When it comes to reporting, many landlords have data in numerous places, in different databases and systems, or an array of spreadsheets.

We know that automation and centralisation of data can be a protracted journey which requires support and buy in from already stretched IT departments, trying to balance many priorities.  A significant amount of time is needed to manually extract data from multiple places, manipulate and cleanse it to prepare for any kind of business reporting, with the output being pasted into a Word document, PDF or sometimes – an email!

For a long time, many business reports were qualitative with the occasional chart pasted in from Excel, or in a tabular format using tools such as Business Objects or SSRS, proving difficult to garner any kind of insight from, or to understand why things were happening.

We have seen a progressive increase in demand for enhanced analytics within the sector using advanced BI tools such as Microsoft Power BI.  Landlords are looking for better ways to visualise their data across teams to support decision making and provide insight.  Many organisations in the sector have started to or are thinking about using Power BI as their reporting tool.  Well-designed dashboards allow organisations to track performance effectively, monitor trends and highlight areas of focus for further analysis.  Power BI is a proven tool and can help create a data-driven culture across your organisation by offering everyone access to business intelligence and create deeper, more helpful insights.

Power BI can take data from a huge range of data sources and spreadsheets, transform the data, cleanse it automatically and produce visually appealing dashboards and reports.  It is an effective tool for senior management to monitor business plan KPI’s and can include drill down functionality to help operational teams manage their day-to-day workloads.  I’ve worked with numerous organisations who have pockets of data focussed individuals who have experimented with Power BI, and produced fantastic dashboards, shifting the way people think about how they use data more proactively to change how they operate.

Other landlords are well on their way with more advanced reporting, utilising predictive capabilities in Power BI to understand what the future trajectory looks like, enabling them to plan effectively to mitigate any strain on resource.  Automated connections to Data Warehouses, taking in data from multiple business systems and providing a global view of organisation data, with certified datasets, robust data governance processes and devolved reporting with business departments have transformed the end user reporting experience.

While Power BI is very intuitive, we know it can be a challenge to implement a new piece of software and apply design principles to go from data to insights and insights to action.  As the leading data and insight company for the UK housing sector, Housemark is well-placed to help you implement Power BI in your organisation, whether it’s how to get started with Power BI, a proof of value exercise, data visualisation concepts or how to get buy in, we’ll use our technical expertise, along with our extensive housing sector knowledge to provide support and guidance if you are:

  • Looking to implement Power BI for the first time but not sure where to start
  • Seeking assurance that reports and dashboards are being designed with best practice design principles
  • Review an existing Power BI dashboard for improvement
  • Aligning reporting products to business objectives
  • Power BI training courses  (beginner, intermediate, advanced courses available) or bespoke training tailored for your organisation

If you’d like to learn more about Power BI in Social Housing and find out how Housemark can help, please drop me an email at daz.chauhan@housemark.co.uk