Dashboards, Workspaces, and Reports
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Power BI has changed the BI landscape forever, enabling BI professionals and regular Excel users alike to work with big data and build insightful dashboards. 

Learn to use this powerful business intelligence solution from the ground up. Navigate the intuitive user interface and explore the ecosystem of data modeling tools. Discover outside-the-box visualizations and broadcast your insights to colleagues in the Power BI Service. This Course gives you a solid foundation to begin your Power BI journey. 

Learning Objectives

On completing this Course, learners will be able to:

  • Identify the primary components of the Power BI interface: reports, data, and model views
  • Import Excel data and build basic visuals
  • Publish a desktop report to the Power BI Service
  • Identify common challenges in Power BI data models, implement smart solutions, and avoid common mistakes

Intended Audience

  • Business professionals whose job requires them to design, build, or deliver business intelligence metrics
  • Anyone preparing to take the Microsoft PL-900 exam


A desire to learn to use Power BI


We have now mentioned reports and dashboards, and even workspaces, but let's take a moment to properly differentiate these important elements of Power BI. A dashboard is something you or a colleague can create in the Power BI service, and then, you can share with others in your organization. A dashboard is a single canvas that contains tiles from one or more reports, and you might be asking, why would this be necessary?

Well, let's say every day we need to share a few important visuals with our director. That visual is made inside of a Power BI file, which exists on my computer, so if I wanted to share it with my director, I would need to email them the Power BI file and tell them how to get to the visual in question, right? The directors I know like things to be a bit easier, which is where dashboards come in handy. We can now publish certain visuals or even entire reports to our director's dashboard, so going forward, our director can just open up the Power BI service and all of their visuals are right in front of them. Plus, since Power BI can create a live connection to the data, the newest data can always be reflected there for the director. And it's even easy for report designers as well. In order to update or add something new, we just go over to the Edit button and choose add More Tiles. We can even add some web content, images or even a video.

Now workspaces are a little different. Workspaces can contain dashboards and they can contain reports and datasets and data flows. Within Power BI, there are two types of workspaces. First is My Workspace. This is the personal workspace for any Power BI customer to work with their own content, and then, you also have access to Workspaces, which is used to collaborate and share content with your colleagues. Workspace members do need a Power BI Pro license, and then, you can add colleagues to workspaces and collaborate on dashboards, reports and datasets together.

Workspaces can also contain apps. You can create, publish and manage apps for your organization all in a workspace. And now we've just introduced a couple of additional terms that we probably also need to differentiate. Power BI Desktop and Power BI Service. What's the difference? Power BI Desktop is an application installed on a computer. It contains the full featured report area where we have been building visuals in this course. It also contains the full feature data querying system, which you can access using the Data tab, and a modeling and relationship engine, which you access using the Modeling tab. And of course, you can publish these reports by pushing them up to a cloud area where other people can view it, which is usually the Power BI Service.

Now let's talk about the Power BI Service. Power BI Service is the cloud service that allows you to take these reports you published and select elements from them to build dashboards to share with your colleagues. You can also share your published reports and dashboards with your Power BI colleagues and collaborate via workspaces. You access the Power BI Service through a browser window. I'll show you just one of the many ways you can access it via and access our workspaces, dashboards and reports.

About the Author

Chelsea Dohemann is a Senior Technical Trainer and Microsoft Certified Master with almost a decade of experience in technology training. She has taught an array of applications from Microsoft products including Office 365 web apps, Microsoft Office Suite, Power BI, VBA for Excel, and SharePoint to Adobe Acrobat Pro and Creative Cloud. Being a persistent learner herself, Chelsea is acutely in-tune with the challenges of learning. She presents her topics in plain language, with real-world examples, reducing complex concepts down to their simple parts.