PowerApps baby steps – Introduction

Welcome reader, in the introduction post about PowerApps on TPC. For those of you that are new to the blog: I’m a Microsoft Project (Online) consultant. And the blog you are currently on is my way of venting out ideas I got in the field, as well as exploring new fields of interest.

Previous series have been “About posts” (which were larger than usual explorations of single features within MS Project), the Flaw’s series that started it all and a currently frequently returning subject on the UserVoice items related to Project and Portfolio Management.

This is the first post in a new series in which I take my first baby steps into the world of PowerApps and related technologies (such as Flow, Forms and AI). I have played around with PowerApps before, and I have implemented multiple Flows at customers already. But I feel that I’m “not quite there yet” in regards to providing the best solutions.

In the series I’ll explore PowerApps solutions from a PPM consultants perspective. Exploring options that can help you in your daily life working with the Microsoft Project and Portfolio Management tool set (and yes that’s more than just Project and Project Online).

Lets begin!

Low code no code solutions

The PowerApps promise is great and liberating for the better part of the office workforce. If your organisation has PowerApps enabled, and you have a repetitive action, there’s a good chance you will be able to simplify your work using PowerApps.

Low code no code comes from the idea that PowerApps is a easy to use and understand “development” tool. But without the direct need to learn coding languages. Which is great for me because I’ve never gotten past chapter one of any coding book.

PowerApps is born in the cloud

At the time of writing there are two plans to get a subscription to PowerApps. Both are subscriptions to the cloud, connected to either Office 365 or Dynamics 365. To my knowledge there’s no roadmap to get PowerApps “on-prem”. Have a closer look at the pricing page for the different options.

The thing I find most interesting about this “cloud native” status of PowerApps is that Microsoft takes control over what new and cool features are added for you. Just like Project Online, there’s no need to have a technical administrator anymore that runs monthly patches for you.

Pretty on any screen

The apps you will create are automatically designed to look good on any screen. There are two kinds of apps: “Model driven” and “Canvas” apps. In the next article I’ll dive into a bit more detail on what this means.

For now it’s great to know that you can have a PowerApp that looks good on a iPhone, Tablet or 8K tv screen without the need to dive deep into screen resolution issues.

Great sources on PowerApps

I’m not alone when it comes to interest in the subject. By far alone I would say. But I do think that when you “Niche down” to the combination of Project Management and PowerApps there aren’t that many sources around.

Here are a couple of sources that I would like to share and found interesting (some linked to PPM, some generic):

More sources will be added as I come across them. And here’s the list of articles that are on TPC currently related to PowerApps: