Power BI has been a hot topic lately, and for good reason. There is a lot of noise out there about how Power BI impacts reporting and analytics for Microsoft Dynamics, which has come with some ambiguity about what it is and what it isn’t. Some of the information is helpful, some of it is confusing, other parts are plain wrong.
In a recent webinar, we showed you how to begin using Power BI in 5 minutes with Jet Analytics. Today, we are going to explore the common misconceptions surrounding Power BI to help you navigate how and where it fits into your reporting and business intelligence strategy.
Here are the top 5 misconceptions about Power BI:
#1) Power BI works on its own, you don’t need anything else.
Power BI is a fantastic data visualization tool, but many business users get stuck from the start by having to build their own data models or waiting for an IT team (that doesn’t have the time) to do it for them. The key component behind using Power BI lies in where the data comes from. In order for business users to utilize the true potential of Power BI, you must have a data source to pull data from that provides everyone with the data they need in an easy to consume format. Having a highly structured data warehouse and cubes already built for Dynamics simplifies everything to maximize value quickly and allow users to create their own dashboards right from the get-go.
#2) A content pack from Microsoft is all you need to get up and running.
The content packs that come with Power BI are a way to get started, but what happens when you need more than the basics or need to include data from systems outside of what the content pack was built for?
#3) Power BI can do financial statements.
While Power BI is a fantastic tool for dashboards, paginated reports are another story. You still need financial statements and operational reports. Attractive visualizations help to quickly identify trends and spot anomalies, painting the bigger picture of your business operations – but this doesn’t replace your need for financials or operational details. Financial statements, receivable reports and anything showing more than basic detail requires a completely different set of skills.
#4) Having business users bring all of their various data sources into Power BI is fast and easy.
Clarification: adding a data source is simple; having your data sources link together is actually quite difficult. Things like item numbers, customer numbers, and GL accounts don’t always align perfectly across systems which can cause huge headaches for those not intimately familiar with data modeling.
#5) Creating custom calculations are quick and simple with Power BI.
In order to use any sort of date calculations, such as MTD or YTD, there needs to be a date calendar built into Power BI and this isn’t standard. Otherwise, a custom table or DAX is needed to build this, and that isn’t for the faint of heart.
Power BI has the capability of changing the way you see your business if set up properly and used in context of what it is built to do best – stunning, interactive visualizations and dashboards. Jet Analytics from Jet Global takes the guess work, expense and time out of getting your data into Power BI while providing a solution to fill the gaps of operational and financial reporting every organization still must have.