Intelligent Reporting, Efficient Analysis, Beautiful Design

Power BI & MS Azure Work Better Together

Technical articles 10. 03. 2023 minutes

Its advantages are clear - you save money on purchasing and operating your own infrastructure, gain the benefits of the cloud such as scalability and flexibility, and a variety of services. The data visualization options are much broader, and various analytical tools can provide insights that would otherwise need to be sought manually. Cloud Business Intelligence tops the chart of technological trends.

One of the most effective ways to use cloud BI currently is the combination of Power BI technology and Azure Analytics analytical tools.

Power BI: The pinnacle among reporting tools responsive to community needs

Power BI is a Microsoft service for easy data visualization. Its tools allow users to easily analyze and report on business data. It is designed to be usable even by someone without technical knowledge - it works on a very similar principle to MS Excel, so if you can work with Excel, you can work with Power BI. Compared to Excel, Power BI offers many more options for designing charts and reports.

No data analyst needed to create a report in Power BI

No data analyst is needed to create a report in Power BI. Moreover, Power BI is developing the fastest among all available tools and can promptly respond to the needs of users and the community.

“Power BI is currently the most prominent reporting tool on the market. Microsoft releases updates every month - updates and improvements. This is incomparable with the rest of the market, which does it quarterly or once every six months.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

MS Azure Analytical Services: Alerts not only on what's happening, but also why it's happening

In addition to more efficient data visualization, you can easily integrate Power BI with a multitude of MS Azure services that offer automatic analysis, insights, push notifications, and other features. Such services save users a tremendous amount of time that they would otherwise have to spend working with data and analyzing it.

“Imagine you're a regional sales manager. The system will monitor data, and if there is an unusual deviation, it will send you an alert. But it doesn't end there. In addition to the alert on what and where it's happening, MS Azure will also analyze why it's happening.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

Better design and additional features thanks to free import of third-party tools

Although Microsoft works on improving its tools on a monthly basis, some services may still not be sufficient for everyone. For example, bar charts or cash flow charts may seem outdated to many users. Therefore, Power BI allows the free import of third-party tools, such as design.

“Microsoft is the only one that allows free import of third-party tools. One practical example is Charticulator. You can design a graph in it, export it as a template, import it into Power BI, and then work with your own design.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

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More than 80 data connectors enable working with data regardless of the original infrastructure

If you want to use Power BI, the original infrastructure doesn't matter. Power BI offers an unmatched number of data connectors (solutions that allow linking data analysis tools with data sources), allowing you to securely connect Power BI to various types of databases, clouds, and data centers.

“The ability to connect various data sources is crucial for businesses with completely different infrastructures. Microsoft has penetrated almost all backends, so with Power BI, you can connect anything from Excel and CWS to SAP.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

Azure Adviser & Pay As You Go: Don't spend more than necessary

The advantage of the entire system is the Pay As You Go principle - you only pay for databases and servers that you actively use. Once you turn off a service, you are not charged for it. Easy monitoring of the health status of services through Azure Adviser, which monitors the entire system and displays its status on the dashboard, also saves you costs.

“Thanks to Azure Adviser, you can find out if you are efficiently using the services you purchased in Azure, the utilization of services and virtual machines, whether something is running over the weekend when you don't need it. You'll find out if you're not overpaying, if you haven't overburned the purchase of disk capacity, servers, CPUs, and so on.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

Azure migration service: an easy path to a data warehouse in the cloud

If you decide to migrate a data warehouse, you can use Azure migration service, which is set up to automate the entire process and is user-friendly. Where a team of people proficient in IT and ETL was needed before, today, cloud tools can easily guide you through the whole process.

Invite a cloud architect for the purchase of services

According to Ondřej Thaisz, migration should not be underestimated. He recommends consulting with experts for the purchase of cloud services and for setting up reporting itself. A certified cloud architect understands the offer and will purchase only what you really need for migration and operation, without over or underdimensioning the services.

“Technical knowledge is needed for cloud migration. You need to know, for example, what load balancing is, so that the application doesn't crash during peak hours, so that databases aren't overloaded, and so on. Knowledge and experience are needed for that, which a layman simply doesn't have.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

Power BI Setup: Don't underestimate the start, turn to an expert and spend 70% of the time prototyping and 30% on deployment

The most common mistake of companies deciding to use Power BI, and by extension, other Microsoft services, is underestimating the initial setup of the entire system.

“We are often approached by someone who tries it first on their own or with someone who doesn't have the necessary certifications. Then it turns out that one report took several minutes to load for the client. The data model was poorly configured, where each filtering action had to go through the entire giant table, which took a very long time. No one has the energy for that.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

Expert knows what data you'll be looking for even before you do

To fully utilize the added value of BI in the cloud, it is worth contacting an expert - a professional with certification for cloud services, preferably with experience in your industry, at the beginning.

“What's great about our work is that use cases repeat relative to the industry a company is in. I know use cases in insurance, in health care, I roughly know what people are looking for, and I can be a step ahead. In the past, people did their own analyses based on the BI report. That's no longer necessary today. A cloud architect sets up analyses for you because he knows your use case.”

Jan Hron, Business Director at LinkSoft

Our experienced certified cloud architects can help with:

  • Choosing the right approach to using cloud technologies,
  • Assisting you in selecting the best solution in terms of costs, implementation time, scalability, performance, security, and resilience to failures,
  • Finally, designing and setting up dashboards and tool features to save you time, money, and work exactly as they should.

Are you interested in Power BI & MS Azure or another option for migrating BI to the cloud?

If you are planning to migrate to the cloud, considering Power BI, or already using Cloud BI but feel like you might be overpaying or not fully utilizing its services, get in touch with us.

We would be happy to schedule a consultation with you.

... or schedule a meeting with Mirka to discuss your project together.

Mirka Krupková | Business Development Manager