Office 365 and SharePoint – Meaningful Human Resources (HR) Insights – Power BI Reports and Dashboards on Employee Lifecycle

In the previous post, we saw Human Resources (HR) import SharePoint list data into Power BI Desktop, and now that groundwork will be used to publish employee lifecycle Power BI Reports and Dashboards to Office 365. The report will consist of three visualizations, and the dashboard will contain two of those. The visualizations included in the report are:

  1. Average Days to Onboard New Employees by Department Name.
  2. Average Days Employed by Department Name for Offboarded Employees.
  3. Count of Recruits by Department Name and Year.

Let’s take a look at the end result and then watch how Human Resources (HR) gets there:

O365 SharePoint data as a Power BI report for HR.

Power BI Donut Chart – Average Days to Onboard by Department

This visualization is designed to allow Human Resources to quickly assess the effectiveness of a department’s onboarding process. Note though, there aren’t necessarily inferences to be made that, for example, “being the fastest to onboard is best”, or “taking the longest means there’s a problem with the process”. Instead, the HR team will look at both averages and outliers, and look to answer questions such as:

  • Might there be a bottleneck in some departments’ onboarding process?
  • Is there a correlation between time to onboard and length of employment?
  • Were there years of high recruitment that may have led to issues with onboarding?

In this way, the donut chart visualization doesn’t stand by itself. Instead it’s considered along with the other 2 visualizations as a complete report.

So, how do they build this Power BI Donut Chart visualization…the first on their report?

Power BI Treemap – Average Days Employed by the No Longer Employed

Power BI Treemaps are a powerful way to visualize total sums and averages, and they leave little room for misinterpretation when correctly built. As is the case for all visualizations in this single report…none are intended to be analyzed or interpreted without taking in the context of the other visualizations.

Here we see how quickly this integral key to analyzing the organization’s Human Resources (HR) employee lifecycle can be brought to life.

Power BI Clustered Column Chart – Count of Recruits by Department and Year

Here, the clustered column chart is used to analyze the count of recruits by department for a given year.

There’s something interesting here to note if you’re following along and watch the next video. Notice that, when “Recruit Year” is selected for the Axis value, it does not have the summation sigma icon like all of the other Year fields. Human Resources needed the actual literal values, and to get that, they needed to turn off any summarizing functions. Disabling summarization is done by selecting the field, navigating to Modeling > Properties in the ribbon, and selecting Default Summarization > Don’t summarize. This step will likely come in handy if you’re building charts with numerical values on the axis, groups, categories, etc.

Power BI disabling summarization and summation.

Alright, so here’s how Human Resources (HR) builds out their count of recruits by department and year using the Power BI Clustered Column Chart:

Power BI Reports and Dashboards

Thus far, everything we’ve seen Human Resources build is on their local Power BI Desktop client application. They need to publish this to Office 365 in an App Workspace so they can eventually deploy it as an App and share with the organization. The publishing step is not included in the video, but once done, we see the report tested, and then pushed to a Power BI Dashboard with a Web view and Phone view:


This is just the start of Power BI as it relates to this business management series. More to come.



Categories: Business, Business Management, Human Resources, Office 365 and O365, Power BI, SharePoint

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