Endorsement in Power BI, Part 1, The Basics

Content Endorsement in Power BI, Part 1, The Basics

As you may already know, Power BI is not a report-authoring tool only. Indeed, it is much more than that. Power BI is an all-around data platform supporting many aspects you’d expect from such a platform. You can ingest the data from various data sources, transform it, model it, visualise and share it with others. Read more about what Power BI is here.

One of the key aspects of users’ experience in Power BI is their ability to collaborate in creating and sharing artifacts, making it an easy-to-use and convenient platform. But the convenience comes with the cost of having a lot of shared artifacts in large organisations raising concerns about the artifact’s quality and trustworthiness. It would be hard, if not impossible, to identify the quality of the artifacts without a mechanism to identify the quality of the artifacts. Endorsement is the answer to this.

In this series of blog posts, I answer the following questions:

But before we start, we need to know what content means in Power BI.

What does Content Mean in Power BI?

Microsoft lately updated the “Content” terminology, which is slightly different from when I wrote this blog. So I replaced content with artifact that is a more generic term. While the term content is not relevant to the topic anymore, I decided to keep this section explaining what content means in Power BI.

When we use the term Content in the context of Power BI, we refer to the artifacts related to visuals in Power BI Service. We currently have the following artifacts in Power BI:

From those artifacts, the Reports, Dashboards and Apps are Contents.

What is Endorsement in Power BI?

After adopting Power BI in an organisation, the number of artifacts the users create and share grows, which can gradually become an issue: the quality of the artifacts. Imagine an organisation with hundreds of reports, datasets, and apps. It would be confusing and rather time-consuming for the users to identify the trusted resources without a proper mechanism. Power BI provides the Endorsement feature to enable organisations to represent the level of the artifacts’ trustworthiness, so the users can confidently use them to gain insights.

There are currently two levels of endorsement available in Power BI Service:

  • Promoted: the artifact that is in good shape and has an acceptable level of trust. The business has used the artifact long enough to prove the provided information and insights are correct and very close to reality. The promoted artifact is identifiable by the Promoted tag. For instance, the following image shows a promoted report:
A promoted report in Power BI Service
A promoted report in Power BI Service
  • Certified: the artifact is highly trusted, containing high-quality information and insights. The artifact has gone through extensive certification processes, including (but not limited to) auditing, quality assurance, security, and privacy compliance. The certified content gets a Certified badge to make it identifiable, as shown in the following image:
A certified dataset in Power BI Service
A certified dataset in Power BI Service

Which Artifacts Support Endorsement?

Currently, we can endorse the following artifacts in Power BI Service:

  • Datasets
  • Dataflows
  • Reports
  • Apps

Unfortunately, the endorsement currently does not support dashboards.

Who Can Endorse the Artifacts?

Depending on the endorsement, different users can endorse the artifacts in Power BI Service.

Who Can Promote the Artifacts?

Anyone with “write” permission on the Workspace containing the artifacts can promote it. Therefore, the users or security groups with one of the Admin, Member, or Contributor roles in the Workspace can promote the artifact.

However, one should not promote the artifact just because he/she can. The organisations usually have an artifact promotion process to follow, but the boundaries around promoting the artifact are often much more relaxed than certifying it.

Who Can Certify the Artifacts?

Certifying the artifact is a massive responsibility. The organisations often have strict certification processes including but not limited to code review, quality assurance, data stewardship, privacy and security compliance, and more. Therefore, only authorised users can certify the artifact, while others can request artifact certification. The Power BI administrators can grant security groups to certify the artifacts. The organisations often have a specific security group created for certification that the Power BI administrators can use to grant the certification within the Power BI Admin Portal. While artifact promotion often has pretty relaxed processes, the organisation tends to have more strict rules and processes for certain content.

The next part of this series explains:

  • How Power BI administrators grant certification rights to security groups.
  • How to endorse the artifacts.

So stay tuned for that.

What do you think? Did you know about the endorsement? Do you see the benefits of such a feature? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.

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