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Using Microsoft Power BI to Turn Your Data into Valuable Insights

For non-technical business users, being able to access tools for compiling, analysing, visualising, and sharing data all on one central platform can be an invaluable product. There are a few out there that claim to provide this service but one product that stands out amongst the rest is Microsoft Power BI.

Microsoft Power BI initially launched with the name Project Crescent in 2011. It was a public product bundled with the SQL Server Codename Denali. But it was only in 2013 that Microsoft unveiled it as Power BI and part of Office 365 which has now become Microsoft 365. It was pushed as an enterprise-grade business intelligence and self-service platform that was unified and scalable.

Since its launch, Power BI has become a Microsoft product that any of your top IT Support London based companies would recommend. For the most part, Power BI is being used by BI professionals and data analysts who are looking to create data models before they disseminate reports. But while there are professionals who rely on Power BI, they aren’t the only ones who can use it. Power BI is also great for those without any analytical background or training.

It's a popular platform as well for both department reps and management because of how easy it is to navigate and create reports and forecasts. It can be used to aid sales and marketing reps. It can also provide data for management to track progress toward goals for the department as a whole, as well as on an individual basis.

Overall, Power BI is great for finding insights using a company’s data. It can be used to help connect data sets, transform and clean data for a data model and create visuals like charts and graphs.

Power BI is made up of several components which include the Power Query, Power Pivot, Power View, Power Map, and Power Q&A. it is also capable of connecting dozens of data sources like files such as Excel sheets or PDFs, databases like SQL Server Databases, Oracle Databases and of course other Power BI data sets, Azure data connections and online services.

But Power BI’s real strengths for its powerful capabilities lie in its key features. Over the years, Microsoft has added a number of features but the ones of note according to TechQuarters, a trusted partner and provider of IT Support in London are the following:

  • Extract Insights from large datasets: Power BI can handle large volumes of data and compress them into efficient data models. Users can efficiently analyse datasets that contain over 100 million rows with the help of Power BI. The platform also offers features for working with very large datasets that are greater than several hundred million rows such as Power BI also offers features for working with truly large datasets that are greater than several hundred million rows, such as aggregations, incremental refresh, and composite models
  • Create custom visualizations with R and Python: Power BI supports R and Python scripts for data transformation, visualization, and advanced analytics. Users can easily create their own custom visuals using R or Python packages or simply use existing ones from the Power BI marketplace.
  • Analyse your datasets in Excel: Power BI was made to seamlessly integrate with Excel, allowing you to connect to your Power BI datasets and create PivotTables, charts, and slicers. You can even use familiar Excel formulas and functions to perform calculations on your data.
  • Create beautiful maps with your data: Power BI offers various map visuals to display your geographic data, such as ArcGIS maps, Bing maps, Filled maps, and Shape maps. You can also use custom map visuals from the Power BI marketplace, such as Icon Map, Route Map, and Globe Map.
  • Easily source and transform data with Power Query: Power Query is a feature in Power BI that lets you connect to various data sources, such as files, databases, web pages, and APIs. You can also apply various transformations to your data, such as filtering, merging, pivoting, and grouping.
  • Automatic data refreshes: Power BI allows you to schedule automatic refreshes for your datasets, so you will always have the latest data available. You can also set up alerts to notify you when the data changes or meets certain conditions.
  • Power BI Mobile App: Power BI offers a feature-rich set of apps for iOS, Android, and Windows 10 mobile devices. You can view mobile-optimized reports, share insights with colleagues, and set alerts within the mobile apps.
  • Re-use datasets across different reports and dashboards: Power BI enables you to create datasets that can be shared and used by multiple reports and dashboards. This way, you can ensure consistency and accuracy across your organization.
  • Powerful integration with other Microsoft Products: Power BI works well with other Microsoft products, such as Azure, Office 365, Dynamics 365, SharePoint, Teams, and more. The top Office 365 Consulting London providers often urge users to leverage the capabilities of these products to enhance their Power BI experience.
  • Monthly Product Updates: Power BI is constantly updated with new features and improvements based on user feedback and community suggestions.

Overall, Power BI is a powerful business intelligence and analytics tool that can help businesses of any size to turn their data into valuable insights. With Power BI, businesses can connect to various data sources, transform, and model their data, create stunning visualizations, and share their insights with others. The platform is a popular and well-recommended product for a reason. Ultimately, Power BI is a powerful and affordable tool that can help businesses gain a competitive edge in the data-driven world.

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