Self-serve data prep at lightening fast speed with Power BI dataflows and Azure Data Lake

Power BI is an amazing tool as it fulfills all level of BI needs, whether you are using it for data exploration, as self-service BI to analyze the data, as an Enterprise BI solution, or embedding into your internal or external portal.

I have been working with Power BI since it was made available back in 2015 and have worked with many kinds of organizations and users. Power BI has come a long way since then and I am wholeheartedly enjoying this journey. Although I have seen different businesses and users using Power BI in different ways, I have noticed that there is one thing they all have in common – that users need to wait on the IT/technical team to prepare the data and store it somewhere before they can connect to the data and start working on analyzing/visualizing it. As we all know, data is the fuel in any BI tool and on time data availability with the correct shape/structure makes data analysis much easier. Without proper data, a BI tool is like having a Ferrari but not having the proper fuel to drive it. Sometime data prep takes longer than expected and business miss the opportunity to make smart and timely decisions. This is where Power BI dataflows come into the picture.

I have been working with Power BI dataflows for the last 9 months or so and worked on two major projects where dataflows helped in data preparation – including complex data transformation which used to take hours and can now be completed within minutes. It saved a lot of time for the business to try and get value out of their data and the business was now able to deliver the solution on time – leading to happy clients 😊. Of course, there were a few challenges on the way since this is a comparatively new technology, but at the end of the day everything worked out great.

In an upcoming meetup here in Vancouver, Canada, I will be speaking about my experience and journey using dataflows:

  • how has it helped organizations to prepare data at lightning speed?
  • what challenges have I faced?
  • what are some things to avoid?
  • what are the best practices?
  • and what is in the future?

The presentation I have prepared for this meetup is available to download at the link below. If you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to reach out by email or leave your comments below and I will get back to you ASAP!

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