Close this search box.

Power BI Integration with external data sources, Dynamics 365 CRM, ERP & HRMS

The Power BI integration process is known to integrate with the existing business environment of an organization. It helps create and share visually captivating and interactive reports, dashboards, and datasets.

You can categorize the advantages of Power BI Data Integration as follows-

  1. Personalized Dashboards: The Microsoft BI setup provides for the creation of rich interactive dashboards and interactive visualization. Moreover, you can consider this as one of the most important features of this system. Moreover, you can customize these dashboards to suit the needs of the user organization.
  2. Secure Report Publication: Through the process of integrating Power BI with the current business environment, you can create reports out of the larger datasets. Also, this can be shared and published securely among the organization.
  3. No speed or memory constraints: The Power BI Embedded service removes all the speed and memory constraints faced by the existing business environment.
  4. No need for technical support required: The on-premises servers can carry out the usual inquiry. Beside that, it also analysis function through the Power BI integration method.

What are different data sources available in Microsoft Power BI:

The Power BI Service system supports a wide range of data sources. When the Get Data icon is clicked on the desktop, the system displays all the available data connections. 

You can categorize these data sources of the Power BI system into the following:-

  1. Flat files
  2. SQL Database
  3. OData feed
  4. Blank Query
  5. Azure Cloud Platform
  6. Online Services and
  7. Other data sources like Hadoop, Exchange or Active Directory.

The above mentioned, are the kinds of data sources from which you can import data into the systems. Later, you can analyze this data for creating real-time Power BI dashboards

Performing functions with external data sources :

You can do Power BI integration with several data sources around the world. This is one of the basic advantages it provides its users. But, to use the data derived from external sources, there is only one underlying criterion. However, the data received from the sources should be in a format that you can display and use in the Power BI System. 

Moreover, with this consumable format of data, all the functions of the system, namely, creating and sharing dashboards, reports, Q&A questions, Power BI report builder and answers, can all be performed. On the one hand, some data sources have their data formatted according to the Microsoft BI system, while in the case of data from other sources has to be formatted. 

The term data source essentially implies the source from where you can derive the data of a dataset. While the data source cannot be directly connected to the Power BI system, but, the derived data can be formatted and loaded into the system. This formatted information can thus be used to perform all the analytical functions.

What is Data Refreshing rate in Power BI:

Data Refresh rate in Power BI

To enable successful data analysis through the Power BI system, the data stored in the dashboards and reports need to be recent. You can ensure this through the process of data refresh performed after successful Microsoft Power BI integration.  

Besides, the process of data refresh consists of several phases depending upon the organization’s datasets’ storage models. 

The Power BI refresh operation can consist of several kinds of refreshes, Also, you can categorize this data as follow:

  • Data refresh
  • One drive refresh
  • Query cache refresh
  • Tile refresh and
  • Refresh of visualizations in reports.

For a user organization, the Power BI refreshing patterns imply the import of data from the source into the organization’s inbuilt datasets. Accordingly, You can carry out this refresh either according to the refresh schedule or based on demand. 

Through the Microsoft BI system, the user organization can perform refreshes for multiple datasets in a day. Specially, in a situation where the underlying data changes frequently. In this context, it is important to note that if a specific dataset of the organization is working on premium capacity, an employee can schedule up to 48 refreshes in the dataset settings. 

Other than this, generally, the Power BI integration system limits the datasets on shared capacity. You can refresh up to a maximum of eight times a day.

How to Integrate Power BI and Data Warehouse:

In the contemporary business environment, organizations are increasingly concentrating on combining data. You derive this data from cloud applications with the internal datasets of the organization to gain larger and better insights into the business environment. Now, to analyze data from various sources, you need a data warehouse. It performs the function of consolidating all information from external data sources. Major organizations of the world use cloud data warehouses for this purpose. 

A company can extract data from various sources stored in the SAAS applications and database. You can further load this data it into its warehouse. When this data is available to the analysts, they can convert visualizations into reports. You can create various kinds of reports like the data lineage reports in the Power BI.

You can accomplish this process of Power BI integration with the data warehouse of the premises server through the following process:

  1. Enter the App source page of Intune Compliance. This is an application of the Power BI system.
  2. Choose the Get It Now button and subsequently choose Continue.
  3. When asked to install the Power BI app, install.
  4. After installation, select the Intune Compliance App tile.
  5. Select the Connect button. The Connect to Intune Compliance dialogue is visible.
  6. Select the Sign button.
  7. lastly, Sign in using the user account which has access to the Intune Compliance app to view the tenant data.

EPCGroup has been providing Microsoft BI expertise in big data industry. We have over 75+ Power BI Office 365 inhouse experts. We deliver best data analytics service and build custom business intelligence solutions.

EPC Group Microsoft Gold Partners

How to access the ERP data through Power BI:

One of the basic advantages of using the Power BI system is the easy access to ERP Data. The term ERP is the abbreviation for Enterprise Resource Planning data. Through Microsoft’s BI system, you can make this data accessible within the organization. Later, which will subsequently increase the data analysis capacity of the organization. 

You can divide the procedure of making ERP data accessible to the employees of the organization through Power BI into the following categories-

  1. Direct Query Mode: Microsoft BI system has an array of connectors. They can be used to set up this direct query mode for accessing the enterprise data. However, these Power BI connectors can either be modified or used as is to access the organizational data. Some examples of these connectors include Oracle, IBM, Dynamics NAV, and others.
  2. Import Mode: In the import mode, the connectors of the system are modified through several incremental transformations in the system. The import mode provides for a preview function of dataset certification. It will further enables the user organization to engage with the datasets prevailing in the system easily.
  3. Creating a separate semantic layer: In the contemporary business environment, the larger organizations tend to opt for the creation of a separate semantic layer to access the ERP data. These companies use more sophisticated tools like Azure Analysis Services. It creates more complex models for breaking down and analyzing the enterprise data.

How to integrate Microsoft Dynamics 365 data and Power BI:

You can complete the Power BI integration process of connecting Microsoft Dynamics 365 with Microsoft BI through the following process:

  • Firstly, go to the Power BI Desktop menu and select Get Data on Home Tab. The Get Data window is displayed.
  • Select Online Navigation Services
  • Click on the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central from the list.
  • Select the yellow connect button. A dialogue box appears stating the user to sign in to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central.
  • Select the sign-in button.
  • Type the same account details which are used to sign in and run Dynamics 365.
  • lastly, click on the yellow Connect button. A window for navigation appears. The user organization is now connected to the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central.

Microsoft BI and HRMS Analytics:

Microsoft HRMS

The term HRMS stands for the Human Resource analytics platform created by Microsoft. This is a dashboard provided by the Power BI system. Moreover, it gives the user organization a focused view of the human resource in the organization. Subsequently, company can later utilize this information in strengthening its footing in the business arena. 

This derivation of information related to human resources is based on certain factors, namely, the wearing rate of the organization, degree of employee satisfaction, rate of hirings and the rate of exit of employees.

What is Real-time data analysis in Power BI:

Power BI is an analytics system that works in real-time, providing insights into the current changing business trends. The system provides two methods that aid in achieving real-time analysis. Furthermore, these can be classified in the following manner:-

  • Automated page refresh– The automated page refresh feature of Power BI provides the user organization access to the changing business patterns every day. later, after enabling proper settings in the Power BI system, the data can be refresh daily.
  • Streaming data– This feature is present from 2016. Streaming datasets enables the company to create a dataset. Furthermore, you can stream this easily and make it accessible to the other employees of the organization. But, you have to note that the data in the streaming data sets cannot be customized widely as the Power BI Desktop.


Thus, through the service integration window created by Power BI, organizations can benefit by creating term datasets in an integrated setup with the existing organizational system. This, in turn, can aid companies to perform analytical functions efficiently.

Errin OConnor

Errin OConnor

With over 25 years of experience in Information Technology and Management Consulting, Errin O’Connor has led hundreds of large-scale enterprise implementations from Business Intelligence, Power BI, Office 365, SharePoint, Exchange, IT Security, Azure and Hybrid Cloud efforts for over 165 Fortune 500 companies.

Let's Get to Work Together!

Talk to our Microsoft Gold Certified Consultants