SharePoint Business Intelligence for the Common Person


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Everyone knows that BI (business intelligence) is going to help get you answers that you wouldn't otherwise have at your fingertips, but not a lot of people know how to get those answers, let alone how easy it can really be (with SharePoint). In this session, we'll go over some of the simple ways of giving users (and yourself) what they deserve - the information they need, accurately, and timely.

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  • SharePoint Business Intelligence for the Common Person

    1. 1. SharePoint BI for the Common Person By Colin Phillips :: SharePoint MVP :: itgroove
    2. 2. Business Intelligence 101 Every business, big or small, can benefit from business intelligence - Key Performance Indicators - Dashboards - Charts - Many (many) more possibilities
    3. 3. The Game of BI Buzzwords Big Data Analysis Sparklines Source of Truth Metrics Aggregation … The list goes on, and on, and on Did Someone say BIG Data?
    4. 4. Cutting Through the Crap and Getting Down to Meaning The keys to building a good (and useful) business Accuracy: These have to be right, or people may miss out on earned vacation (or worse, get too much) intelligence thingy [insert buzzword here] - Purpose: Why is this necessary? - Relevance: Bring to the surface relevant info - Vision: A vision of what “it” may look like (if it Purpose: To Help Wendy Find What She Needs actually has a visualization) - Accuracy: The details have to be right - Relevant Info (And sometimes have a little fun) Fun Vision: This could’ve been imagined on a napkin
    5. 5. Tools of the Trade (SharePoint Wise) Things differ quite a bit when comparing 2010 and 2013 The MS Answer to BI in 2010: The MS Answer to BI in 2013: • Performance Point • Excel / Excel Services • (Ad hoc) KPI’s • PowerPivot • Visio Services • PowerView • SQL Server Reporting Services • Excel / Excel Services • PowerPivot (Later add-on) • PowerView (quite limited and later add-on) The rest still “exist” in 2013, but are no longer in the spotlight
    6. 6. The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly 2010 to 2013 What you spent all your time on in 2010 is now mostly deprecated (or lacking) in 2013 Good: - PowerPivot is AMAAAAZING!!! Bad: - You have to learn something new (all over again) Ugly: - Conditional formatting was easy in 2010, now only really something a programmer can handle in 2013 (though it’s power has certainly vastly improved)
    7. 7. Demo #1 – BI Using Only Your Mouse Goal: Creating business intelligence about a SharePoint list without ever using your keyboard Ingredients: • SharePoint List Data (in 2013) • Excel (2013) • PowerPivot • A Pointing Device (Mouse) • Halloween data collected about all costumes worn by my kids since first born (2005).
    8. 8. About Demo #1 Because that example is Ad-hoc (using export to Excel), it works in both onpremises installations, and in the cloud (Office 365).
    9. 9. Demo #2 – This time, “To The Cloud!” Part I We’re going to do a similar analysis as in the first Demo, but this time we’re going to get the information from a cloud data source Part II Combine the data from Demo #1 and Demo #2 together
    10. 10. From Ad-hoc Reporting to Dashboards Step 1: Ad-hoc Reporting Step 2: Dashboards Step 3: Profit?
    11. 11. There Are No Rules When Building A Dashboard • Make a dashboard what you want it to be • Dashboards should serve the end-user, not the author • If you don’t like what you’re given (and have the ability/permissions) change your dashboard to be more useful
    12. 12. Ok, There Are Rules When Building A Dashboard • If this is a “state of the union” dashboard, your dashboard should be quiet unless something needs addressing  Include KPI’s that target specifically what you care about • Simplicity over quantity – if there’s too much going on, people will get lost, or worse, bored • Know what keeps your executives up at night • List views are your friend
    13. 13. Dashboards As a Central Focus • To make dashboards the most successful, direct users to them constantly • Make them your users’ browser homepage • If they’re everywhere, people can’t miss them • If they have the information people need, people will be inclined to use them • Don’t be afraid to adjust things along the way and make improvements Above: Example trend of a static dashboard that you have to go out of your way to find
    14. 14. The Careful Curve of Dashboard Complexity Too Much Information Just Right Too Little Information No Information At the end of the day, Too much is better than too little – but way too much is just wrong. Information Overload
    15. 15. Taken from “the head cheese” at itgroove The following slides are taken from our 2013 dashboard strategy… (Circa January 2013)
    16. 16. What do we need to manage?  Ourselves (Corporate)  Our Customers (Client Manager)  Myself (Individual)
    17. 17. What our dashboards need to tell us Customer Service  What is past due?  What is expiring this week?  What are our risks?  What is overdue for me?  What is on today and tomorrow?  What is on for me today and tomorrow?  What is on this week?  What is on for me this week?  What is on this month?  What is on for me this month?  What changes are coming to customer  What Risks do I own? systems?  What customers do I own Responsibility for? Business & Billing  Client Monthly Hours  Future KPI’s Our Dashboards are about surfacing relevant data, and mitigating risk. Time Entries Today  Think “Outlook Style” Key Message: Have a strategy
    18. 18. Client Manager Dashboards Client Manager Customer Service Business & Billing New! Consultant Dashboard [Me] GM View Everywhere you go in our portal, you’re surrounded by dashboards. Key Message: Make them a central focus, and people won’t even realize they’re gaining the benefit
    19. 19. Let’s Build a Dashboard! Here’s what we’re going to make: - Get data from a SharePoint list - Build some list views - We’ll use several (pre-built) Excel services solutions (for brevity) - Combined together in a web-part page in SharePoint Voila! Dashboard
    20. 20. Dashboards – Gone Wild
    21. 21. Simple Dashboard Colouring Guidelines - Proper use of Colour - Use colour only on outliers (icons are optional) - Don’t cloud the design with colour We all know green is good - Think about what it will look like when printed No matter how much you try to avoid it, someone will always want to do this
    22. 22. Dashboards I Love
    23. 23. So what did we cover? - How to pull information from SharePoint lists (both on premises and cloud) and do ad-hoc reporting - How to combine data from more than 1 source (on premises and cloud) into an ad-hoc report - Use dashboards!!! - Have a plan for your dashboard strategy - - Making dashboards a central focus = Good! How to build a simple dashboard with SharePoint list views and Excel And kids in cute Halloween costumes are adorable
    24. 24. Questions? Contact Info Colin Phillips blog: