I have tested the SharePoint 2013 preview edition’s new Business Intelligence Center. The following are some of my experiences and thoughts while conducting these tests.
At first I created a new SharePoint 2013 Business Intelligence site. It`s look and feel are much more attractive than a SharePoint 2010 BI site. The Home page is more clear and simple to use.
Taking a look at Excel Services and at the data in the new BI site Excel workbook, we see a less cluttered page with clear charts and more useful Excel items with graphics and indicators.
With Excel Services you can sort your data, filter it and refresh data entries at the web-browser without pressing F5. Since it`s a cross-browser service, you can view your data on IE, Mozilla FF, Google Chrome, and Safari and at mobile devices as well. As an example I chose two years on the “Date” scroll-bar and the graphic for “Reclining Lawn Chair Historic Prices” was refreshed automatically.
At the bottom of the Excel workbook`s page you can see the usual Excel work sheets.
At the top of the Excel workbook page, you can see the Microsoft ribbon where it shows the current user login name and the feed icon. By clicking on the feed icon you are able to write a feed to Microsoft. Additionally you can get help or close the Excel workbook by clicking on the “help” or “close” icon.
At the top of the Excel workbook page we can find the new Metro Style Excel Services Ribbon.
If you have a lot of data and need to find a specific item, use Find. Just click the Find button on the Excel ribbon and find required data with just one click.
The Data button is the same as the Data button on the SharePoint 2010 Excel Services ribbon. You can refresh connections or recalculate the Excel workbook.
At the File tab you can see the Metro Style Excel 2013 panel. It’s easy to use, right?
Another useful service of SharePoint 2013 Business Intelligence is PerformancePoint services. The start page of PerformancePoint is more helpful and useful than before. The Run Dashboard Designer is on the start page so you don`t need to search for it on subsequent pages.
Additionally in SharePoint 2013 we can see the PerformancePoint tab on the main SharePoint Ribbon. The Run Dashboard Designer button and Export/Import buttons are there as well. This lets you work faster with your PerformancePoint dashboards.
During my testing, I noticed other useful changes in SharePoint 2013’s Business Intelligence Center. Some of these changes are the result of SharePoint 2013 development and some were from Microsoft’s new SQL 2012. I think you will agree that the new SharePoint 2013 BI capabilities will bring new life to and faster user adoption of Microsoft’s Business Intelligence Center.
Guest Post by Tanya Melnichenko, Level 2 Engineer, PLEXHOSTED LLC