Becoming an MVP

I am extremely excited this month I was awarded the  Microsoft Data Platform MVP.

So besides getting lots of Microsoft shirts, stickers and a cool glass art- work,

The #reward and the #award

A post shared by yana (@yanaber777) on

I have also made new friends, participated in community meetings and learned how important it is to share with the community my expertise, time and efforts.

This week, we had a meeting of MVP’s in the Vancouver area, organized by Simran Chaudhry, our Microsoft manager, and it was great to meet there people that are MVP’s for 7 and even 15 years. So what do we talk about in those meetings? Mostly about fun stuff, we get to know each other, our goals and personal things, it is a community of friends after all that work together. We also talk about new initiatives and hope to be working together.

My mailbox is filled with questions and answers by very talented and friendly people who can answer and improve just about anything. I am still pretty new to this and off course not yet contributing much in the MVP community but I have set myself a personal goal to be able to help and ask or answer a number of questions. I hope to meke it there with some hard work and fun spirit.

Meanwhile I am part of the organization team for Vancouver’s SQL Saturday, August 28th, and I would love to see everyone there.


My “live Performances” :-)

My presentations, Meetups and Webinars…See you in every PowerBI and SharePoint/Office 365 Meetup in Vancouver or Redmond!

I am going to be helping Charles Sterling (Chass), with his Power Apps presentation in Office 365 user group Redmond, this July

SQL Saturday Redmond PASS #613- Using PowerBI and Office 365 to enable Decision Support in Small Companies Slides Deck


SharePoint Saturday Vancouver 2017 – Product Management using Office 365 tools Slides Deck  Recording
SharePoint Saturday Calgary 2017 – Product Management using Office 365 tools Slides Deck
SharePoint Saturday Calgary 2017 – Give More Power To the users PowerBI and API, presenting with Scott Stauffer Slides Deck Recording
Vancouver PowerBI user group March 2017 meeting- My story with data and PowerBI The Dashboard Recording
Vancouver SharePoint user group October 2016 meeting- Give more Power to the users! PowerBI and API MeetUp Page
Webinar – November 2016 PowerBI as a Decision support methodology enabler  Recording


SharePoint Saturday Vancouver

This was a very exciting event for me as a proud member of the VanSPUG board – the local SharePoint user group and personally as a SharePoint enthusiast.

The preparations and organization went well, we had many sessions with leading SharePoint, BI, Dev and user adoption experts.

We also had an announcement that was made by Charles Sterling (Chass) from Microsoft regarding a new connectivity between Power Apps and PowerBI, demonstrated the first time during his session. I had the privilege to be his “data monkey” and help with all the data entries. A useful trick that he is always preaching for, add a person who is going to help you presenting and will enter all the code lines, url’s and maybe even move the slides forward. You can even pick a person from the audience, and worse case scenario, just ask him or her to step back. During this presentation we have also learned that it is better having all your designing with PowerApps done in the desktop editor rather than the online tool… ohh well.

The event was a great success, you can see the pictures in our Facebook page:

VanSPUG Facebook 

My tips for organizing an event like this and sharing my expirience in VanSpug:

  1. Select the winning team! I am part of the best board I have ever had the chance to work with and it shows in the growth of our community, the cooperation, supporting each others decisions and commitments
  2. Plan – We have used the tools such as planner to complete the planning. We came up with a checklist of tasks, assigned and delivered. In a workplace it is a common sense, but in a volunteer organization it is not that obvious.
  3. Communicate- we have tried the teams communicator and Skype chat. Eventually settled on the Office 365 Outlook. The emails are short and we are all attentive to the requests.

Small but significant- looking at other SharePoint Saturday and SQL Saturday events, the small stuff were the once that made the difference. Clear navigation option, understanding where the rooms are located and having all the lectures printed near the room’s door really helped the audience to get to the right place in the right time. Just like navigation is an important part of your SharePoint portal, it should also be a priority in the venue.

I had also the privilege to participate in the event and give my presentation regarding Product Management using all the Office 365 tools. I must say that groups, planner and off course SharePoint and PowerBI were my leading recommendations. I will explain in details in another post.

 Link to the YouTube Video

Calgary SharePoint Saturday

  • I was speaking in SharePoint Saturday Calgary April 1st 2017.

    Calgary SharePoint Saturday event site

    My first session was with the wonderful Scott Stauffer, his blog: and the twitter feed: @SQLSocialite, you should follow him if PowerBI and SQL is somehting you find interesting. We have discussed PowerBI basics, made some jokes and showed the end users that you don’t have to be part of the IT team in order to be successful with PowerBI. 

    You can fins our session recording in my YouTube.

    Power BI & API: Give more power to the users!
    The 2nd session was more about Product Management and the art of the possible using SharePoint, powerBI and office 365.

    Product Management in SharePoint online and Office 365 end to end process

    Product Managment with Office 365.PNG

    I had lots of fun, mat new and old friends and was happy to share my experiments with SharePoint and data platforms.

Creating my story with Data

So I was looking to make my resume stand out while presenting my skills with the new and shiny PowerBI. (my powerBI page in my site)

I was inspired by an article, Business Insider has created about Marissa Mayers resume.

So I have continued, just like with any other product, using my Business Analysis skills:

Defining the the Business need​:

  • Who is the audience?
    • Potential employer/customer
    • People I am looking to impress
  • Why I want them to see it? ​
    • To show case my skills with PowerBI
    • Look into the details of my resume without getting bored
  • What do I want to  show them? ​
    • How can I tell a story using data

Now that I know what is going to be part of my story with data, I have started to think about the technical aspect.

Technical requirements  ​

  • Real time update? Custom visuals? Sharing? Mobile? ​

​The real time update won’t be necessary, once a month I will update my current work status and the dashboard can be updated within 24 hours. My subscription (pro) allows up to 8 scheduled updates a day, with an hour minimum intervals. I can also manually refresh and republish the dashboard if this is a live demo. The reports were created for my web page, which is built using HTML CSS and some JS for the fun parts. The design is responsive but I will not create separate mobile version of the data visualizations. The out of the box PowerBI versions seemed too look fine in the mobile browser. Since the target audience is going to watch from the browser and not from the PowerBI mobile app as this is not a link to the dashboard but an embedded report.

Designing the solution

What do I need?

  1. Data Source to create a data set –
    • I have used first a google docs table but it had one problem, it was not saved as a table and I needed to save it again from scratch.
    • I have used a SharePoint list, but discovered that this cannot yet be a direct data source (this was done just a month before it became an option 🙂 )
    • I have used an Excel file, that is saved in a SharePoint library and is accessible publicly. (it’s called One Drive bc I have first saved it there and than moved to the SP library. It works from One drive the same way) I have connected this as a data source in PowerBI, after saving the data in the Excel as a table which is very important to make the spreadsheet a valid data source.
      The data source contains a line for each month since my graduation and starting my career, September 2005 till today (March 2017). In each line, I have shown my work location, the field, technologies I have been working with, company I have worked for and off course the job title.
  2. Report/Reports
    Based on the data-set I have created a new report:
    2.1 dragged the first data visualization I have chosen, the map, checked the columns from the table indicating location and
    2.2 Chose the next visualization the Treemap, chose the Group as the Location city, the Values as Count of Workplace (which will count the number of times the specific workplace is displayed in the rows)
    2.3 Dragged the bar-chart visual to have the information regarding my experience in each industry type to be presented.
    The Treemap visualization filter selection can be seen here:
  3. Publish option –

I have saved the report in my PowerBI account, that means it was uploaded to my storage, the PowerBI API library, on my Office365 account. After which I have chosen in the menu File-> Publish to web
PowerBI have opened a wizard, where I could choose the option of embedding in my WebSite. The result was the following: 

This is what I have pasted in the HTML code of my WebSite:

<div class=”container”>
<div class=”row”>
<iframe width=”800″ height=”600″ src=”″ frameborder=”0″ allowFullScreen=”true”></iframe>
<div class=”row”>
<div class=”col s12″>
<iframe width=”800″ height=”600″ src=”″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen=”true”></iframe>
<div class=”col s12″>
<h2 class=”text_h2″> MY PowerBI Twitter Feed </h2>
<a class=”twitter-timeline” href=”” data-widget-id=”843961672100274176″>Tweets about #PowerBI from:yana_berkovich</a>
<script>!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?’http’:’https’;if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);;js.src=p+”://”;fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,”script”,”twitter-wjs”);</script>

The last div is for the Twitter feed related to PowerBI that I have created, just to add this is just for fun and actually works! 🙂

Testing ​

  • Hi there, have you seen my page yet? (5 AM Israel time is 7 PM in Vancouver…)​ I have asked people with different browsers and used the chrome different sizing option to test in different screen sizes. (There are still some problems with the top links in my site but that’s not part of the PowerBI topic…so next post)

Requirements gathering featuring myself as the business user is a very interesting experience; Documentation is still important! (Otherwise it takes you forwever to find the right report.​

The page link: ​

The link to the lightning session