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Manual data entry options in your Power BI table / matrix reports

by Inforiver | Aug 01, 2022 | ,

Most of us would have encountered at least one Power BI report where we felt the need to enter or key in data manually inside the table or matrix. Unfortunately, the native Power BI table or matrix does not allow it. You will need to use Power Apps to enable it. Some third-party visuals allow it directly, but the capability and user experience are mostly limited.

Inforiver provides seven (7) different options to manually enter data in your Power BI report.

Note: The ability to directly double-click a cell and edit/update values is not included in this list. We are only exploring columns you can create in Inforiver exclusively for capturing data through manual user input.

The Data Input feature in Inforiver

You can start inserting a column to capture your data inputs by clicking on Insert --> Data Input. This action reveals seven manual data entry options:

  1. Numeric values
  2. Text
  3. Single-select
  4. Multi-select
  5. Check box  
  6. Date
  7. Person

Note that Person is available only in Inforiver Enterprise. You can also see two other options – Last updated at and Last updated by which are covered towards the end of this blog.

manual data entry

When you select any type, you are taken to a configuration screen. Amongst several options, you can define whether data entry should be restricted to edit mode, or if you would like the report consumers in reading view to be able to enter data as well. In the example shown below, we are creating a column dedicated for capturing a single value from the dropdown.

Data input - allow input

When I create a data input column of type Single Select, Inforiver allows me to create my own list or use one of the preset options. When I hover over an option, I can preview the dropdown values.

Preview the dropdown values

When I click on Yes/No, it takes me to the configuration screen that I can customize.

both read and edit mode

I have gone ahead and created columns for each of these types below. Note that the number and date column headers are automatically right aligned, while the text & dropdown column headers are left aligned. We at Inforiver have taken care of the finer details so that you can sit back and enjoy the experience.

text & drop down PowerBI

When I choose either of the two dropdown fields (Single Select or Multi Select), I can see the options listed in a dropdown.

Single Select or Multi Select PowerBI

When I select a date field, I get to see a date picker.

select data field see date picker

In the ‘Person’ column, you can input users from your organization. Double-click on any of the cells. You can see a list of the users within the organization. Select the desired user(s).

Person column PowerBI

Here are a few values that I have managed to enter in these columns. What do you think?

few values enter the columns

Once a data input column is added, two columns – Last updated at and last updated by get enabled which captures metadata for changes in data input column at a row level.

Note: These 2 columns are enabled once you add a data input column and can be found in the data input dropdown. They can also be enabled/disabled from ‘Manage Columns’.

enabled/disabled from Manage Columns

Note that there are other data entry options too – in the form of notes & comments, and also the simulation feature. To keep things simple, we have not covered them for now.

Note that all the data entries & updates are tracked by Inforiver’s interactive & filterable audit trail log - which helps you keep track of what has changed in the report.

Yeah, this is great. But can I write back this data to a database?

Absolutely. All of this data captured by Inforiver can be written back to a database - on-premise or cloud SQL, Snowflake, Azure and more. You can even write it to a shared folder like OneDrive. Or simply export to PDF or Excel.

Try out these features in Inforiver today.

Learn how Inforiver's writeback capability can transform your Power BI reports.

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Inforiver is the fastest way to do everything in Power BI. It enables citizen developer productivity and unleashes true self-service with our intuitive and interactive no-code data app suite for Microsoft Power BI. The product is developed by Lumel Technologies Inc, who are #1 Power BI Visuals AppSource Partner serving over 3,000+ customers worldwide with their xViz, Inforiver, and ValQ offerings.
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