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Friday, October 9, 2015

Data Visualization Options in SharePoint and Office 365

A big thank you to everyone that attended my recent presentation last week in Houston on Data Visualization Options in SharePoint 2013 and Office 365.  We had a great turn out for our round table presentation with a lot of great dialog and questions.

You can view the presentation deck from our session here:

To summarize a few points from the session, Microsoft has several great data visualization tools available for SharePoint, including:

  • Excel Services
  • PowerPivot
  • SSRS
  • PowerView
  • PowerBI
  • Custom code with JavaScript
  • PowerBI
  • Datazen
  • Performance Point
  • Visio Services

Our presentation did not cover Performance Point or Visio Services due to the relatively low usage we see of those components.

Knowing which tool to use in which scenario can be really challenging.  So as part of the presentation we talked about the 3 questions you need to ask your self when choosing a tool, and we went through following use cases to help you decide the best tool for the job.  To recap that information...

The 3 questions to ask yourself when selecting a SharePoint data visualization tool:

  • What do you want to do with your data? Do you want to create reports, create dashboards, data analysis, data discovery?
  • Which devices are users consuming data on?  Are they using desktops, tablets, smart phones?
  • Where is your data located?  Is your data on premise or in the cloud?

The various use cases we went through were the following, with our recommended data visualization tool.

Use Case 1

I am an Excel pro.  I have a lot of data. I have SharePoint on-prem… and I need to provide and share info to many users on Intranet

Recommended tool: Power Pivot

Use Case 2

I have SharePoint on-prem.  I want users to do data analysis and discovery on the intranet (SharePoint 2010/2013) on their own.

Recommended tool: PowerView

Use Case 3

I have SharePoint on-prem, and need to provide reports to business users on my intranet  which they will print.  I would like power users to be able to create reports.

Recommended tool: SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS)

Use Case 4

I have both Office 365 and SharePoint on-prem, do not have Power View, cannot use my on-prem data in the cloud, but still need to do some kind of Visualization.

Recommended tool: Javascript code using standard Javascript libraries (D3.js, chart.js)

Use Case 5

I am using Office 365, have my data on-prem and want users to be able to use different devices to do data discovery on the data.  I want the users to do create these “reports”.

Recommended tool: Power BI

Use Case 6

I have on-prem SharePoint, the data is in lists and need to create responsive dashboards that work on many different devices.  I want my users to create and consume these.

Recommended tool: Datazen

Please let me know if you have any questions.


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