Power Apps, Power Automate

What is the Power Platform?

Posted by Heidi Neuhauser
The Power Platform

Microsoft’s Power Platform is made of four components:

  • Power Apps: Build apps to help users at your organization.
  • Power Automate: Automate manual tasks and processes.
  • Power BI: Visualize your data, allowing for excellent business analytics.
  • Power Virtual Agents: Build bots to drive conversations.

In this blog, we’ll give you a high-level introduction to the Power Platform. The platform gives you the ability to build apps, automation, chat bots and more using low-code and no-code tools. It’s highly accessible to builders and makers of all technical comfort levels.

Power Apps

You can build apps for your organization that users can interact with. They can use Dataverse as a database (model-driven apps), or they can use anything (canvas apps). You can also launch customer-facing and internal portals via Power Apps. Most of the configuration and setup can be done using no-code or low-code, and leverages an easy-to-use, drag-and-drop interface.

PowerApps demo: building a model-driven app in Power Apps.

Power Automate

Power Automate is an amazing tool where you can automate manual tasks. Using connectors (wrappers around APIs), you can easily, simply connect to multiple systems. No-code can get you started with some great automations, but you will likely need a developer to help you with more complicated flows, Odata queries and writing expressions. Check out the 602 currently available Microsoft-certified connectors to extend your flows here!

Sample flow built in Power Automate to automate moving a file from a form to SharePoint.

Check out the full step-by-step on how to build the above flow here.

Power BI

Power BI is a powerful, beautiful dashboarding tool that culls together multiple data sources. Raw data sources can include:

  • Excel
  • Dataverse
  • SQL Server
  • TXT or CSV
  • Odata Feed
  • Power BI Datasets & dataflows

It allows for phenomenal drill-down analytics to analyze data and spot trends to make great business decisions.

Power BI Demo: Building a dashboard in the Power BI Desktop.

Power Virtual Agents

Use Power Virtual Agents to build chatbots using no-code! You have the ability to build a bot using one of several different languages. Beware: once you select a language, you will be unable to change it. Build topics, add conditional logic and more to let users have conversations and take action with your bots. Integrates well with Power Automate to automate tasks based on conversations.

Power Virtual Agents: Test bot.

Ready to Get Started or Learn More?

I’m happy to help you get started! Feel free to email me at heidi@reenhanced.com. At Reenhanced, we’ve helped many companies embrace or expand their presence in the Power Platform.

There are excellent resources for you to get started learning about the Power Platform on your own. Check out the links below, and/or leave a comment any feedback/questions you may have.

Microsoft Learn:

Community & Shameless Self-Promotion Resources πŸ™‚

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