Personalize Visuals (preview) feature was released with the April 2020 release of Microsoft Power BI. In this blog post, I will be briefing you through the personalize visuals feature along with a stepwise guide to implement personalize visuals in your Power BI reports.
Purpose of Personalize Visuals
Power BI end users can have different requirements when it comes to reports. Earlier these requirements were catered by providing edit permissions for the end users or by the end users taking a copy of the report maintained as a separate version. With personalize visuals, the Power BI end users are provided the ability to edit the Power BI reports as per their specific requirements without edit permissions or without having versions of the existing reports.
Stepwise Guide to Personalize Visuals
For demonstration purposes, I created a simple Sales report in Power BI, so that it would be much easier to understand the process involved in using the personalize visuals feature.
The data used for this report can be found here:
Note: Dimensional modeling concepts are not followed when creating the report since it is focused on demonstrating the ‘personalize visuals’ feature only.
Enabling Personalize Visuals Feature
Firstly, it is necessary to enable personalize visuals as a preview feature in Power BI Desktop. Open Power BI Desktop and navigate to Options and Settings > Options > Preview Features. The user will be directed into the window shown below.
Tick on the checkbox, ‘personalize visuals’ shown below to enable personalize visuals as a preview feature in Power BI. Click on the button ‘OK’ to proceed further.
It is necessary to enable the personalize visuals feature in the Power BI report level (Power BI file level) as well. For this, open the specific Power BI report (i.e. the Annual Sales Report file in my case) and navigate to Options and Settings > Options > Report Settings under current file. The user will be directed into the window shown below.
Tick on the checkbox, ‘allow report readers to personalize visuals to suit their needs’ under personalize visuals. This enables the personalize visuals feature in Power BI for the specific Power BI file. Click on the button ‘OK’ to proceed further.
When the personalize visuals feature in Power BI is enabled for the specific Power BI file, the icon shown below should be visible in each visual in the report.
Disabling Personalize Visuals Feature in Visuals
When there is a requirement to disable the personalize visuals feature in a specific visual, select the visual and navigate to ‘visual header’ under format option in the visualization pane. Turn off the ‘personalize visual’ option in the bottom under visual header. This will disable the personalize visuals feature in Power BI for the specific visual. At this stage there will be no personalize visuals icon visible in the visual.
Personalize Visuals in Action
It is necessary to publish the specific Power BI report (Power BI file) with personalize visuals feature enabled to a workspace in the Power BI service. In my case, I published the Annual Sales report into my workspace in the Power BI service.
Hover a specific visual and click on the personalize visual icon in the visual header of that visual as shown below.
When clicked, the visual will be focused and a side panel will pop up to personalize the specific visual as shown below. This includes personalization by visualization type, axis, legend, value and tooltips.
When clicked on the visualization type, the visualization type of the report can be changed for the specific visual.
In my case, the visualization type I had used for the sales breakdown by product visual is a clustered bar chart. I will change it for a stacked column chart as shown below.
When clicked on the axis, the axis can be added or changed to any field in the data model.
In my case, the axis I had used for the sales breakdown by product visual is product. I will change it to country as shown below. A restriction that I noticed here is that the title of the visual cannot be changed as with the content of the visual.
When clicked on the legend, the legend field can be added or changed to any field in the data model.
In my case, I had not used a legend for this Sales Breakdown by Country visual. I will add the field segment as the legend.
When clicked on the value, the value field can be added or changed to any field in the data model.
The aggregation of the value field can be changed by clicking on the ellipsis in the value field.
In my case, the value field that I had used is Sales. I will not do any change for the value field.
When clicked on the tooltips, tooltips fields can be added or changed to any field in the data model.
In my case, I had not used any tooltip field for this Sales Breakdown by Country visual. I will add the field Sales as the tooltip.
Reverting Changes with Personalize Visuals
Click on the erase icon in the personalize visuals side panel to revert changes made with the personalize visuals feature.
Saving Personalized Visuals
It is necessary to add the edited report with the personalize visuals feature as a personal bookmark to save the changes.
Click on the ‘Bookmarks’ option in the top right-hand corner of the report opened in Power BI service and click on ‘Add a personal bookmark’.
When clicked on ‘Add a personal bookmark’, the below window will be prompted in the top right-hand corner. Provide an appropriate name for the bookmark and tick on the checkbox ‘Make default view’ it is required to see the specific view with personalize visuals as the default view. Click on ‘Save’ to save the bookmark.
The bookmark will be saved under ‘Bookmarks’ in the Power BI service as shown below.
Personalize visuals feature is a useful feature specifically for Power BI end users. The only aspect which needs improvement is the visual title. Under personalize visuals the end user should be given the option of editing the visual title. Other than that, it is a brilliant feature to have.