'Take-aways' from Microsoft’s Power Platform workshop

– I recently attended a three-day workshop on the Power Platform - with three other colleagues from cVation. The Power Platform is a no-code platform in which Microsoft is currently making large investments. Three participants from cVation joined to learn a more about how it can be used to create value for our customers.

Patrik Reppien
Software Engineer

On 5 to 7 March, Microsoft hosted a three-day workshop on the Power Platform.

Microsoft is currently making big investments in its Power Platform, a no-code solution for developers to quickly build data-driven business solutions. Three colleagues from cVation joined a workshop hosted by the Microsoft team to learn a little about how it can be used to create value for our customers.

The Power Platform consists of four parts:

  • Power Apps

  • Power Automate

  • Power BI

  • Power Virtual Agents.

Each part is an independent product that can enhance and streamline different parts of a business. Together, the various parts are well-integrated, out-of-the-box, which make it possible to streamline more complex business functions.

Power Apps makes it easy to create a data-driven app without writing a line code. The platform has hundreds of connectors making it easy to integrate with data sources, whether these are SharePoint, Salesforce, a social media site or an Excel sheet in OneDrive. It is also possible to create your own connectors with other data sources.

Power Automate can be used for automating large and small business processes. In the same way as Power Apps, this service can also retrieve data from any data source. The processes can be activated manually, at specified times or in response to events displayed by the data sources, e.g. an element is set up in SharePoint.

Power BI helps the organization to make informed decisions based on empirical data, by creating an overview of and insight into data.

Power Virtual Agents is a tool for building intelligent chatbots, which can be used both internally and externally by an organization.

The workshop also encouraged the use of Common Data Service, Microsoft’s PaaS solution for storing, modelling and managing data. The Common Data Service is based on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Cloud, and is well integrated with the Power Platform.

One of the most impressive parts of the platform is its ability to enable employees who are directly involved in the business processes themselves to maintain and optimize data management, without having a profound technical understanding of the application.

Microsoft recommends that companies who are keen to start using the platform first establish a Center of Excellence, which will be responsible for defining rules and guidelines for the use of the solution across the organization. This will also ensure that all change management processes, which the platform is intended to enable, are kept under control, and that the company’s requirements for governance, compliance and security are maintained.

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