Written by Lucas Laumans, Enterprise Integration Consultant at Rojo Consultancy.
As integration experts, working with data is our passion. Every day we help our customers to get connected and to share data across applications and organisations. Unfortunately, often the fruits of our effort remain invisible. If only there was an intuitive, scalable, affordable and multi-purpose solution available which would allow us to analyse and visualize data in beautiful and meaningful dashboards. At Rojo, we believe Power BI is the right tool to drive a data culture across any organization.
Let me explain why.
Originally starting as an add-on for Microsoft Excel, nowadays the application is a full-blown data visualisation tool with ever-improving AI capabilities, and with the monthly release of new features, Power BI is becoming easier to use than Excel. Power BI is intuitive – really, it’s easy as Excel!
The Data Analysis Expression (DAX) language used in Power BI has a lot of similarity to Microsoft Excel expressions and is sometimes complex to understand and implement, but the language is very powerful and puts your citizen analysts at the driving wheel. The User Interface of both the Power BI Desktop application (local installation to develop reports) and the Service (cloud) is very intuitive and looks very similar to other Microsoft applications like Excel, Word and PowerPoint. The resemblance with these tools makes it easier to familiarise yourself with the tools.
You can download the Power BI Desktop application for free and immediately start connecting to your data sources using the 70+ available connectors. Data from different sources can be brought together and combined in a single model for detailed analysis.
Why Power BI?
- Scalable – Size doesn’t matter*
The Power BI Service is a web-based User Interface hosted in Azure which allows the end-users to interact with the data from everywhere on any device. Native build apps for iOS and Android enable users to walk around with the latest organisational information at their fingertips. Data can be stored in the cloud and/or on-premise depending on your needs. The platform scales with your organisation.
*modelling capabilities within Power BI Desktop are limited, but great to test-drive ideas and solutions before integrating them in your data landscape, e.g. databases, warehouses or data lakes.
- Affordable – Great value for money
Depending on the size of the organisation and the requirements, e.g. cloud versus on-premise, Power BI offers different pricing options. Basic pricing starts at EUR 8.40 per user per month. A user is defined as someone creating or consuming reports and dashboards. For this amount, you get a fully managed, modern, self-service BI solution in the cloud, which is monthly updated with new enhancements.
At Rojo, we use Power BI for multiple purposes.
Firstly, we use Power BI to manage our Project Portfolio and to track the development of our products by combining information from data sources like Microsoft Planner, Microsoft SharePoint Online and Jira Service Desk. Bringing all data together helps us to identify potential bottlenecks and assign resources accordingly. Secondly. we continuously monitor and improve the service levels provided by our Managed Services team with Power BI. Some of the AI features such as the key influencers visual and the decomposition tree visual help us to identify root-cause relationships so drive improvement of our products and services. Last but not least, we use Power BI to monitor the performance of some of the integrations we run for our customers. Monitoring at the integration level helps us to identify issues sooner and allows us to react quickly.
Are you interested to learn more about Power BI or the services we have to offer? From our offices in the Netherlands and Spain, we are keen to take on any challenge you might have for us – get in touch with us, now!