Taking the Guess Work Out of Business Decisions

There is a famous quote from Sherlock Holmes: “It is a capital mistake to theorize before you have all the evidence. It biases the judgment” . While this quote was relevant back in the 19th century, it resonates even more today as organizations are striving for digital transformation. After all, digital transformation through process automation only delivers business value when the process is streamlined.

To understand the health of a business, it is very important to have insights into your process performance. K2 Appit for SharePoint recently released a preview program focused on reporting capability and consists of out-of-the-box Process Reports, Power BI integration using SmartObject OData API, and Power BI templates, which empower decision-makers with data insights.

K2 offers out-of-the-box process reports for real-time visibility and in-depth insights into your data. They include Process Overview Reports, Process Detail Reports and User Overview Reports all with the ability to be embedded into your K2 apps that use SmartForms or SharePoint pages.

  • The Process Overview Reports provide a rollup of all key process metrics such as number of active process instances, process errors, active tasks assigned at any given point and average duration of processes. In essence, this report lets you check the health of your business processes in a glance and highly useful for process owners, executives.
  • The Process Details Reports enable you to look at a little deeper. When reviewing the Process Overview report, if any of the processes are taking longer or an error is identified, the process details report can help you identify bottlenecks that could be corrected to unblock resources. These reports provide rich insights into activity trends.
  • The User Overview Report provides a view of an individual’s workload across all processes as well as an individualized view of all assigned and actionable tasks to help your team with prioritization. This report offers insights into what tasks are taking the longest to complete.
  • Embed out-of-the-box reports easily into your apps by placing them within a SmartForm or SharePoint pages. If you prefer and all-up view, K2 provides the flexibility to report into K2’s WorkDesk. Embedding reports delivers benefits that enable your users to make data-driven decisions in real time and in context of the action they need to take.

In addition to our out-of-the box reports, we’re also making data available for visualization through industry-leading tools. K2 helps unlock both process and business data via our OData API. By simply enabling this API in K2 Management you are able to integrate with the tools you love such as Power BI, Tableau, Excel and more and create custom reports.

Once enabled, you can also choose the SmartObjects you would like to expose as OData endpoints and begin building reports using data from third-party systems that your processes are integrated with, such as Salesforce, DocuSign, Dynamics CRM, SAP and many others. Combining line of business data and process data truly unlocks data driven decision making and process optimization.

For the rest of the blog I’ll focus on our integration with Power BI and share how K2 Appit customers can start taking advantage of these capabilities immediately. K2’s integration partnership with Microsoft Power BI is an important augment to what K2 has already enabled natively within the platform. Through integration with Power BI, K2 customers can intuitively and visually analyze the effectiveness of their workflows, gaining actionable insights into key business processes.

  • K2 has built a number of Process Analytics Templates for Power BI to provide an easy way to gain access to your K2 data. With our Power BI templates, you can view your process performance instantly. The templates built by K2 are preconfigured with a number of reports that present data as soon as you connect to your K2 instance. Once connected, data will automatically begin to prepopulate. Don’t see the report you need? Load the template into Power BI Desktop and create your own reports to supplement what we’ve provided and start making data driven decisions immediately!
  • If you’re not using Power BI Desktop, grab the K2 Process Analytics Content Pack from Microsoft Power BI AppSource and load it into your Power BI Online instance.

You’ll see reports and dashboards come to life once you’ve connected to K2. You can then customize these reports using Power BI’s Online Report creation interface to meet your business needs, pin new reports to your Power BI Online dashboard, and make them available to your colleagues in minutes.

In either scenario you can take advantage of Power BI’s drill-through capabilities to dive deeper into rich process activities for better analysis, understand your team’s workload, identify bottlenecks or review usage trends, all from within your Microsoft Power BI dashboard to visualize your K2 reports.

Check out the short video to see an overview of the new reporting capabilities.

Want to learn more? Join our live webinar “Process Insights for data driven decisions: K2 and Microsoft Power BI” by K2’s Senior Director Product Planning, Brandon Brown, and Microsoft’s Engineering Program Manager, Youssef Shoukry, as they dive deep into the new reports, walk through the benefits of using Power BI and K2 together, and answer questions you may have. Learn more about Power BI Embedded here.

Unlike Sherlock Holmes who cried “Data! Data! Data! — I can't make bricks without clay,” K2’s OData API offers you a powerful new way to use third party reporting tools with both K2 process data and line of business data. We are pleased to provide Power BI templates and content packs to accelerate insights into your business processes.

1 The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, “A Scandal in Bohemia”

2 The Adventure of the Copper Beeches