The magic of Power BI has taken the business world by storm and, no wonder, enterprises are making a beeline for this incredible and powerful tool. If you’re planning to start out with Power BI, it’s important to be aware of the challenges involved. Getting on top of these challenges can help you accelerate your time to insights and get the most out of your power BI investments. In this blog we list out the things you must be aware of to make Power BI adoption a success.

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Know Before You Jump the Bandwagon

An uncalculated implementation of this tool stops executives from understanding and leveraging its functionality to its true potential. To be more specific, it is essential for enterprises to define their specific needs before they subscribe to this tool.

Things to do to address this challenge:

  • It is important to assess the nature of a user’s need at all the levels of an enterprise for a prudent application of Power BI. For instance, while a CEO will need robust Power BI visualizations to accelerate decision-making, employees at managerial levels will require microscopic insights into every data point.
  • It is recommended that executives conduct a thorough business assessment which furnishes insights to devise a Proof of Concept (PoC) to put forward a business case for the application of the Power BI tool. This provides a profound understanding of different user needs that aids in extracting the true value of the Power BI tool across an enterprise.

Did you know?

The lack of features such as graphical representation, options to filter out specific information in an excel sheet were causing major hindrances for UPS to analyze customer feedback on their services across regions. They used Power BI dashboard with multiple filters that helped them to access data at a granular level and get correct insights. The tool was enabled with features such as easy sharing, file backup, anytime access which boosted user productivity for UPS.

Expenses Overriding True Business Value

It is again a side effect of the one-size-fits-all concept. There will be a certain set of users who will need access to all the advanced features of Power BI to design reports from scratch while there are users who will leverage only limited features of this tool.

How to overcome this challenge?

  • It is essential that executives determine a thorough value proposition of this tool keeping various user needs in context. Bringing the cost perspective into the actual business need will aid in extracting the true value out of this tool.
  • Cloud-based Power BI solution is an answer to small business in particular, as it does not entail large expenses for deployment. They can partner with vendors that provide Power BI solutions that are scalable and does not require extensive IT support.

Did you know?

Technology-oriented Metro Bank replaced Oracle’s costly business intelligence tools with Power BI as the latter easily integrated with the financial enterprise’s data sources. The Power BI tools business and IT staffs to quickly develop insightful reports that rendered the business more adaptive and agile. The combination of Azure and Power BI has proven critical for Metro Bank to track and manage its project costs.

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Breaking the Departmental Siloes

A proper assessment of user needs becomes a daunting task if not impossible with department working in siloes in an organization. Such isolation can also hurt the true potential of this tool.

What can you do to overcome this challenge?

  • Teams coming together can do a better planning on the future initiatives to be taken capitalizing on the functionality of a Power BI dashboard. For instance, the sales generation and marketing teams can closely collaborate on business initiatives based on the insights gained from a common dashboard reflecting the marketing statistics.
  • Common data model is a widely leveraged data storage convention which enables data ingestion generated by Power BI and can be used by Azure. In a similar fashion, Azure-generated data can be redirected to CDM folders and shared with Power BI.

Did you know?

Heathrow airport had successfully broken this department silo to access data from baggage and cargo tracking, flight schedules departments among others and convey the same to air traffic controllers, baggage handling department. They used Power BI to convert the data into comprehensive and insightful reports to streamline baggage movement for 80 million passengers.

Vices of Self-service Deployments

While self service Power BI implementation has enabled easier and a quicker access to data, an unrestrained usage of the same across siloed departments led to a confusing data mesh. Such a data scenario is extremely hard to be deciphered to gain insights of any value. This also led to conflicting results that created enormous confusion among decision-makers.

Things to do to address this challenge:

  • It is essential that such self-service tools are treated with specific data for the users to create better data charts. Enterprises are advised to create a standard Power BI dashboard and metrics to enable users design their own data chart. Ideally self-service Power BI dashboards should have KPIs that distinguish one from the other dashboard.
  • Leverage Power BI tool’s robust data security architecture to store and secure the user-generated analytics. Data management teams must curate and store data in warehouses upfront that can act as a central repository to help avoid any confusions.

Did you know?

Cummins has struck the right balance between dependence on IT departments to get report and allowing self-service with minimal governance to departments to access and generate reports. The user of this organization can now develop reports using Power BI and create their own custom analytics with minimal training, while working with trusted data obtained from a single source.

Fueling the Tool with the Wrong Data

Your Power BI tool may be packed with features, but filling it with unorganized or wrong data, defeats the purpose of using this tool. Inserting wrong data can be caused either because of rummaging through the irrelevant data to get insights or because of an in-depth comprehension of the underlying statement exhibited by the data.

How to address this challenge?

  • A user has to have a complete understanding of the intricacies of data to fully utilize the functionality of the Power BI toolbox.
  • The above can be achieved by designing a data collection process that involves data management strategy and education on ways to accurately enter data.

Did you know?

Cerner faced the challenge of data scattered across multiple sources that were often unreliable and were not pertinent to immediate causes in hand. They used Microsoft Azure data platform to centralize the data storage system to make the process of determining data quality easier. Power BI replaced Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition as a visualization tool as it easily integrates with Data lake storage.

Measuring the Right Metrics at the Right Time

The Power BI dashboard can be used to measure the performance of any department at any point of time. However, enterprises make the mistake of measuring the metrics at the end of the year. This denies them the chance of an early evaluation of their performance, thereby defeating the purpose of using a Power BI tool.

Things to do to overcome this challenge:

  • Ideally, the performance of a department must be tracked through a wide range of metrics at regular intervals with the SMEs staying on top of the data. The data insights generated by robust Power BI visualizations should be used as performance benchmarks for internal evaluations.
  • Enterprises can leverage online KPI dashboard software that takes away the burden of regular performance tracking off SMEs. This software aids departments to view and convey their numbers according to their own individual requirements.

Did you know?

Lawrence Township leveraged the abilities of Power BI and Smartsheet Technology to create an integrated system termed as Attendance, Behavior, Academics, and Incidents (ABAI). This system helps teachers and other education officials to track student performance by gathering data that include students’ grades and attendance records.

Parting note

While the emerging challenges can be more, these should not be deterrents against making the most of this digital disruption. Enabling an internal and a proactive determination of these Power BI challenges is the start of a beneficial utilization of the Power BI toolbox. As discussed above a proper strategy and external guidance is the answer to enterprises’ quest for deriving maximum value from the Power BI tool.

Who We Are and What Makes Us an Expert?

FlatworldEdge specializes in implementation and support of business intelligence solutions. Our outcome-driven BI services have enabled businesses across the US implement Power BI solutions and streamline operations as per their specific needs. We have a successful track record of tailoring business intelligence solutions to business workflows for maximum gains.

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