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Generate Smart Reports with Power BI Copilot: Here’s How to Use It

Having the right tools makes all the difference in this data-driven world. Power BI, Microsoft's business analytics service, has long been a tool for businesses to make their data meaningful.

Generate Smart Reports with Power BI Copilot: Here’s How to Use It

Copilot, a new addition to the Power BI family, is expanding its capabilities further making data analysis an easy and smart process. In this blog post, we'll delve into what Power BI Copilot is all about, explore its key features, and how to use it effectively.

What is Power BI Copilot?

Microsoft has launched a next-generation AI tool for the Power BI platform users to help them make the most of their data. Its ‘Copilot’ tool is a large language model that can analyze, create, and answer data-related queries in natural language.

Copilot in Power BI has been live since December 2023 under its Microsoft Fabric solution for enterprises. It is also available in the Power BI premium version.

What Copilot Can Do for Power BI Users?

1. Creates Summaries of Semantic Models

Generating a meaningful report requires better data understanding and identification of all the important insights. With Copilot, it is just a work of minutes as it can summarize and explain the entire data in your language. It even helps you identify the important insights that you might overlook.

2. Generates Summaries Without Edit Permission

Power BI offers role-based permission to access the reports. Users with no permission to edit the report can even gain a better understanding by asking questions to Copilot.

It can even answer the questions related to charts and graphs in the reports. It even tells you exactly where in the report the answer comes from, making it super easy to understand.

3. Gives Suggestions for New Report

Besides summarizing the report, Copilot also provides suggestions for generating a new report. It looks at your data and comes up with ideas for what to include in your report. These ideas are like different report sections, each focusing on a specific aspect of your data. Choose which sections (pages) you want in the report.

For each section Copilot picks, it can even suggest charts or graphs helpful in data visualization. Once you've chosen the sections you like, Copilot builds that part of your report for you,

4. Write a DAX Query

Whether you want to create formulas or filter data based on specific criteria, it's easy with Copilot. You don’t even have to write a DAX query. This generative AI tool can do that for you. Simply tell what type of query you want to write, and it will generate.

The best part is you don’t have to copy-paste the query to check whether it's working or not. Select ‘Run’ and the results will generate automatically.

Also Read: Tableau or Power BI? Which is the Ultimate Data Visualization Tool

How to Use Copilot in Power BI?

To start using Copilot, you must have the latest version of Power BI Desktop. There are also a few things you need to make sure of using this tool.

  1. Copilot mode should be enabled at the tenant level.
  2. Fabric should be available in your region.
  3. You should not be using trial SKUs as Copilot doesn’t support the trial version.
  4. If you are a free user, ensure the workspace is assigned and Copilot is enabled.

If all these settings are done, you are ready to use Copilot on the Power BI desktop. Simply click on the Copilot icon or use the designated keyboard shortcut to activate it. Once activated, Copilot will be ready to assist you with your data analysis tasks.

Is There Any Limitations?

Yes, the tool has some limitations:

  • Resizing the copilot pane is not possible as in data or visualization pane.
  • Since it's AI, results may not be 100% accurate. So, double-check the response before using it.
  • One of the biggest limitations of Copilot is it cannot modify the visuals.
  • It cannot use filters or slicers specified in the prompt.
  • It cannot understand the complex intent of the prompt.

Even though Copilot is still under development, it's already a powerful tool for Power BI users. It can help you with all sorts of things, like making sense of complicated reports. It also helps you explore your data in ways that you might not have thought of before. Overall, Copilot makes data analysis easier and helps you get more insights from your information.

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