Everybody should be using Power BI – 10 Reasons Why

What is Power bi?

Perhaps you have heard it said that everybody should be using Power BI. But what is it, exactly? Power BI is a collection of software services, apps, and connectors. These work together to turn unrelated data sources into coherent, visually immersive, and interactive insights.

The application consists of several elements that all work together, starting with these three basics:

  • A Windows desktop application
  • An online SaaS (Software as a Service) service
  • Mobile apps for Windows, iOS, and Android devices

Built on Excel technology, the application will feel familiar to more advanced Excel users. You create visualisations in much the same way as you do with Pivot Tables. Power BI will make you much more productive  in your data analysis and reporting. This increased efficiency will lead to greater profitability.

everybody should be using power bi

Power BI is easy to use and it’s cheap to train users

It’s intuitive and easy to learn for most users. The training costs are low and learner adoption is rapid.

 it has free mobile apps

Microsoft have released mobile applications that are free for Windows, Apple, and Android.

You can subscribe via email

Most of us would like a static report to appear in our inbox every morning when we power up. All you need to do is to go to your report tab, click ‘subscribe via email’.  You will then receive a nicely formatted PDF document, ready for printing. However, these reports are so much better when you have full interactivity.

it can be embedded into your own custom apps

When working from the ground up, you’ll always have the option of designing your own architecture around it. So, if you want to build your own website and set user access via your own login credentials, this will be no problem for Microsoft.

it is extremely competitively priced

It’s free to try for as long as you want. However, if you want to take advantage of all the enterprise features such as automatic refreshes, controlled sharing of data, then all you have to pay is a mere $9.99 per month.

Power bi has a modelling engine that power users can learn

Microsoft is conveniently enabling a culture of self-service which is breeding a new generation of ‘developers’. Power BI uses a language called DAX (Data Analysis Expressions); this is a functional language that can easily be learned by Excel professionals.

The application has data loading tools that power users can learn

Power Query, which is also built into Excel, is so easy to use, it’s almost embarrassing to the skilled developers out there.

Power BI provides self-service Business Intelligence

The app is self-service Business Intelligence personified. Any competent Excel user can learn to use the tools, allowing them to become semi self-sufficient in their analytics and reporting.

it is an Enterprise-strength tool

Power BI has the foundation to be an enterprise-strength tool. No matter the size or complexity of your enterprise, the application is able to process your data.

consolidation dashboards

Among other things, Power BI is  a data source aggregator. It doesn’t matter where the data originates from, all you have to do is to click on a visualisation to view the information.

It is time for you to invest in Power BI, both the software and the training!

 

5 reasons to switch reporting from Excel to Power BI

For many years, Microsoft Excel has been the tried and tested reporting tool for many businesses. In 2019. more and more organisations are turning to Power BI as an alternative with its strong analytics and reporting functions.

Microsoft BI training courses

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With faster visualisations, statistical functions and calculations across broad datasets, it’s obvious that Power BI can deliver a far greater insight than excel. Let’s take a deeper look at just how Power BI and Excel compare:

 Access and store a large amount of data

Power BI has an impressive compression ability for Microsoft Excel and text/csv files which allow you to analyse and visualise huge quantities of data. Most devices would struggle to open a 300GB file which would make reporting in Excel a challenge.

Could you imagine having all your files saved, stored, thoroughly analysed and all taking up only 50MB? This is now a reality with Power BI by using the powerful compression algorithms to import the cache within the PBIX file.

Identify data trends quickly and easily

The analysis of trends with Power BI is easy. It comes equipped with built in time intelligence features, you can view vast amounts of data in seconds. You can also create a date dimension table in seconds and allows you to allow the time intelligence functions to work.

Intuitive UX Features

 A real gem about Power BI is that it is very straightforward to make something aesthetically pleasing with limited abilities around creativity. Old favourites like drag & drop, resizing and copy & paste will make any Microsoft Office user feel right at home.

Incredible Cloud Based Features

 When you have completed the initial building of your Power BI analysis tool, it’s time to share/publicise. With Excel, this would typically involve circulating a large file, placing a master copy on a shared drive or on SharePoint. But with Power BI, this has now been somewhat revolutionised. It is now publicised to the secure Microsoft Hosted Cloud Service called Power BI Service which automates the refreshing of our underlying data.

Row Level Security Features

 Adding RLS features was historically somewhat complicated in Excel but is now more straightforward and can be done by non-coders. An example of this would be employees only being able to see rows of data which is applicable to their geography. The addition of these filters is simple, and it eliminates the risk of other parties from viewing data that they should not be privy to.

Conclusion

Power BI is an easy tool to use that can rapidly propel an organisations culture into a data driven. These newfound abilities amongst data users mean less reliance on IT support for the sourcing, transformation and analysis of data. However Excel will still be the ubiquitous business tool (you can check out some Excel training courses for your development) just a lot of the heavy analysis can now shift to Power BI.

In this new data driven age, it is important for organisations to apply intelligence on how they best utilise their data to stay abreast of the revolution and respond appropriately to customer needs.