Inventory accounting analysis

Power BI analytics with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations – Part 2

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management supports embedded Power BI analytical reporting without incurring any additional license cost. Power BI analytical reports are automatically available if the user has access to either Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance app or Supply Chain Management app.

I believe embedded Power BI analytics is one of the most important features of Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management applications, which empowers users to gain access to Power BI analytics without incurring any additional cost. Using embedded Power BI, users can create their own set of reports based on data available in the entity store. Entity store is a new term introduced in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and SCM for storing staging measures and aggregate data within the intermediate database, doing this enables Power BI reporting to be faster and efficient.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management application subscription package provides an additional virtual box for storing entity store data which is refreshed as per predefined frequency for both Sandbox environment and Production environment.

The following screenshot shows the additional virtual box available as part of subscription for both Sandbox and Production environment.

Microsoft Dynamics Lifecycle Services (LCS) - Environment details - Deployment status
Microsoft Dynamics Lifecycle Services (LCS) – Environment details – Deployment status

This tutorial is the second part and in continuation of the steps provided in part-1 at Configure Power BI integration for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations workspaces. In this article, I will be covering step by step guide on how to configure the entity store auto-refresh parameters to enable Power BI analytical reports to display the most recent set of data.

Setup Entity store refresh

  • System administration >> Setup >> Entity store
  • Select the Entity store e.g. KPI for inventory accounting for Inventory cost accounting related analytical reports.
Power BI - Entity store configuration screenshot
Power BI – Entity store configuration
  1. Automatic refresh enabled: Activate this parameter to automatic refresh the Entity store.
  2. Recurrence: Select how frequently the entity store to be refreshed.
    • Once per day: Refreshes the entity store once per day.
    • Once per week: Refreshes the entity store only once per week.
    • Every hour: If you set Recurrence to Every hour, it will refresh the entity store every hour. This is too frequent hence make sure that it is an utmost necessity.
    • Twice per day: Setting recurrence value to Twice per day will refresh the Entity store twice a day. Again this is too frequent and set only if required.
  3. Refresh: Click the Refresh button to force the manual refresh of the selected entity store.
  4. Refresh logs: Refresh log grid displays refresh logs which contains information like Event time, Event type and Event message. This log helps to troubleshoot entity store refresh issues.
  5. Enforce offline hours: Remember that Entity store refresh is a resource-hungry task which may hamper normal functional response times during the business hours. To facilitate entity store refresh during offline hours (when business transactions are minimal), activate Enforce offline hours parameter.
  6. Start time and End time: Once you activate Enforce offline hours parameter, enter the Start time and the End time in GMT, doing this will make sure that the entity store is refreshed during the specified time.
Entity store – Synchronization offline hours

It is mandatory to refresh the entity store at least once to enable the corresponding Power BI analytical report to display data. Once the entity store is refreshed it should be configured such that the data is refreshed as per the predefined frequency and the Power BI reports show most recent data.

List aggregate measures for Power BI reporting

When I am writing this post there are 50 entity stores available in the standard system. The list of entities is pasted below:

BudgetTSMeasureBudget time series measure
CashFlowTSMeasureCash flow time series aggregate measure
CostInventoryAccountingKPIGoalsKPI for inventory accounting
CostObjectStatementCacheMonthlyMonthly statements for cost objects
CustCollectionsBIMeasurementsV2Credit and collections V2
EntAssetBIAssetMTBFCubeAsset maintenance MTBF
EntAssetBIAssetMTTRCubeAsset maintenance MTTR
EntAssetBICostControlCubeWork order cost control
EntAssetBIMaintenanceRequestCubeAsset maintenance requests
EntAssetBIPlannedWorkOrderCubePlanned work orders
EntAssetMaintenanceCostCubeAsset maintenance cost
FinancialReportingTransactionDataFinancial reporting transaction data
FinancialReportingTransactionDataV2Financial reporting transaction data version 2
FinancialReportingTransactionDataV3Financial reporting transaction data version 3
PayPredMeasureCustomer payment insights measure (preview)
ProductionCubeProduction cube
ProjectAccountingCubeProject accounting cube
PurchaseCubePurchase cube
RetailCubeRetail cube
SafetyStockTSMeasureSafety stock time series aggregate measure
SalesCubeSales cube
VendDlvLeadTimeMeasureSupplier lead time insights measure (preview)
VendInvoiceAutomationBIMeasurementVendor invoice automation measure
VendPaymentBIMeasureV2Vendor payment measure V2
List of Entity stores available in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and SCM

In the upcoming post, we will see the list of Standard Power BI analytical report and will also understand through series of posts about how each report helps us analyzing stuffs. Moreover how we can add new pages to analytical reports and modify existing pages.

Please share your thoughts and suggestions in the comment section.

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