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What is Power BI? An Introduction

Microsoft 365, SharePoint, Teams

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BI is a bit of a buzzword these days, but why should you care? “BI” stands for “Business Intelligence;” the study of performing data analysis with business data. Using robust tools like Power BI, we can dive deeper into analyzing business data and visualizing the results.

Microsoft Power BI

Microsoft Power BI is an Office 365 tool that visualizes business data from a variety of sources. The tool displays unique and powerful insights to help your business make more informed decisions. Power BI is available by itself or as part of the Office 365 platform. No matter your role, Power BI is a very important and powerful tool to be familiar with. 

Data and Dashboards

Data is all around us, but how do we put that data to work? With Power BI! Power BI allows you to pull data from a vast array of sources then manipulate and combine that data to create some pretty awesome dashboards. Data by itself does nothing for your business unless you unpack it. Using Power BI, crunching data is no longer a mentally taxing task, but an engaging, insightful experience!

We need these stunning dashboards because they tell a story. Using the data crunched and displayed by Power BI, we are able to make more informed decisions. Consider this scenario: 

On our dashboard, we notice that sales in a particular category is lower than the average. As we dive into the data, via a more granular report from the dashboard, we can see immediately that the delivery time is lower due to a low number of available delivery methods or perhaps we see issues in the manufacturing level. See this in action!

3 Tips to Get Started With Power BI

  1. Find a dataset that interests you. This could be from the internet or internally in your business, and could be a website, a database, an Excel worksheet or any other source. The more you care about and understand the data, you will find the results more interesting.
  2. Define what you want out of the data from the start. What are you trying to get from the data? Answering this question first will help guide you as you move forward working with raw data.   
  3. Get started using Power BI Desktop: Download Power BI Desktop and watch this handy video to get up and going.

I hope this post has opened your eyes to all of the data around you and how crucial each data set is to making business decisions. Ready to discuss how Power BI can help your business, Contact us!

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