Introduction to Power BI (Video)


Ziad: Hello, everyone. I hope you are doing well. My name is Ziad Paracha. Today we’ll be discussing Power BI in Office 365. Just a quick run through what we’re going to do, we’re really discussing the basic fundamental things today. But what Power BI could potentially do to you and near the end of our presentation tonight, what we will do is show a very quick demo as far as how you can build dashboards and in a couple of minutes, and really how, you know, adaptive and friendly it is to use that environment. Just to go through some of the clicks, agenda items, we will talk about how you can transform your business with the business intelligence and how modern BI platform is used to this day. And we will kind of move towards really quickly through over, you know, the analysis, SQL analysis and things like that. Probably, we won’t get too depth, but you can definitely reach out to me in case you want to chat more about those things.

So just looking at a little bit of history here and, you know, where we are positioned to this day. If you look at the top 500 companies over the last couple of little while, you know, you realize that, you know, companies that used to be on the index for 150 years are now only being there. You know, 35% of those companies aren’t there anymore. And the lifespan that they spent in that actually was about 15 years and that’s declining since. I think now it’s about 7 to 10 years, where a company will actually stay on the S&P 500 list index. And that really is because of that digital transformation, the ability for a company to take data and be able to understand its market and react to it, right? And that’s the changing environment that we’re in right now.

So let’s see what impact that really has on a company. So you may not have heard of the term called data cultures. This is something that’s kind of been quite more familiar now than it was ever before. Data culture is the ability for you to take that data and instill a culture where everyone kind of has access to that information. Whereas data used to only be in certain departments hosted by certain people. Now, that data is spread throughout the entire organization, and everyone has access to it on their fingertips, then that environment, that culture, basically instills the greatness and brings in that change that we’re looking at.

And just to talk a little bit more about data here, two times as much growth in analyzable data by 2020. That’s next year. So there’s more, and this is probably stats from years some ago. You’re looking at twice as much data coming out in the next, like, within five years. That’s crazy. If you also look at how people are actually moving towards the cloud and using that, it’s critical to understand because a lot of that organizations have committed, 80 plus organizations are committed to at least having an hybrid cloud solution. So something where they can have some sort of data present in the cloud as well.

So whether it’s consumption to date, and this was, again, around 2018, and 2017, 50%, of the organization use the SaaS model, right. So whereas back in the day, it didn’t used to be that much, and I’m talking less than 10 years ago. What’s the opportunities that you get with data and how you can transform your organization for that? I mean, 8% are generated mostly by digital transformed enterprises. That’s how much income. An 8.8% increase income occur when you transform with that data. You’re able to get a lot more benefits. There’s a lot more productivity, there’s more efficiency, there’s a lot more savings. Actually 14% savings when you go through depending on costs of…software costs and the amount of staff that you need and all the other things that are involved here.

Let’s rush through real quick. There are a couple companies here that have kind of utilized BI and how that’s kind of helped them. So you could utilize business intelligence to transform your products. You can utilize it to optimize your operations. And these are real examples of how people will optimize and empowered their employees, and lastly, engage your customers. So there’s different ways of utilizing business intelligence and the power of digital transformation to get to where you essentially want to be ideally.

So this may be a little bit more complex, but I’m going to try to simplify as much as I can. This is basically the modern BI platform, right? So there’s data, you model it. There’s an analyzer, an author who creates these dashboards, and then you obviously deliver that. And you deliver that to not just a corporation, but essentially anyone, right? So we’re not going to dive very deep. This gets a little too complex. We’ll skip over this part here. But what’s really important to understand is out-of-the-box, SaaS content model that comes with Power BI has many capabilities where you can have data that’s on the cloud or data that’s on the premises. You throw it into a couple of dashboards and now you’re able to share it, basically, on any medium.

So it’s a cross platform type of application, where you can use the web, you can use any kind of web browsers, any sort of mobile application, whether it’s Android or iOS operating systems. You can bend legs, you can basically play with Excel where you can actually extract data from Excel but also download data and be able to work in one environment. It’s ongoing, it’s forever. You could do a whole bunch of different things, basically, anywhere. You can customize your visualizations and edit them and publish them again. We’ll kind of show you how that process looks. And the best part is it’s not a very expensive add-on currently.

If you’re just adding on a license, it’s 999. There’s some licenses in Office 365 that actually include the Power BI as well. Like the 5 license, for instance, in Office 365. So what is this idea of Power BI and how do you get these dashboards in a minute, or not necessarily one minute only, but in a couple of minutes? So the first thing that it could do is there’s a natural language query. So you can actually throw in text, and it will give you that information that you need and pop that up. So you can have crews within your dashboard to be able to give you the information that you need right when you need it.

It gives you quick insight. So it’s a very good and quick visualization for you to see. It gives a high level understanding as well, if that’s what you require, but also a very in-depth and granular type of information as well, if that’s something that you’re more interested in. Whether it’s a C-level type of position or an executive, who just wants to kind of see how profitability is, for example, or just a high level understanding of what the company has been up to, you can have those but you can also go into in-depth and say, “Well, how is my so and so sales rep doing in this particular account or this particular region?” We can dive into that as well in our demo.

Power BI is integrated with Cortana, as well. So we have, obviously, there’s a lot of artificial intelligence that’s coming out now. And there’s a lot more scoping that I think that’s kind of progressing forward as well. There’s live dashboard. So you can actually see basically a live demonstration of how the products and how your customers or how the entities that you’ve put in there are changing over time, by region, and so on, so forth. So it’s not something that is static, it’s something that you can actually live and you will see whether you want to locate a particular department or, again, a particular account, you want to see how much revenue you’ve earned, you could do that by just one click. So it’s very, very powerful here, and I’ll kind of show you how these life dashboards work as well.

Then you can have customized visualizations. So you can actually create graphics, and you can create visualizations in your dashboard that are custom to the things that you’re doing. That, again, is very, very unique and very, very powerful at the same time. Then, of course, you can publish to the web. So it’s not something that you keep to yourself. Again, that idea of data culture, and how you can kind of move data and information and get all that available to the right people. You can publish it to the web, you can embed links onto your website, and you can see the growth that’s happening. You can have corporate profiles created here. I mean, sky is the limit. There isn’t many limitations to this application. And as far as use cases go for this.

There’s integration with the applications and services that are already included with Microsoft. For example, we talked about Excel and how Excel can be. You can export and import data and information from Excel directly. And that’s an important feature. A lot of companies this time actually use Excel as their data visualization tool, which isn’t really recommended. But it’s something that in small, medium sized businesses perhaps could work until you have to grow. So I would keep that in mind as well. And how you can publish those applications or those dashboards directly from Excel to the information that’s in Power BI.

And then you can actually have a seamless kind of experience on a cross-platform type of functionality where you can use Power BI on your phone. So you can actually create dashboards within minutes on your phone. With the right data you have, you can create it right on your mobile device. And that is truly powerful because a lot of the times actually we are on the goal, whether you need to edit or embed or create new dashboards from scratch, you could do that on the go. And there’s not a lot of applications out there that allow that kind of functionality and utilization and productivity.

So all in all, it creates a very powerful report with Power BI Desktop. Now one thing to keep in mind is the Power BI Desktop app, there’s actually a free version of that as well. Let’s say you’re sharing desktops or you’re sharing the dashboards with someone who may not be a Power BI user, you could do that. And what they really need is a Microsoft account, whether that’s a Live or Hotmail or any sort of account with an email address and throw it onto the Power BI Desktop, and they’ll be able to at least see the data that’s there. You can also restrict access to how much certain people have access to editing or not. So there’s a lot of control that’s in your hand as far as who gets the data, but also the ability to share that data when that’s required.

It’s very, very easy to kind of create, and I’ll kind of show you a high level. Again, it takes…you need to know your data to be able to do this fairly quickly. But at the same time, it takes some time for you to kind of position as well to have a fairly rough kind of demo today and show you potentially what it could look like. And again, the ability for you to connect all the data that’s around you. So there’s different data sources that you can connect to. It’ll actually show relationships of that data to you. So you can connect and link different data and different tables. And basically transform and clean your data for analysis purposes. And so that’s available as well.

We talked about that. We talked about the ability for you to have Power BI Desktop, and it’s just a one click publish. Let’s go right into this demo. Just give me one second. I have already opened up Power BI Desktop. So this is again a free application, you can download. And if you want to follow along, you can by any means. And I can also share this information as well. And you can just reach out to me and I can help you out there. So the Power BI Desktop, there’s a couple ways to kind of get data. Now the cleaner your data, the better it is because that’s how the cleaner visualizations will eventually become. And so there’s one way you can actually get data from the application as soon as it’s launched. Or you can look at recent data that’s been opened. But let’s say you don’t do that. I’m just going to X out of this.

This is what the Power BI Desktop screen looks like. So right now, as you can see, it’s a pretty blank canvas. There is not much on there that you can do. It’s clean. You just need to put some data in here. So let me do that right away. So we can click this button right here to get data. And you can see some different kind of sections that pop up here. These are all the different types of data that you can get. So Excel, PDF, different files, Access, SQL Servers. It’s quite long as far as how much data you can actually translate into Power BI. So you can actually use Dynamics now, Business Central. Whether it’s on-premise or not, Salesforce. All these ways, you can actually get data into Power BI and get that data working for you.

So important to realize that that you could use a lot of this, but let’s go with Excel. We’re going to create Excel type of data. And I’ve already filtered through some of that data. So let’s for the sake of today’s presentation focus on the sales performance data. So we’re really going to be looking at the sales departments and seeing how my company’s been doing as far as sales go and who’s involved.

Now as soon as I clicked that data, within a few seconds, I have this navigator page, which shows me all of the things in that file. So if I actually open up that Excel file…let me pull it up really, really quickly here for you. You will actually see that all that data that I have will actually translate very, very quickly onto the side, okay? So this is how my data looks at this time. So you’ve got different opportunities. You can look at all the different pages that I’ve gotten, it being organized over different spreadsheets. And when I will show you in Power BI is it will look identical. That will give you previews of this data. But at the same time, what it will do is it will help basically put that data in towards.

So you see these previews of Excel. You can actually edit from Power BI as well and edit these Excel files here, if you need to add let’s say more columns or more rows or change the data that’s there, maybe. You could do that within Power BI. You’ll need to import and export data all the time. I’m just going to probably select as much as I can. You can see all the previews popping up with all the different tables that are here. And I can select as many of these tables or as many of these spreadsheets as I would like that I want to create visualizations for. It could be all of them, it could be some of them, it could be just one or two of those data that I’m talking. It depends on what it is that you want to show.

For the sake of this, I’m going to show you the maximum amount of time it takes to, basically, put in all these spreadsheets. So this is a pretty large file. And it’ll actually load all that data. So you could see I’ve selected that and I click Load. And it’s processing now the queries. It’s basically putting it in the language that Power BI can understand. It’s editing, it’s putting, it’s cleaning up some of that data as well for you here. And it’s evaluating whether or not the data that’s there is appropriate for Power BI. And then of course, if it looks good just gives you check marks, and eventually you’ll get that data loaded. So this is this is just about as much time as I’ve seen at least these visualizations take as far as loading data and processing these queries.

Now what will happen is that data will actually show as ribbons under this fields column here on the right. And that’s where I could kind of start using different sections of that data or parts of that and create visualization. So now it’s just loading data into the model that I have. While that’s happening, I’ll kind of give you a preview of what you see here. So this is how you create visualization. So once that data is kind of loaded, visualizations will be connected or would be created through these kind of diagrams, whether it’s bar graphs, or pie charts, or other cool type of visualizations. This is what’s available at least in the in the free version.

And then of course, these are the values that it’s going to sort through. For example, there’s fields that you can add here, but also filters that you can create. What you can also do is change the different settings that are there and you can group different items, and so on, so forth, which I can show you as well. So we only went to get data. So far you can also get data from recent sources that you may have. You can enter data through here as well like I was mentioning. So you can enter data directly into the cells and you can also at the same time edit those queries as well through here like I was mentioning.

So for the sake of what we’re trying to show here today, as you can see, the data is here. This is the report functionality. This is where I can see my data and actually edit them so I can approve of different things. I can edit my data and queries here, add another column, for instance, or another row or just changed the data in general that’s in these cells. Or I’ll just get on this tab here. This is where you can kind of see the relationships. So you can actually see the different types of relationships that are being made. And if I just kind of get in closer here, you could see all of these connectors, for example, my accounts can be linked to this table particularly.

And this is done automatically. So I had to put in zero effort for this to happen. I just basically loaded the data off of Excel and Power BI did this for me. This is the power of business intelligence for you. So you’re looking at…and you could actually create those manually as well. But you could see the one-to-one relationships or one-to-any relationships that all of this has for the different types of tables and spreadsheets that were created. And you can create these as well. And you can create these as well. So it’s not like this is fixed. You could edit things as need be, for example, there’s a country in country religion, you could change that to whatever you can move things around. You can physically and manually connect them as well if need be. And if you need to manage those relationships as well.

So that’s kind of the relationship aspect of things, which is fairly cool, I guess, if you understand the ability of or the use of this functionality. But let’s go into our canvas against, like I said, fairly blank here today. But we’ll try to throw a couple things on there to kind of show you what it could potentially look like. I haven’t worked with this data, but let’s…I’ve built dashboards before on this. But let’s for the sake of a very beginner level type of thing, let’s throw in, let’s say, a bar graph. So you click the visualization that’s there or one of these. And you can see some things there.

Now, you have to fill these axes and values and filters and add these things. So we can take a look at some of our data, which I hope I labeled. Like if I labeled the tables and stuff appropriately, I’ll be actually able to see what’s there. But if you hit one of these ribbons, you could open up the different things that are there. So let’s say I want to look at all the accounts in that table, I just click that, and it will show me. As well as maybe the different regions that are, I don’t know, there per…whatever. You could click different things to be able to get data shown there for you.

Now, once, let’s say, this is created, you can actually edit a lot here. So you can make it as big as you want, as small as you want to kind of see. I may have probably not chosen the best type of visualization to show this data. But just trying to show you how you can interact with it. You can make it live to kind of show you a one particular thing. Now if I have more data, it actually interacts against the entire dashboard. So let’s put that like that, for instance.

You could actually change the different colors. Let’s say, you can look at the general legends and axes, you can change it, you can change the way that the data color shows. So between each region, if you have a…you can color code certain things. Let’s say, for example, this one, we want this to be this color, for instance. All that kind of changes right away. But you realize that that Power BI already have put pretty neutral colors here for you to kind of make things match. But you could change that to your own liking, as well. So let’s throw in something else on there as well. Let’s say, if we want to do a pie chart, which I don’t really use very much. I don’t think it provides as much data but few on a high level type of thing.

Let’s take a look at what we could do with pie charts. Just going down all of the data that I’ve put here. Let’s say, for example, we want to look at the number of countries that we have. And all the countries that are interacting with this particular table, this region, and maybe we want to look at sales targets, I don’t know. Again, not my ideal version of which visualization to use to get this kind of information, but you can see Power BI is putting the title of my visualization here onto the dashboard as well. And that’s just based off of what I had clicked to do that right. And you can see, again, all the different types of countries. And if I hover over this, you can actually see the data. So what I’ve highlighted and what’s on target and what’s not, you can look at how much. It’s fairly for each country, you can see the details of that by just clicking on it.

Now, if any of these two interact, this time, if I click Spain, all the information for Spain actually comes in out of here. If I click, let’s say Indonesia, all the information that’s related to Indonesia kind of highlights, and same with the U.S. It all changes towards to how you kind of…so you can see things a little bit more better. But like I said, we’re just building something out real quick here. And I’ll show you, like, a more finished product in a couple minutes as well. You could create different things, like you could create something like this, and will actually show you like a graph that perhaps how much sales you’ve had and are you on target or not. And you could click a couple of these checks and you could see that.

And you could check it basically by whatever. Like quota or so on, so forth. You can actually have a tick that shows you and again changes as these sales change. So you can connect these visualizations to real data on the backend. And so you don’t have to import every time. It just moves as you need to move. And you can publish it, essentially, as many times as you require. You can also create legends in here. You can create line graphs, for example. You can create a whole bunch of different types of visualizations to kind of help do that. The really cool one is this funnel one as well, where you can actually create a funnel effect and see the growth in that.

Another cool one that you can do and that’s fairly prominent is, for example, this map. Where you could actually open up this map and embed the same link on your website, for instance, and it’ll show you, if I was to put in different parts of the world in here, for example, if I put some of the country accounts in here, I can see different regions and the amount of sales that are happening in that region. For instance, I’m just going to make this fairly large at this time so just so you can kind of see. So I could look at country and region and where all my kind of locations are. But I can also see the quotas that are there.

So you notice the circle is kind of increasing, some are smaller, some are larger, but if I actually go hover over them or even click one of them, you could see how much, for example, the quota is in this particular country compared to this particular region. So it is pretty spontaneous. And you can see, for example, the sales that are happening. If you don’t want to look at quotas, you could take a look at the number of sales that are happening there in the region, where your highest revenue areas are or what product, for instance. Maybe there’s a product that works really well in North America, but it doesn’t really sell very much in Europe or other parts of the world. You could see that with these big circles and the size of these circles that come up as well.

So it’s pretty important here and how you could use that again. Fairly entry level as to what it is, but if you take a look, we’ve already created at least some information that we could if we were to dive in a little deeper. A couple more minutes, we could refine some of this stuff. But really, within the span of five minutes, you can actually get a whole bunch of data onto this and change it. And it’s all interactive all in all. You can, for example, if I want to edit this one, I don’t like the way that this particular visualization looks. I think I could go in here and change it. I can add certain things and just drag different sections in here as well. Whether or not that will give me data or not, that’s another thing. I’m just putting in random data at this time. But, for example, if you want to drag products into this field, and maybe which products…I don’t have information, but you can see which products are selling or what’s not. But you could throw in different values to be able to do it and you can group those values. You can have multiple different values in here at the same time and see the different interactions that happen. So it’s not limiting in any way. It’s quite interactive as well.

So let me show you actually how a…so one that I’ve kind of already finished that you can kind of see and within the same similar data, for example, the sales data, let’s go with that one. So this is something that we popped out. But within similar data at least, you can look at…I’m not sure if I click that. You can look at other dashboards that I’ve already created and see some ideas at least of that. Now, over here you can also create multiple pages and multiple different dashboards, so if you want to title this related to only performance on certain accounts, or account holders, and the next one can be for other things like quotas or per country or how you want to kind of label that you can.

But here’s a quick look into one, maybe a finished product as one finished dashboard here that you can publish directly as well. So I didn’t talk about publishing, but maybe that’s one thing that I’ll touch on here as well is if, let’s say, you you’ve kind of decided that this is the visualization that I want to choose, you can…I mean, I had background colors and logos and things like that. You could just click Publish right here. And it’ll literally show you all the ways that you can publish it. So if I click Publish, so you can either select different destinations that you can publish that account to. And these are all accounts that are in, for example, my Office 365. So I’ve got teams and stuff that are set up. I can publish it to a particular internal team. But I can also…if I select my workspace connect to external sources, and actually share files and links as well that you can embed, like I mentioned.

So let’s take a look quick look. Here’s a pipeline report. I’ve got these filters, these texts that you can, again, get from these visualization areas. And these texts basically helped me filter through all the data. So I’ve selected different regions, countries, and/or product categories that I’ve filtered my data through. So let’s say I want to look at only Europe as a region. You notice the whole data kind of moves and interacts with one another to get me Europe. And within Europe, all the countries changes to only European countries, I want to know only, let’s say, my pipeline in Germany or in Spain.

And if you notice, everything kind of changes while I am working through this. So in Europe, in France, and now I want to look at a particular category of my products. So let’s look take a look at the core. And if you notice all of that, again, is fairly interactive. And I can do the same. So if I don’t want to filter through here, let’s say, I can actually filter through within these metrics here. So this is, for example, my different phases in the pipeline, how these steps kind of go and where the most of the opportunity lies as far as value. And I can actually interact with that. So in this phase particularly, this is what’s happening, all the different things are. In my negotiation phase, for instance, this is what it looks like.

But that’s for the sake of…we’re not going to filter it down. We’re just going to look at the data all in all. Here’s a graph. We can look at France directly. We could look at North America from here. You could do the same thing that you’re doing to these also by just clicking at these charts. So you can look at the opportunity by accounts, for instance, you can you can look at the revenue that’s there. You can look at all sorts of different things. A salesperson or sales department may use it different than a finance department or a CEO level type of position that just wants a little more high level, but just for the sake of this I decided to show you more of the sales side of things as well. You can look at performance of different accounts and regions as well. So if you look at the variants that are there within the different targets of sales that are created, Spain where they’re doing really, really well, whereas Germany may not be doing…there’s a lot more variants in Germany than you’d like you.

So these are actually really cool as well, these little boxes. These are different categories that are there. And you can actually see just by looking at it that electronics probably makes…it’s a pretty large mix. So if I look at electronics, my target margin was 15, my actual margin is actually on 7%. And I’ve got…average discounts on this is probably the highest out of all the other products. Whereas if I was to look at, let’s say, exercise, you can take a look at that, you can look at apparel, for instance, reacts with that, you can take a look at lighting and all of those different kind of things changing.

You can also add more things so you could see which things were checked here and how you can add more data and visualize just that as well. Again, like I said, you could have quotas, for example, just ideas from a sales perspective at least of the things that you can do in different regions, and how they’re performing, and what they’re doing are indicated by these circles. So you could take a really good look and say, “Oh, yeah, Germany or turkey or UK are doing so and so. Are they on target? Are they not on target.” And so that you can also filter through here. So if I was to go to just Germany, you noticed everything changes. And that’s the live feature and trends. So this is, again, you could see the different growth or whether it’s declining, or what’s happening as far as how the market is reacting to the products that are out there. You could have a pretty good visualization of what that data looks like.

And that’s the gist of it. I mean, like I said, if you could have data that’s more…let’s say, for executive level you’re not really wanting to show as in-depth of what’s going on, but maybe your CEO or CFO or COO or some other executive needs certain data that’s just present where you can just kind of see and see how the company is doing. You don’t really need to actually play around with it very much. You could take a look at some executive reports and how that would potentially look like for your company as soon as they open up. But that’s the primary essence of it. So if it does open up, fantastic. But if it doesn’t open up, that’s quite all right as well. And we can…oh, there it is.

So you could see whether it’s a pipeline or you can have…that’s my same one. Where are you exec report?. So all the different things as well, but you could see a different level of information that’s there for them. So what’s happening this year compared to previous year, how my targets have been, what’s actually going on as well. This is, again, more on the sales side of things. But you can see different things. I think I’m going to end it off here but if there’s any questions, feel free to ask now or reach out to me. And my contact information, I can kind of share that here as well. And feel free to reach out. And if there’s any questions on Power BI or anything within the Office 365, I would love to be able to help you guys out as well. So thank you so much. And I’ll give it back to Melissa here.

Melisa: We’re good. No questions have come in yet.

Ziad: Fantastic. So here’s my information, feel free to reach out if there’s anything that I can help out as far as creating these dashboards or helping you get some cleaning or any other data or give you some pricing even. We would love to be able to do that. Thanks so much everyone. And have a great rest of your day.

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