Display Power BI Visualizations in Dynamics 365 Dashboards

Power BI is as powerful as it sounds, and we now have the option to incorporate Power BI charts and data visualizations in Microsoft Dynamics 365 (and Dynamics CRM). Here’s how to do it.

A few things to note before you start creating a Dashboard:

  • Users must have access to Power BI, and at least one Power BI Dashboard to reference. The visualizations come from a Dashboard in Power BI.
  • This applies to Dynamics CRM 2016 and Dynamics 365.
  • Visualizations can only be added to Personal Dashboards (which can in turn be shared with other users).
  • Power BI data is not real-time, so this is based on the refresh you do manually in Power BI, or the scheduled refreshes.
  • Security doesn’t apply to Power BI as it does to Dynamics 365, so Business Unit or Entity privileges that might be locked down in Dynamics 365 will not translate here. This is important to know. A great workaround is creating different Dashboards in both Power BI and Dynamics 365 then sharing them individually.

Turning this function on is simple.

Navigate to Settings > Administration > System Settings > the Reporting tab, then check “Allow Power BI tile embedding”

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To create a Dashboard with Power BI:

  1. In the Dashboard area, create a new Dashboard. (Once you have enabled the setting above, the option for a Power BI Dashboard will show).

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2. A window will open with the list of your available Power BI Dashboards, simply select the appropriate one (also note you will have an option to enable this for mobile). Additionally, a nice preview of the dashboard will show in the background to help you confirm which you’re working from.

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3. This will pull in the entire Dashboard seamlessly, and from here users have the option to “Open in Power BI” in the ribbon.

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Another option for utilizing Power BI in Dynamics CRM is to create a standard Dynamics 365 Dashboard rather than a Power BI Dashboard. Then add just specific tiles from Power BI.

  1. After making the initial Settings changes, when adding any component to a Dashboard. Power BI icon will show up as an option.

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2. Select the Dashboard you want to pull one tile from, then the Tile itself.

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When working with these tiles in Dynamics 365, you can hover to see details as you’d like, or navigate right to Power BI using the icon in the component area. We love this option for people who work often in both places as a quick navigation shortcut in addition to the robust options Power BI allows us to view data in compared to the standard CRM chart and list types.  For people managing data and going to the effort of creating Power BI reports and Dashboards, it’s great to expose these in other areas.

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For help connecting your Dynamics 365 or Dynamics CRM data to Power BI, or creating Power BI charts and Dashboards beyond the pre-built samples, contact us!

By Erin Karatkiewicz, Applications Consultant, with xRM³, a Microsoft Partner specializing in Dynamics 365 consulting, implementation, integration, and administrative services. Based in San Diego County Southern California. For help with Dynamics 365, contact us