Microsoft pushed a new feature to Dynamics 365 and model-driven Power Apps during the second half of 2022. This new way to visualize data and gain insights allows users to view embedded Power BI reports in these apps, without building the report from scratch.
Here we will explore how to leverage this feature for basic reporting and obtain valuable insights using it.
Since these apps – including Dynamics 365 - are all built on top of Dataverse, they’re backed by your core business data.
Note: Power BI is connecting to Dynamics 365 on behalf of the user that clicked the 'Visualize this view' button, so any security rules that have been set up with Dataverse will apply. Users should see the same data they see within the app itself.
In this article we cover:
- Navigation to 'Visualize this view'
- Filtering the original view for in-depth exploration
- Saving the report and dataset
- Enabling this feature for your app
- Considerations and limitations
- More information
Navigation to ‘Visualize this view’
- Navigate to any grid view e.g. Messaging/Email/Sent.
- Your default grid view of Sent emails will load. You can toggle between views using the Views list on the top left (1.).
- Columns in the grid view are configurable using the Edit columns feature (2.).
- An orange Visualize this view button appears in the ribbon above the table (3.).
- When you select ‘Visualize this view,’ that data from the grid view will be used to automatically generate visualizations using Power BI. Here is an example of the default Quick Summary created for the Emails 'Sent' grid view. Note the header row which contains ‘Sum of’ data elements (4.).
- Use the Your Data panel on the right (5.) to easily change the data you are interested in visualizing.
- By clicking on any component e.g. the pie chart above (6.), you can easily personalize it to a bar chart or any other visualization type allowed by Power BI (7.).
- You can also configure the legend, values and further details and tooltips (8.).
Filtering the original view for in-depth exploration
The data visualized is based on the data in your grid view. If you have applied any filters to the grid, that filtered data will be used in the Power BI visuals.
In this example, a filter was applied to show a specific time frame (‘Sent On’ column) and another one to choose the ‘Campaign Automation’ category (‘Email Sent Type’ column). For instance, if the view is filtered down to just 17 rows of data, only 17 rows will be visualized through Power BI.
This makes it very easy to iteratively explore your data, jumping back and forth between filtering in the grid and visualizing with Power BI, until you find the insights you’re looking for.
Saving the report and dataset
- Once you’ve finished your exploration and are ready to save, just select the Save button in the app bar (9.) to save your personalization to your Personal Power BI workspace.
- You will be prompted to name your file in Power BI, specify the workspace to save it to and if your organization has enabled sensitivity label, set a label. You can save to any workspace that you have a Contributor, Member, or Admin role assigned.
- To be able to see the Sensitivity label at the bottom, it needs to be activated previously by your admin.
- Once you've saved the report, it becomes a normal Power BI report.
- Once the report is in the Power BI service, that is where you’ll access it going forward.
- The Show data table button on the ribbon (10.) loads the originating table into the window.
Enabling this feature for your app
For the Visualize the list feature to show in your apps, admins need to enable it in the Power Apps Maker portal. Admins will find the option in the Settings dialog under Features. Read about configuring app properties within the Power Apps Maker portal to learn more.
Considerations and limitations
- You may notice more columns within the report than you see in the original view. These fields could include foreign keys for the columns or hierarchy, or URL fields that are being used within the original view for purposes other than columns.
- The report created through this feature is temporary. Unless you decide to save it, the experience times out after a set amount of time. At that point you need to close and reopen the report to continue exploring your data. For now, the timeout occurs at one hour.
- You can download the data from this report. However, Power BI uses single-sign on and Direct Query for the auto-generated report, so the data you can download is only the data you have permission to see in Dynamics. You can’t access data that you normally wouldn't be able to see. Power BI admins can restrict download to Excel on the Power BI side by managing it in the Power BI admin portal. See the article Export and sharing tenant settings for details.
To consult more details, visit these Power BI and Microsoft articles: