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Printable report in Power BI

Data Bear’s Monday Motivation Blog Post

Happy Monday everybody, today I’ll show you my work around for a printable report in Power BI with a Pro licence.

Printable report in Power BI

I have recently run into the problem of having to create a report that must be printable for an executive monthly info pack.  Unfortunately, paginated reporting is not available with just a pro licence, which is all I have.  Although it is available with Premier per user, that was not an option for me.  So I had to be crafty and I’d like to share some of the things that worked with me to create a printable report in Power BI.

  1. Forget interactions

You need to get your head in the non-interaction space.  Obviously, you cannot interact with the report when it’s printed, therefore don’t add slicers on the page to filter your data, they take up real estate.  If you need to filter a visual, you can need to use the visual filter option on the Filter pane.

I hardcoded the dates but depending on your need you can make it dynamic by using the advanced filter options.

Visual level filter

 

  1. Not too many visuals

Visuals that don’t add value, will only take up space.  Noting that my report was for executive level, and over-cluttering it with visuals just wasn’t an option for me.  This report had to replace an excel report that consisted completely of tables and figures. Trying to duplicate that is no easy feat and was not something I wanted to do.  Tables and matrices in Power BI are great but are structured and when you are used to the freedom of adding any column you want in excel, it does create some challenges.

  1. Orientation decision

The orientation of your page is really important, especially if the report will be forming part of another, you don’t want the user to turn the page from landscape to portrait on every other page.  In my example, my printable report in Power BI needed to be in portrait orientation.

Power BI reports by default are in landscape, but it is possible in portrait, and this is how.

On the page settings change the page size to custom and then width 794 and height 1123.

Custom A4 page size

To build your report, switch the view on the view tab to actual size.

View Actual size

Extra tip:  Create a background in Power Point.  See my post on report designs here, on how to create them, just switch to portrait view in power point as well.

 

  1. Publish to the service

Once your report is published to the service, simply print it, or export to PDF and then print.

Export to pdf

 

 

PDF view

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