Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Power BI are a brilliant match. While CRM allows you to store and centralise your data, Power BI lets you easily make sense of this data – and then act upon it. We love Power BI because it’s straightforward to use, creates beautiful visual dashboards and gives you great insights into your business easily.
You can start using the free version of Power BI by going to the Power BI website and if you start finding you need more functionality then you can upgrade to Power BI Pro.
Connect Power BI and Microsoft Dynamics CRM
Connecting your CRM instance with Power BI is simple to do and only take a few minutes – if you haven’t done it yet then we urge you to! Through the simple ‘service pack’ within Power BI you can connect your systems in minute and then view custom dashboards and reports within Power BI. You can follow our simple step-by-step guide to do this here.
Embed Power BI Tiles in CRM
Viewing these insights in Power BI is great but the Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2016 Spring Wave update has improved this further by allowing Power BI tiles to be directly embedded into CRM. This now allows you to place any Power BI tile into your own custom dashboards and this can include different tiles from different datasets. For example, one tile could have website statistics from Google Analytics, another could show ClickDimensions form submissions – it’s very flexible so you can mix and match your own dashboard tiles.
Here's how you do it:
Prerequisites: Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2016 (Spring Wave update installed – for now this will only apply to Online customers) and Power BI
First, you need to allow the ability to embed tiles. To do this a CRM Admin must go to: Settings> Administration > System Settings.
Click on the ‘Reporting’ tab and navigate to the bottom where it says ‘Allow Power BI tile embedding’ – select Yes if it isn’t already.
Now you can create your own custom dashboard. To do this, go to a dashboard page (in Marketing, Sales or Service – whichever is most relevant to you or the Power BI data).
At the top, click ‘New’.
Select the dashboard layout you would like.
Now you can add your tiles – click on the Power BI icon on the tile.
Now select the data you would like to see. You will be able to see all the data sources you have in Power BI and can then choose which dashboard to show.
Once finished, click Save. Then click Close.
You can now view your Power BI dashboard by clicking your dashboard drop-down and choosing the right dashboard under ‘My Dashboards’.
You can also click into dashboard elements to go into Power BI directly. Voila!