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Set up a BI Center site in SharePoint Online


Applies to: SharePoint Online Enterprise (E3 and E4), Power BI for Office 365, Office 365 ProPlus, Excel Online, Excel 2013

Topic Last Modified: 2013-12-18

Summary:Create a place in SharePoint Online to store and manage basic BI content, such as Excel workbooks and Web Part pages.

A Business Intelligence (BI) Center site in SharePoint is a site that you can use to store, share, and manage basic BI content, such as Excel workbooks and dashboards that were created by using Web Part Pages. If your organization’s subscription to Office 365 for enterprises includes SharePoint Online (Plan 2), you can easily set up and use a BI Center site. For more information, see What is a BI Center site?.

In this article

When you create a BI Center site, you create a site collection in the SharePoint Admin Center. This means that you must be an administrator in SharePoint Online.

To create a BI Center site in Office 365
  1. In SharePoint Online, choose Admin > SharePoint to open the SharePoint Admin Center.

  2. In the SharePoint Admin Center, choose Site Collections.

  3. In the ribbon, click New > Private Site Collection.

  4. In the New Site Collection page, in the Title text box, specify a title for the site, such as Business Intelligence Center or BI Center.

  5. In the Web Site Address box, specify the last part of the website address for the site, such as BICenter.

  6. In the Select a template section, on the Enterprise tab, choose Business Intelligence Center.

  7. In the Administrator box, specify who will be the site administrator. You can only specify one name in this box.

  8. Specify the storage quota amount that you want to use.

  9. (This is optional.) Specify a server resource quota for the site.

  10. Choose OK. The site is created.

Now that the BI Center site is created, the next step is to assign user permissions. You do this by sharing the site with others.

When you share a site such as a BI Center site with others, you assign people and groups to roles that determine their level of permissions. The following table summarizes the different roles and permissions that you can assign.


Role Permissions


Read permissions that enable users to view information in the BI Center.


Contribute permissions that enable users to view and create items, such as reports, and save them to this site.


Design permissions that enable users to view, create, and publish items that include dashboards and Web Part pages within the BI Center site.


Full Control permissions that enable users to view, create, and publish dashboards and Web Part pages, and to view or edit user permissions.

For more information about user permissions in SharePoint Online, see Understanding permission levels.

To share a BI Center site
  1. In the BI Center site, choose Share.

  2. Type the names of the users or groups to whom you want to grant access.

  3. Choose Show Options.

  4. In the Select a group or permission level dropdown list, select the permission level that you want, and then choose Share.

  5. Repeat steps 1-4 until you have assigned all the permission levels that you want to use for the site.

If your organization is using Power BI for Office 365, consider using Power BI sites to store, manage, and share content such as Excel workbooks. A BI Center site is not the same thing as Power BI sites. In Power BI sites, workbooks are displayed as thumbnail images. The thumbnail images make it easy for people to select the files they want to use. In addition, Power BI sites displays workbooks in multiple locations in a single view so that people can access their files quickly and easily.

For more information, see the following resources:

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