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Coming Soon to Power BI: Common Data Service (CDS) for Analytics

22 March 2018


In light of International Data Corporation’s (IDC’s) recent global data creation estimate, that there will be more than 160 zettabytes of data by 2025, Microsoft has estimated that greater than 60% of this data will be created by businesses.  With this as background, a common data service is going to be vital.

Therefore, Microsoft has announced a new capability coming to Power BI soon: the Common Data Service (CDS) for Analytics.  CDS for Analytics capability will reduce the complexity of driving business analytics across data from business apps and other sources:

  • Common data schema.  Built on the common data model, CDS for Analytics will expand Power BI with the introduction of an extensible business application schema on which organisations can integrate data from multiple sources.  Pre-built connectors for common data sources, including Dynamics 365, Salesforce and others from Power BI’s extensive catalogue, will be available to help organisations access data from Microsoft and third parties.  But that’s not all – you’ll also be able to add your own data

  • Accelerated access to insights.  Equally, once the data is aggregated, the next step is transforming it into relevant insights and making those insights immediately available to help users take intelligent action.  In addition to the data being accessible for self-service analytics in Power BI, customers will have the opportunity to purchase apps from Microsoft and our partners built on Power BI with the new CDS for Analytics capability:

    • Microsoft’s first-party Power BI Insights apps will deliver out-of-the-box insights tailored to specific line of business scenarios, across marketing, sales, service, finance, operations and talent.  For example, Power BI for Sales Insights might address how to maximise sales productivity by providing insights into which opportunities are at risk and where salespeople could be spending their time more efficiently
    • Partners can also build Power BI apps to deliver added value to their customers.  Insurance and investment solution provider CUNA Mutual Group is developing a new offering for the credit union industry built on Power BI and Dynamics 365.  AdvantEdge Analytics will extend Microsoft’s common data model, leveraging standard connectors to populate the data model from the line of business apps used by credit unions.  AdvantEdge will expose deep insights through Power BI, and users will have the ability to translate these insights into action with Dynamics 365.  Partners and AdvantEdge customers will also be able to extend the model even further, accelerating the possibilities for digital transformation for credit unions.

  • Customise and extend your apps.  Power BI apps built with the new capability will also be extensible to meet unique business requirements.  Regardless of skillset – from self-service customisations in low code / no code experiences in Power BI, to the depth of the Azure platform with data services like Azure Machine Learning and Azure Databricks – users will be able to custom tailor reports or build new ones uniquely relevant to their needs.

Watch this space...

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