Paul Turley

I love creating BI solutions, wrangling data, writing, blogging & speaking at events that provide leadership & direction for the BI community. With over 25 years in the IT industry, I offer deep BI expertise, leadership & the experience of hundreds of successful projects.

A Success Story Using Auto ML in Power BI Premium

Azure Machine Learning and Power BI are two of the most influential tools out there. I’d like to share a story about how a colleague and I recently completed a project for a public school district in Georgia using these powerful tools.

The purpose of this project was to integrate machine learning and predictive analytics to be able to feed inputs that existed in their data about students such as classes they’d taken, attendance, grades, etc. and use this information to predict the likelihood of high school graduation. The district could then use this to proactively guide students and give them the help they needed.

We used the Auto ML feature in Power BI Premium. My colleague, Brian Custer, oversaw the machine learning model design. Auto ML is a straightforward process in Power BI. All that was needed was to create data using the information we wanted to look at that may have an impact on graduation and then we put this through a wizard in Auto ML. Once we did that, out came a model that was trained and ready to go for prediction.

Machine learning models exist in several different forms and leverage the capabilities that are built into Azure – we have Azure Machine Learning, Python and R, integrations with SQL Server, as well as Auto ML and other features within Power BI.

So, what exactly is Auto ML in Power BI? It’s a wizard driven machine learning interface that works off dataflows. You start off with a dataflow and you must have your training and prediction entities in your dataflow. This is passed to an Auto ML model that you choose and then it automatically trains the model for you and delivers predictions.

This is a very simple pipeline to set up. In our case we simply hooked up to the data that was in Azure Data Lake Gen2 storage and brought it into some SQL tables.

The school district we created this for couldn’t have been happier with the results and they are currently using this machine learning model to help predict the probability of high school graduation and ensure that students in the path of not graduating get the help they need to succeed.

Need further help? Our expert team and solution offerings can help your business with any Azure product or service, including Managed Services offerings. Contact us at 888-8AZURE or  [email protected].

Paul TurleyA Success Story Using Auto ML in Power BI Premium
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Correlating Coronavirus Outbreaks with Business Data Using Power BI

At the time of this post, the world is dealing with a serious health and economic crisis. The COVID-19, Coronavirus, is impacting the lives of people around the world and in turn, it is affecting world markets and industries in many different ways. For example, I am working with a client whose material shipping and supply chain are being are impacted by the breakout and they need to quickly respond by making order changes and logistics choices. Forecasting and planning analysts must make adjustments to help the company prepare for these impactful changes.

Paul TurleyCorrelating Coronavirus Outbreaks with Business Data Using Power BI
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Introducing the Power BI Activity Log API

Are you still using Office 365 Audit Log to track activity in Power BI? Let me tell you about a better way. The new Power BI Activity Log API was released in December 2019 and is in preview. An important part of your Power BI tenant is knowing what’s going on. Activity logging allows you to know things such as:

Paul TurleyIntroducing the Power BI Activity Log API
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Paginated Reports in Power BI

What do you know about implementing paginated reports in Power BI? A recent client wanted to know their options for implementing operational reports, which are optimized for printing, alongside their interactive, self-service Power BI reports. Another client had recently learned about paginated reports within Power BI but was reluctant to use new software in their productions operational reporting.

Paul TurleyPaginated Reports in Power BI
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