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InformSU vs InformSU SSRS

Logging In/Access

Training and Development


Power BI Functions

What are the differences between InformSU and InformSU SSRS?

InformSU is operated via Power BI and is where ITS is currently developing reports using the new data warehouse. InformSU SSRS houses the previous operational reports used by Seattle University. Both will coexist as we gather requirements to build/replace reports and train users. Some reports may always exist in InformSU SSRS due to the nature of their requirements, but InformSU offers new reporting capabilities, simple visualizations, custom dashboards, and further enhancements via Power BI.

How do I access Power BI? 

There are a number of ways to access Power BI. You can go to and login to your account. Any reports that have been shared with you will be in the left hand section called “Shared with me”. You can also access Power BI from the Office 365 waffle icon. If you don’t see it in your frequently used apps section you can search for it in the top search bar. 

There is a new staff member who needs access to Seattle University data. Who do I contact for access to data?

The process to request access to Seattle U data will be similar to the current process. There are separate processes depending on what kind of reports you are requesting and each is outlined here. 

There is a staff member who no longer needs access to Power BI. Who do I contact to update their permissions?

If a staff member has left or needs specific permissions removed, please contact us at

What are the role differences between Institutional Research (IR) and Information Technology Services (ITS) for SU Power BI? Who should I contact depending on my issue/concern?

IR and ITS will both be involved in the creation of official InformSU reports. If you have a question about an official InformSU report, please contact us at and we will direct your question as necessary.  

Are there still reports that I will receive directly from Institutional Research (IR)? 

IR will continue to generate weekly and quarterly reporting on enrollment. All reports will be available in Power BI. Institutional Research will communicate to users prior to any changes in accessing or distributing these reports.

Can I access this data via my mobile device?

Yes, you can download the Power BI App for Android, iOS, or a Windows device and login to view your dashboards and reports. You can find links to each version here and a detailed tutorial for how to view and interact with your dashboards here.  

When can I anticipate these changes to be implemented?

The new InformSU reports and dashboards will be released in a phased rollout. To see the calendar of model rollouts please check the InformSU site. To see details on upcoming models and releases please check the Project Updates and Timeline portion of the website.

Are there additional resources or tools to learn about Power BI?

Answer: Yes, Microsoft has published a large repository of documentation about Power BI and its many functions. For a general overview of what Power BI is check out this document. They have also published a video series which is broken down into short 5 – 10 minute sections. 

I would like to make adjustments to my dashboard. Who do I contact for help?

Answer: Please contact us at to discuss any changes to the official published dashboards. 

I have a problem with my dashboard or report. Who do I contact for help?

Answer: Please contact us at informsu@seattleu.ed  and if able include screenshots to best describe your issue. We also have office hours and further in person training opportunities where you can ask questions and receive help. Check out our opportunities.

The Power BI App isn’t working on my browser, what browsers are supported? 

Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer 11, Google Chrome, Safari, and Firefox are all supported browsers for viewing the Power BI App. 

How often is data refreshed?

Data is refreshed at least once a day although some reports may be refreshed more frequently if necessary. 

What is the difference between Power BI Desktop and the Power BI Service? 

The Power BI Service is the online version used for sharing and viewing reports. Report consumers will login at and open their Shared with me folder to view their reports. Power BI Desktop is the software report developers use to create the reports which are then published to the Power BI Service. The Power BI Desktop App is free to download in the Microsoft Download Center. Direct access to SU data sources via the Desktop App can be requested at, requests will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

Can I still export my data to excel?

Yes, you can export a report within the dashboard to Excel. In the top righthand corner of the report click the ellipses (…) and select export data. Any slicer selections you have made while viewing the report will be reflected in the excel file. You can choose to export as an .xlsx or .csv file.  

Can I favorite reports and dashboards? 

Yes, you can favorite information across multiple workspaces to allow for easy access. See a detailed tutorial on how to add favorites here.

Can I bookmark frequently used slicer selections?

Yes, this feature will save you time as you can input the commonly used selections once and save as a bookmark for easy access later. From the report view click “Bookmarks” on the right side of the toolbar. A dropdown will appear and you can select “Add personal bookmark” to save the current slicer selections. If any Bookmarks were created by the author of the report they will show up in the Bookmarks pane to the right of the report. If you don’t see a Bookmarks pane you can enable it by selecting View and turning on the Bookmarks pane in the drop down. 

Can I make my own reports? 

Once a report has been shared with you it can be downloaded and edited using Power BI Desktop. Note: This does not update the official InformSU version and data is no longer certified by Information Technology Services/Institutional Research. Regular trainings will be offered to help users create custom measures, visualizations, and dashboards. 

Can I share this report/dashboard with others? 

To share, click the “Share” button on the top right of the report and enter the email of the person you’d like to share with. You can also restrict the recipient from sharing the report themselves. If you are not the creator of the report or dashboard you may not have access to share the report as the original user may have limited your ability to share the content. 

What is the difference between a report and a dashboard? 

A report is a set of interactive visuals pulling information from a single dataset. Reports can be pinned to a dashboard to summarize data from multiple sources focused on a particular theme or question. 

What kinds of charts can be created in Power BI? 

Power BI offers a number of visualizations ranging from tables to area charts to geographical maps. New visualizations are added regularly and the service also allows you to create custom visualizations. See a full list of Power BI visualizations. 

I’d like to bring a printout of my dashboard to a meeting, can I print from the Power BI App? 

Yes, you can print an entire dashboard, dashboard tile, or report page. See here for step by step instructions.