If you had a chance to read my other posts, my team was working on some kind of BI Framework for Dynamics AX 2012. The initial goal of BI Framework was to simplify the process of reports development/delivery (Operational Reports). However, once we finished with SSRS reports, we have come up with idea to also bring interactive reporting – Power BI. At the same time we didn’t want users to go to the Power BI portal. Our BI Framework is a one stop shop for all reporting. User have only one form with all reports for different systems, different streams + one security model driven by AX roles. Power BI should fit into that unique model. User should have exactly the same expirience running normal SSRS reports together with new interactive Power BI reports. We know that Power BI is coming with AX 7, but what about all AX 2012 implementations?:)
Power BI web api
Currently for developers, Power BI expose set of REST api link We are interested more in Reports and Dashboards api. Reports api allows you to bring your Power BI Reports to your custom web application. All authentication is happening against Azure AD. You can get a complete sample from github.
Where to use Power BI Reports
Whole BI component could be divided into 3 main layers: Operational, Tactical and Strategical.
Operational Reports: Continuously monitor core business processes with real-time transactional data. Alert your managers upon thresholds being exceeded or upon an exception in the data.
• Tactical Reports: Provide the department manager with a quick view into how his or her department is performing and highlight areas of concern—so the manager can take action to forestall less-than-optimal performance.
• Strategic Reports: Provide senior managers and executives with a glance of the organization’s performance in relation to strategic goals. These reports are typically based upon data residing in one of the organizations data warehouses or data marts and contain time-stamped snapshots of data.
Operational reports in AX are SSRS reports. However for Tactical and Strategic layers, Power BI is just a perfect tool. There are also might be good examples of applying Power BI reports for operational layer as well.
Operational Power BI Reports
When you have 2k employees using your reports, you probably don’t want to have 2k Power BI users. Those users might not need a mobile app for Power BI. They probably just need to have a simple interactive good looking dashboard/report. For that case, you will need to have just a one service account. That service account should have access to all generic Power BI reports. After, using BI Framework, we configure security in AX.
The same user expirience for SSRS and Power BI reports:
When openning the report:
Let me know if you have any questions or would like to know more…