dataset export to a predetermined recipient at any time, and Power Automate is the perfect tool for customizing the export as you see fit. As an example, you can build a flow in Power Automate that monitors whether a KPI exceeds a certain value. If it does, the flow is enabled and a report is sent to the recipients. As you can see, Microsoft Power Platform is larger than the sum of its individual parts!

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