Power BI Graphical Reports

Power BI and Azure DevOps: Reporting “outside the box” to Stakeholders

Microsoft Azure DevOps (ADO) Reporting

With one Power BI report, users have the ability to report against ALL of their Azure DevOps servers and ADO Projects within a single report, and data would be up to date.

Out of the Box Capabilities

For those who need to pull data out of Microsoft Azure DevOps for reporting purposes, there are challenges when attempting to provide that information outside of Azure DevOps.

Typically, if I want to share project reports with my stakeholders, I would provide them a link to share these dynamic dashboards which focus on what they want to see. Project stakeholders may want to see an upcoming production release “bill of health” view, e.g. Burndown chart, Average Velocity, open critical bugs, etc.

However, what if some of your stakeholders don’t have or want access to Azure DevOps? Well, you could take a screen capture of a dashboard, and email your stakeholders that information or…

Power BI to the Rescue

Using both Power BI Desktop, a free license, and cloud Power BI Pro within the Office 365 suite of products, you can create a suite of reports against the Azure DevOps data, and share those reports on a schedule of your choosing. There are also several Analytics / Views that come with Azure DevOps to get you started.

Step 1: Select the Data Source:

Launch Power BI Desktop application found in the Microsoft Marketplace. Select “Get Data” after launching the application. Then a list of data sources is displayed to the user. Select “Online Services” data source group, “Azure DevOps (Beta), then “Connect”.

Power BI Data Source
Power BI Data Source

The user should then be presented with an Azure DevOps login.

ADO Login
ADO Login

Enter your Azure DevOps instance details for connecting to your site. If you are already logged into Azure DevOps in another browser tab, no additional authentication is required. You should now be presented with a list of Analytics / Views that come with ADO “out of the box”.

ADO Analytics Views in Power BI
ADO Analytics Views in Power BI

Just for demonstration purposes, please select the first item on the list, “Bugs – All History by Month”. A preview of the data should be shown on the right side of the panel. Select the “Load” button, which should be enabled if you’ve followed the steps thus far.

On the right side of the screen, there should be a panel called “Fields”. You can select all or some of the columns/fields within the View that was pulled from ADO. As you select the fields, they should populate on the left side of the screen, “Page 1” of the Power BI report. At this point, you may leverage your Power BI prowess to build graphical visualizations of the data you’ve imported.

Power BI Graphical Reports
Power BI Graphical Reports

Save your Power BI report, and then “Publish to Power BI”. The default destination is “My Workspace”, which should be defined with the use of the Power BI Pro, Office 365 app. Save the report and close the Power BI Desktop app. Open the Power BI cloud app from Office 365.

Open the “My Workspace” folder, and look for the “Dataset” and accompanying Power BI “Report” you just created. Click on the “Dataset” with the same name as your report to open it. Select the “Refresh” menu, and the “Schedule Refresh” menu item. Define your schedule to run BEFORE you will push the report via email to your stakeholders.

Subscribe
+ Add new Subscription

Go back to your home screen, select “My workspace”, then select the report you’ve created. Once the report appears, select the “Subscribe” menu. select the menu item “+ Add new Subscription”. Populate the who, what, and when, then select the “Save and Close” button.

Azure DevOps View Creation
Azure DevOps View Creation

That’s it. You could then start to create your own Analytics Views from within Azure DevOps, and then create Power BI reports.

Please note:

“Analytics views are data sets that are exposed to Power BI. You can use views to create reports based on your Azure DevOps data. This feature is in preview. How do I use analytics views?

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