Unlocking the Full Potential of Power Platform in Your Organization
The Microsoft Power Platform provides incredible opportunities for organizations to enhance efficiency and innovate quickly by creating tailored solutions and automated processes with low-code. However, without the right strategy and governance, Power Platform adoption can spiral out of control.
This article provides pragmatic tips and best practices for organizations looking to optimize usage of the Power Platform across your organization to drive innovation. Follow this guide to drive user adoption and maximize value.
Who Should Follow this Guide?
This guide is perfect for business and IT leaders in any size organization that has adopted, or is considering adopting, Power Platform. The tips outlined here will help you:
- Gain visibility into Power Platform usage
- Implement governance and lifecycle management
- Empower business users to innovate safely
- Leverage AI to accelerate development
- Ultimately realize the full potential from your Power Platform investment
Monitor and Evaluate Usage
Before optimizing Power Platform adoption, you need visibility into current usage. Start by auditing what solutions have already been built by makers in your environments. Catalog all existing apps, flows, connectors, etc.
Then, implement tracking to measure the real business impact of these solutions. Are they driving revenue, lowering costs, or reducing risks? This data is crucial to focus your governance efforts and justify future investment.
Adopt Best Practices
Next, align your strategy and standards to Power Platform best practices. The Microsoft Power Platform Adoption Framework covers critical areas like:
- Governance – policies for development, testing, security, compliance
- ALM – environment strategies, CI/CD pipelines
- Performance – solution optimization, capacity planning
- Support – training programs, community enablement
There are options to support you here, including Microsoft’s Power Platform Center of Excellence (CoE) Starter Kit and the newer Managed Environments capability.
The Power Platform CoE Starter Kit includes pre-built templates and tools to accelerate setup of a Center of Excellence. It is free but does come with operational overhead to deploy and maintain.
Managed Environments is a suite of premium capabilities that allows admins to manage Power Platform at scale with more control, less effort, and more insights.
Foster IT-Business Collaboration
Power Platform success requires tight collaboration between IT and business. Clearly define responsibilities:
- IT – provides robust environments for development, testing and production. Handles identity and access control. Monitors capacity and performance. Applies policies to protect data.
- Business – identifies opportunities where Power Platform can drive value. Develops solutions iteratively based on business needs.
Create a structured intake process for the business to request new Power Platform environments from IT. Use the inventory from step 1 to identify opportunities for reusable components and the business need for data from enterprise systems. Build a library of reusable components and business data connections so makers can self-serve these building blocks.
Establish Control Measures
Unmanaged, Power Platform adoption can turn chaotic quickly. Set guardrails with:
- Tenant isolation – Apply a rule to restrict data moving inbound or outbound to different tenants.
- Adjusting the Default Environment – Rename the default environment to be clear that its purpose is for personal productivity.
- Environment strategy – Use multiple environments such as development, test, and production to manage the lifecycle of solutions. Restrict production access to only those who need it.
- Environment routing – This is a great feature to automatically route makers to development environments separate from production and the default environment.
- Control sharing – Apply limits to sharing in non-production environments to prevent solution sprawl.
- Data policies – Classify data sources and restrict the ability to connect business data sources with third party platforms.
- Learning – Develop internal advisor networks. Promote maker skills sharing.
Leverage capabilities in the Power Platform Admin Center to manage the governance and health of the platform. Adopt an Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) strategy for solutions and only move solutions to production environments after proper testing and approval.
Leverage AI Technologies
AI is transforming Power Platform. Infusing AI will accelerate development and boost solution sophistication.
- Ideas – Auto-generate code snippets and formulas for makers based on questions posed in natural language.
- Copilots – Guide makers to build apps from a prompt. Provide an in-app copilot to end users that infuses an AI chat experience with app data understanding.
- Automation – Convert descriptions of manual processes into automated workflows.
Proactively build AI into solutions to enable conversational interfaces, process automation, document analysis and more. Start small with individual models, then expand into orchestrating multiple AI capabilities for truly intelligent solutions.
Go Forth and Unlock Power Platform Potential
Following these suggestions will help you start the journey of building a mature Power Platform capability in your organization. With the proper strategy, governance, and AI infusion, you can empower business users to innovate safely and realize the full potential of Power Platform.
The result will be accelerated digital transformation through solutions that provide real business impact.
How We Can Help You
Here’s three ways we can help:
- If your organization is just starting with the Power Platform – schedule a free Power Platform briefing to discuss how to set your organization up for success with the Power Platform.
- If your organization has been using the Power Platform for a while and is looking to get more value – schedule a free Power Platform briefing to discuss how to enhance and scale your low-code program to drive innovation at scale.
- If you need help in building a specific solution, contact us to schedule a call to discuss further.