Organisations looking to get the best insights from their data, may find the default dashboard functionality within Dynamics 365 is absolutely fine for their business goals. However if you need to consider secondary or multiple sources of data outside your CRM, or you need deeper insights, you may want to consider a more powerful analytics tool such as Microsoft’s Power BI. Power BI can help, by visualising data to answer critical business questions.

If you’re not sure whether you need the additional reporting capabilities that Power BI offers, check the main differences between Microsoft Dynamics 365 dashboards and Power BI dashboards below.

When considering whether Dynamics 365 dashboards or Power BI dashboards would be a better fit for your organisation, it’s worth understanding some of the basic differences between the two.

Use cases

Microsoft Dynamic 365: Dynamics 365 dashboards are suitable for reflecting day-to-day activities and performance of your teams or individuals. Typical use cases for Dynamics 365 dashboards are to view open opportunities on a selected stage or top performing sales people for example.

Power BI: Power BI dashboards support more complex and context-based scenarios, showing sales, marketing or customer service trends not only within months and years but in real-time as well. For example, a Power BI dashboard can show you your social media trends or aggregate the social media sentiment about your organisation. Power BI can predict future trends based on the current datasets.


Microsoft Dynamic 365: User dashboards in Dynamics 365 can include up to 6 visuals per dashboard and present your data in a variety of ways, like a funnel, a bar graph, a pie graph, and a stack bar graph.

Power BI: Users can have as many charts (or visuals) as necessary. Among the most popular types of visuals available are area charts, bar and column charts, combo charts, funnel charts, doughnut charts, and others.

Sharing capability

Microsoft Dynamic 365: Dynamics 365 dashboards can be shared with other Dynamics CRM users only.

Power BI: It’s easy to share dashboards and other meaningful insights with team members across your organization.

Types of data

Microsoft Dynamic 365: Only data from Dynamics 365 can be included in your dashboards.

Power BI: Connects to almost any data source (including Dynamics 365) and consolidates data in one place. Your dashboard can reflect all your linked data sources.

Manipulating the data

Microsoft Dynamic 365: Your dashboard will reflect the filters selected within your CRM report for that dataset.

Power BI: Lets you easily filter and change data within the dashboard environment to view the exact scenario you want to see, without having to access the raw data.

In conclusion:

Your Dynamics 365 Dashboard gives you easy-to-read charts and graphs that help you monitor your KPIs.

Microsoft’s Power BI allows you to create your own interactive dashboards that include advanced business intelligence reporting capabilities and trends over time

You can think of Power BI dashboards as the more advanced, more powerful version of Dynamics 365 dashboards. They can do more, but they are also a little more complicated. We recommend using Power BI dashboards for communicating key management information.

Anything else to know?

Power BI and Dynamics 365 can be easily integrated with each other. Some knowledge of Power BI will be required to set up initial dashboards, which can later be copied and adapted by your team.

At Active we can help by building a set of reports based on your requirements. We will configure a handful of Power BI dashboards to fit the core needs of your organisation, and these can easily be configured to fit your objectives.

Book a consultation

If you’re still in two minds which dashboard is right for you, we suggest thinking about the complexity of the data analysis you need. For regular analytics tasks not requiring much data slicing-and-dicing, Dynamics 365 reporting capabilities will suffice. And if you need deeper insights entailing examining your data from every viewpoint, you should consider leveraging the capabilities of Power BI. If you need help with assessing the feasibility of both options for your organisation or implementing either of them, you are welcome to contact our team.

Active is proud to be a Microsoft Dynamics 365 Partner and Cloud Solution Provider.