Microsoft provides power data visualising tools, such as Power BI, Power Visual, and Power Query, yet many Azure users aren’t getting the most out of these great insights. Data visualisation enables enterprises to get better outcomes from their data by:
- Improving team collaboration
- Creating easier visualisation of complex data
- Real-time collaboration on reports
- Syncing reports to your data source
- Enabling offline viewing
- Creating reports on any data
To maximise the benefits of these data visualising tools, you need to learn how to use them properly and in the right context, which is where we can help at 101 Data Solutions. Here is a summary of the great data visualisation tools available.
Power BI is a powerful visualisation tool that allows you to transform data from multiple sources and visualise it in many different ways. You can build dashboards, create data visualisations, and publish your content for others to view. It’s a great tool for analysts and people who like to see data in visual forms.
Power Visual is a visualisation tool that allows you to create charts and graphs. Like Power BI, it connects to multiple data sources and will enable you to publish your visualisations to the web. You can also create interactive reports and visualisations that allow your users to change the data displayed and see the impact of their changes immediately. You can use it on your computer or share your visualisations with others using SharePoint.
This query tool allows you to connect to data sources, transform data, and create new connections. It’s a bit like Power Visual, but it doesn’t allow you to publish your visualisations to the web. Instead, you use it to create data connections that you can then use in Power Visual or Power BI to create visualisations. In addition, you can use Power Query to transform data from different sources, including SQL databases and files, into something that other data visualisation tools can use. You can even use it on your computer to connect to Excel and CSV files.
SharePoint and Microsoft Flow
If you want to build workflows that generate reports or automatically create visualisations, Microsoft Flow and SharePoint are great tools to use. Flow is a tool created for building workflows, making it easy to use. You just create a flow and add visualisations and tables to show whatever data you want. You can also add buttons for people to manually trigger the flow and do things like create reports or create visualisations.
Flow is great because it allows you to use your existing data from Excel and other Microsoft tools to create visualisations or build reports. Flow isn’t a visualisation tool; it’s a workflow tool for creating visualisations. Flow allows you to make basic visualisations, but if you want to create something more advanced, you can use SharePoint. You can add visualisations to your workflows and transform your data before displaying it. For example, you can select a date range, filter data, or create a report. You can also share your visualisations with others by adding them to a SharePoint site.
Microsoft Teams is a team collaboration tool that combines communications, team calendars, and basic task management with a centralised knowledge base. You can use Teams to build and edit visualisations, add data, and then share it with your team. You can also create visuals like a bar chart and see it update as you add or remove data. You can also create a tab for your visualisations so everyone on the team can see them. Using the tab, you can also schedule when the visualisations are generated, so they’re always up to date.
Automation is a product that allows you to create workflows and automate tasks. You can create and manage your workflows through the Azure portal or using a language like PowerShell or Python. Automation can be used to create visualisations and reports, but it’s a powerful tool for so much more. You can use it to create any process, from generating reports to updating data in your database. One of the biggest benefits of Azure Automation is that it can scale as your business grows.
Azure Data Explorer (ADC)
Data Explorer is another product that allows you to create and run queries against your data sources. It’s a desktop tool that’s designed to be easy to use. You can create visualisations and reports and even schedule them to run automatically. Data Explorer also connects to SQL and other data sources, but it goes further. You can also use it to create and run your queries against your data sources. Then, you can schedule those queries to run automatically and transform the results into a visualisation or a report. Data Explorer is great because it allows you to create more advanced questions than what you might be able to do in Power Query. It also allows you to automatically schedule those queries to run and generate visualisations or reports.
As experts in the data visualisation tools available, we can help guide you through the process. We can assist with selecting the most appropriate solution and implementing the chosen solution with the desired visualisation. We can also help maintain and update the visualisation as required. Contact 101 Data Solutions today; we’d be happy to help.
About Brett Edgecombe, Managing Director, 101 Data Solutions
Even as a child living in Canada, Brett always had an interest in technology, so starting his career within the technology industry was a natural progression in 1998 when it began at the UK’s first ISP, Compuserve Interactive Services in Bristol.
He has first-hand experience in modern Enterprise Storage Infrastructure solutions, having worked at Sun Microsystems in 2000, where he worked with large commercial and education customers across the UK.
Brett created 101 Data Solutions in 2008 with a focus on Data Storage centric delivered through high-quality technology solutions direct to businesses throughout the UK. His strategic vision and sector knowledge allows him to bring excellence to 101’s customers through experience, technical foresight and relationship building.