Power BI Desktop – Working in Data Model and Creating Visualizations (part 3/3)

In this article I would be discussing how to work with data model and create visualizations. I would recommend you read through my previous two topics in this series, for better understanding of the examples we are working with here:

Power BI Desktop – Connecting to Data (part 1/3)

Power BI Desktop – Working in Query Editor (part 2/3)

Data Model

So we had a great progress while preparing a clean data in query editor. If you want to load the data into the data model now then click Close and Apply in the Home tab.

Once you close and apply changes, you will see that the interface changes, because now we are in the actual data model. So, we are now in the report view, where we can create our visualizations. You can toggle between report view and the data view. The data view will show you the actual data.

Now we will go to the Data View, and change the Country column. Power BI has a great functionality to show country specific data, but we will have to tell Power BI that the first column is Country and not some plain text.

To do that, select the first column and then on the Modelling tab select Data Category as Country/Region. Did anything change? You will note a new symbol against Country in the Fields area.

Creating Visualizations

Let us create some visualizations right now. For that we need to be in the report view.

To create a visualization, you can go to the Visualization column and select a visualization type by simply clicking it. Let us create a stacked column chart. You can see the style in the design area, which you can move around.

Let us increase the size of the tile and to add data, you can go to the Fields column and then drag the table fields into the corresponding field of the visualization. So for example, drag:

  • GDP into Value area.
  • Year into Axis area.
  • Country to the Legend area.

Now our chart looks better, but we have too much information in the chart. So, we might setup a filter to only see the Top 10 countries by the total GDP. To do this we keep the Visualization in the report area selected and scroll down in the Visualization column. Under the Country area change the filter type to Top N and specify the Show Items as Top 10, and By Value as GDP (drag-drop). Click Apply Filter.

Now you can see that we have only Top 10 countries in our visualizations.

But maybe we have a better way to visualize the data. You can change the current visualization by simply selecting from the different visualization types in the Visualization column. For example, lets choose a World Map type. You can see the visualization change.

We still see the Annual values.

If you want to see only the total values, i.e. sum of all the years included in the data model, then you can go to the fields column and unselect the Year. If we now click on the formatting area and enable Category Labels, then we can also see the names of the Top 10 countries.

This makes the visualization even better.

That is it. We have now finished the three series of articles discussing how to easily work with Power BI Desktop. Of course, there is more to Power BI. Keep following my blogs @Threadpunter and happy Reading.

The SCOR® Model

(Definition) The SCOR® model is a process reference model developed and endorsed by non-profit corporation, the Supply Chain Council (SCC), as the cross-industry standard diagnostic tool for supply chain management.

  • SCOR process model does not apply to all business processes, only to those involved in the supply chain as the chain extends two tiers in both directions from the company at the core.

  • The main focus of the model is on the chain’s management process:
    • Plan
    • Source
    • Make
    • Deliver
    • Return

    These processes, which are not traditional functional areas or departments – exists within the member firms of the chain. All the processes are carried out by the central triad of chain members.

    The members at each end of the chain perform only two processes:

    • The supplier’s supplier handles only delivery and returns.
    • The customer’s customer manages only sourcing and returns.
  • SCOR® Applications:
SCOR (10.0) Apply to following activities: SCOR (10.0) Does not apply to following activities:
All customer interaction from order entry through paid invoice. Sales and marketing (defined as demand generation).
All product transactions (defined as physical materials & services), including equipment, spare parts, bulk product, and software, among others. Research & technology development.
All market interactions from understanding aggregate demand through order fulfillment. Product development.
Some elements of post-delivery customer support (but it does include returns as fundamental process).
  • SCOR does not address the following but assumes that they exist:
    • Training
    • Quality
    • Information Technology
    • Administration (other than SCM administration)
  • The SCOR model assumes that the product has already been designed and tested for production.

Collaborative Planning, Forecasting and Replenishment (CPFR)

  • Collaborative planning, forecasting and replenishment (CPFR®) is a way to integrate the elements of demand management among supply chain partners.
  • CPFR is:
    • A collaborative process whereby supply chain trading partners can jointly plan key supply chain activities from production and delivery of raw materials to production and delivery of final products to end customers. Collaboration encompasses business planning, sales forecasting, and all operations required to replenish raw materials and finished goods.
    • A process philosophy for facilitating collaborative communications.

CPFR Model

The VICS CPFR model is broken into four major activities comprising eight collaboration tasks, with two tasks listed under each of the four activities. The eight collaboration tasks are further associated with 16 enterprise tasks carried out either by the buyer/retailer or seller/manufacturer.

CPFR Collaboration Activities and Tasks

The enterprise tasks function as links between the collaboration tasks and the overall operation of the enterprise. These links serve to eliminate redundancies and discrepancies that occur when the manufacturer and the retailer carry out those tasks in isolation.

Strategy and Planning

  • The purpose of strategy and planning is to establish rules for the relationship, define the mix of products, and develop plans for upcoming events.
  • There are two specific collaboration tasks to be completed within this area:
    • Collaboration arrangement:

      Collaboration arrangement involves setting business goals, defining the scope of collaboration, and assigning roles, responsibilities, checkpoints and escalation procedures.

    • Joint Business Plan:
      A joint business plan identifies significant events such as promotions, inventory policy changes, store openings and closings, and product introductions. Marketing planning is the responsibility of the manufacturer, while the retailer takes care of category management.

Demand and Supply Management

  • In this area, the partners forecast consumer demand at the point-of-sale and determine order and shipment requirements. The model specifies two tasks:
    • Sales Forecasting
      The manufacturer analyzes market data, while the retailer forecasts point-of-sale (POS) numbers.
    • Order planning/forecasting
      The manufacturer conducts demand planning, while the retailer undertakes replenishment planning.


  • This area, which is also known as the order-to-cash cycle, involves placing orders, preparing and delivering shipments, receiving and stocking products at the retail site, recording transactions, and making payments.
  • The model identifies two execution tasks:
    • Order Generation
      The manufacturer does production and supply planning, while the retailer conducts the activities associated with buying.
    • Order Fulfillment
      This involves logistics and distribution management for both manufacturer and retailer.


  • In the analysis phase, the supply chain partners monitor planning and execution activities to identify exceptions.
  • They also aggregate results and calculate key performance metrics, share insights, and adjust plan as part of continuous improvement.
  • Analysis involves the following two tasks:
    • Exception Management
      This involves execution monitoring by the manufacturer and store execution by the retailer.
    • Performance Assessment
      Manufacturer and retailer keep scorecards to access each other’s performance.


  • CPFR is at heart about developing effective business processes to synchronize supply chain operations across enterprise boundaries.
  • The success of CPFR depends upon willingness to work with shared data efficiently in real time.
  • CPFR software solutions include systems that allow enterprise partners to:
    • Share forecasts and historical data.
    • Automate the collaboration arrangement and business plan.
    • Evaluate exceptions.
    • Enable two-way, real-time conversations, revisions and commentary.

CPFR Benefits and Challenges

Instituting CPFR and realizing its benefits may require meeting several predictable challenges:

  • Increased costs
  • Resistance to data sharing
  • Bridging internal functions

When setting up a CPFR relationship, cross-functional teams might bring together marketing and sales, financial product specialist, logistics specialists, and demand planners who would collaborate among themselves and speak with a single voice to the customer.

Influencing Demand

  • Influencing demand describes the activities of product and brand management, marketing, and sales to convince customers to purchase the organizations products and services so that the organizations business objectives are met or exceeded.
  • Another aspect of influencing demand is the requirement for the demand side of the organization to influence the product development and supply sides of the organization to recognize a support actual customer expectation and requirements.
  • One iterative process that can be used to ensure that demand-influencing activities are being continually adapted to current situations is to use a structured process such as the plan, do, check, act model.

Plan, do, check, act model

  • This model is four-step cycle that incorporates performance measurement, feedback, and re-planning into the processes of planning and executing activities.
  • It is a model that can be applied to any process, including the other aspects of the demand management and S&OP integration processes.

Plan phase

  • During the plan phase of the demand-influencing cycle, product/brand management, marketing, and sales perform research and develop detailed strategies and tactics for influencing demand.
  • The plan should include a budget, a schedule, and a list of tasks assigned to specific individuals for accountability.
  • The plan should also set measurable targets indicating the increase in demand that the activities should generate.
  • The plans are reviewed and approved prior to the S&OP meetings and are adjusted as needed during those meetings, resulting in commitments to execute a consensus plan.

Do phase

  • During the do phase, product and brand management, marketing, and sales execute the plans.
  • Product and brand management professionals launch, manage, and retire products.
  • Marketing professionals work to create demand and reinforce the brand value.
  • Salesperson work to acquire new customers and retain and develop existing customers.
  • Sales and marketing professionals may be required to provide the demand manager with periodic data on their results during execution.
  • The marketing and sales managers and the demand manager exercise management and control during this phase by serving as problem solvers and by verifying that the correct activities are occurring.

Check phase

  • During the check phase, the demand manager and/or other demand-side managers review metrics against the plan and document other feedback, such as customer opinions on product pricing, features and customer service levels.
  • A key aspect of this phase is to determine the root cause of any differences between plan and actual results, that is, whether they arise from identifiable internal or external factors.
  • These activities are performed periodically rather than waiting until the processes are complete.
  • Dashboards are common way to track and monitor metrics for demand-influencing activities.

Act phase

  • During the act phase, the demand manager leads the re-planning efforts to respond to variances from the plan and address root cause of the variances.
  • Re-planning may call for increased or decreased investments in various activities depending on what is and is not proving effective.
  • The re-planning process could be part of the lead up to the monthly S&OP process, or it could be performed more frequently if required. However, many marketing efforts take a long time to show measurable results, so a long term focus is typically necessary.

Using this model allows organizations to control their demand-influencing activities to the fullest extent possible.