The concept of business intelligence has been around for more than a century and a half. At its core, Business intelligence is about understanding the data and relations between data in a way that guide the decision-making and action. From a technology standpoint, BI is a suite of tools for transforming raw and scattered data into meaningful business insights. Then, what needs have paved the way for the development of this concept?
Companies were investing great efforts in development of reports from disorganized data stack, and deriving value from these values, an effort that was seriously time-consuming. The need for visualization of the data accurately, viewing them in a single location, and creating insights from these data has paved the way for the development of Business Intelligence concept.
Power BI is a business analysis service to visualize and analyze all of your data in one single place. In other words, Power BI is a business analytics suit which analyzes and interprets data. In short, it visualizes your business. It generates fast answers through rich dashboards that are viewable in any device. Microsoft Power BI is a SaaS platform that enable everyone access their own data effortlessly, create live dashboards and reports, and explore data at any time via interactive visualizations. With MS Power BI, you can make all of your data viewable in a single location, regardless of where the data resides, enabling a consolidated view of business operations. Power BI consists of three complementary applications.
Create a data-driven company culture. Share interactive reports faster by using Power BI Pro for self-service analysis, and work on these reports with your team.
Use Power BI Mobile, a suite of local, interactive mobile applications for Windows, iOS and Android devices enabling secure access to Power BI dashboards and reports from any device.
Use one of the world’s largest and fastest growing business intelligence platform. Create and share regulatory-compliant interactive data visualization.
1. Preset dashboards and reports for popular SaaS solutions
2. Real-time dashboard updates
3. Secure and live connection to your internal and cloud-stored data sources
4. Intuitive data exploration through question&answer functionality
5. Integrated with other Microsoft products and cloud services including Azure Data Warehouse, Azure Streaming Analytics, Azure ML, Office 365
Power BI dashboard is a set of data visualization or charts, based on one or multiple reports, making presentation of insights easier – no need for specialization. An advantage of Power BI is that its Dashboard is live. For instance, when a visualization in the dashboard is connected to a real-time data source, visualization automatically updates itself, providing insights faster and creating reports instantly.
A dashboard may contain visualizations from multiple reports. Customizable dashboards – you can pin or add any charts from any reports to any dashboard. You can also add a picture (such as company logo) from an Excel file to the dashboard. It is even easier to create a dashboard when data imported from popular SaaS platforms such as Google Analytics, Marketo, Salesforce, ZenDesk. Once connected to a SaaS platform, Power BI displays the data in the preset dashboards, and the reports optimized for this solution, so you can get started to explore the values of your data in minutes.
In Power BI, dashboards are not only for illustration purposes, but are interactive tools. When you want to do an in-depth exploration on the data presented on a dashboard, you can review the underlying reports to see the details.
With a user-friendly interface, Power BI enables all employees create rich, interactive reports. In the Power BI, the report we mentioned is a set of charts that is also known as visualizations based on the same underlying dataset*. You can create a report from the scratch, select an existing report, or apply a preset report template created for a certain dataset. Well, how can we customize the reports? Reports can be customized by modifying the visualizations in an existing report, or adding new visuals. If the same data has different headings for review, it is possible to create reports in many variations from one dataset.
When a report contains the desired visualizations, you can pin the report or a sub-set of its contents in the dashboard for convenience of display. You can also share your reports with your teammates, and view them on the desktops and mobile devices.
*If you want to create reports using data from different sources, you can create a data model using Power BI Desktop or Power Pivot for Excel containing multiple sources, and then export Power BI Desktop or Excel file to Power BI.
Dashboards and reports are created using visualizations or charts. Power BI has various visualization tools enabling you present data in a visually appealing manner. Well, which charts can we create? Bar, line, column, area, tree map, doughnut, pie, distribution, radar, geographical charts and much more.
After creating a series of visualization, you can apply cross filtering across visualizations in a report to reveal further insights. You can use slicers to filter the visualizations in the same report page.
Microsoft Power BI supports live and secure dashboard access in any devices through local, interactive applications for Windows, iOS and Android. Dashboard is also optimized for smaller screens to improve the viewing experience.
Applications also have several functions specific to mobile device.
You can zoom in and out of the visualizations to look at the data closer.
You can set notification warnings to keep informed of the changes, and receive notifications when data goes up or down certain thresholds. Therefore, you keep automatically hands on the changing values of your data. You can see risks and opportunities instantaneously.
Take a snapshot of a report or visualization and write your annotations using the highlight functionalities. Share your snapshot with annotations via SMS or e-mail and collaborate with your teammates.
Question & Answer (Q&A) is a unique functionality of Power BI, and enable ask questions to your data in English. In response to these questions, it generates answers in the form of new visualizations or charts. You can ask anything to your data. Question & Answer Functionality smartly filters, ranks, aggregates, clusters and shows data according to keywords included in questions asked.
You can enable Question & Answer functionality by entering Q&A text box located at the top of a dashboard. Thus, Power BI creates a chart to answer the question by using the data in the underlying reports. If you like, you can pin the chart on the control panel and vary your chart by asking further questions. How a data model is set up has a significant effect on the functioning of Question & Answer functionality. Q&A functionality works best if data models are set up using natural keywords.
If you do not modify Power BI, all data and reports you created and loaded using default settings will only be shown specific to the user. However, you can share your dashboard charts with anyone in the company via e-mail addresses. Any change that you made on a dashboard after sharing it will automatically be synched among all users, not requires update manually. To take access to your data under control, you can determine, by giving authorizations, if another user can share your Dashboard with another user.
In terms of security, dashboards and basic reports are shared with users in the read-only view. A user who accessed a shared dashboard cannot create new reports or record changes in existing reports. Users of a shared dashboard cannot see or download the datasets used in the dashboard.
You can also collaborate and manage your contents with your team. Using Office 365 groups, you can make datasets for dashboards and reports available in the workspace of the group. In addition to Power BI, Group members can collaborate by using other Office 365 applications such as OneDrive Business.
Enable all teams in your company make data-driven decision by making use of new generation analyses.
With Power BI, a scalable analytics platform, minimize the extra cost, complexity and security risks caused by multiple solutions.
Access all of your data wherever you go thanks to local applications designed for Windows, iOS and Android.
View health of your business instantly using live dashboard of Power BI. Solve problem once they occur, notice opportunities once they arise.
Visualize your data. Leverage insights with built-in AI features. Derive Meaningful Results with Excel Integration.
Let Your Data be Safe, even if exported, thanks to lost data prevention feature of Microsoft Power BI.