Set up lists for SharePoint Online integration with PowerApps, Microsoft Flow, and Power BI


This article is part of a tutorial series on using PowerApps, Microsoft Flow, and Power BI with SharePoint Online. Make sure you read the series introduction to get a sense of the big picture, as well as related downloads.

SharePoint has a ton of features for sharing and collaboration, but we will focus on one feature for this scenario: SharePoint lists. A list is just a collection of data that you can share with team members and other site users. We'll review the lists used for this scenario, then you can create them in your own SharePoint Online site.

Step 1: Understand the lists

The first list is Project Requests, where a project requestor adds a request. The project approver then reviews the request and approves or rejects it.

List Column Data Type Notes
Title Single line of text Default column, used for project name
Description Single line of text
ProjectType Single line of text Values: new hardware, upgraded hardware, new software, upgraded software
RequestDate Date
Requestor Single line of text
EstimatedDays Number Enables comparison of requestor estimate to project manager estimate to actual
Approved Single line of text Values: pending, yes, no


We also use the ID column, which is generated by SharePoint and hidden by default. We use basic data types for simplicity, but a real app might use more complex types, like Person or Group for the Requestor column. For information on data types supported by PowerApps, see Connect from Microsoft PowerApps to SharePoint.

The second list is Project Details, which tracks details for all approved projects, like which project manager is assigned.

List Column Data Type Notes
Title Single line of text Default column, used for project name
RequestID Number Matches the value in the Project Requests list ID column
ApprovedDate Date
Status Single line of text Values: not started, in progress, completed
ProjectedStartDate Date When the project manager estimates that the project will start
ProjectedEndDate Date When the project manager estimates that the project will end
ProjectedDays Number Working days; would typically be calculated, but isn't in this scenario
ActualDays Number For completed projects
PMAssigned Single line of text Project manager

Step 2: Create and review the lists

To continue with the scenario, you need to create the two SharePoint lists and populate them with sample data. We'll show you how to do this by creating the list and pasting sample data into it. Make sure you have the Excel files from the download package.


Use Internet Explorer for this step.

Create the lists

  1. In Internet Explorer, in your SharePoint site, click or tap New, then List.

    Create new SharePoint list

  2. Enter the name "Project Requests", then click or tap Create.

    Specify name for new list

    The Project Requests list is created, with the default Title field.

    Project Requests list

Add columns to the list

  1. Click or tap New item icon, then Single line of text.

    Add single line of text field

  2. Enter the name "Description", then click or tap Save.

  3. Repeat steps 1. and 2. for the other columns in the list:

    1. Single line of text > "ProjectType"
    2. Date > "RequestDate"
    3. Single line of text > "Requestor"
    4. Number > "EstimatedDays"
    5. Single line of text > "Approved"

Copy data into the list

  1. Click or tap Quick edit.

    Quick edit for list

  2. Select the cells in the grid.

    List with all columns

  3. Open the project-requests.xlsx workbook and select all the data (not the headings).

    Project Requests Excel table

  4. Copy the data and paste it into the grid in SharePoint, then click or tap Done.

    Completed list with data

  5. Repeat the list creation and copy process for the "Project Details" list, using the project-details.xlsx workbook. Refer to the Project Details table in Step 1: Understand the lists for the column names and data types.

Step 3: Update connections to samples - optional

As noted in the introduction to this tutorial series, we included two sample apps and a report in the download package. You can complete this scenario without using these samples, but if you want to use the samples, you need to update the connections to the SharePoint lists. You update them so that they use your lists as a data source, rather than ours.

Update connections for the sample apps

  1. In PowerApps Studio, click or tap Open in the left pane.

  2. Click or tap Browse, then open the project-management-app.msapp file that you downloaded.

  3. Click or tap Allow, so that PowerApps can use SharePoint.

  4. On the ribbon, on the View tab, click or tap Data sources.

    PowerApps data sources

  5. In the Data panel, click or tap the ellipsis (. . .) next to Project Details, then click or tap Remove.

    Remove Project Details data source

  6. Click or tap Add Data Source.

    Add data source

  7. We'll show you two ways to connect to the list, depending on whether PowerApps already established a SharePoint connection for you:

    • If you see a SharePoint connection already, click or tap that connection.

      Existing connection

    • If you don't see a SharePoint connection, click or tap New connection.

      New connection

      Then click or tap SharePoint, and click or tap Create.

      SharePoint connection

  8. Enter the URL for the SharePoint Online site that contains the lists you created, then click or tap Go.

    SharePoint URL

  9. Select the Project Details list, then click or tap Connect.

    Project Details list

    The Data panel now shows the connection that you created.

    Data sources

  10. Click or tap the ellipsis (. . .) next to Project Details, then click or tap Refresh.

    Refresh Project Details data source

  11. Click Run app icon in the upper right corner to run the app, and make sure the connection works properly.

  12. Click or tap File, then save the app to the cloud.

  13. Repeat the steps in this section for project-requests-app.msapp, using the Project Requests list.

Update connections for the sample report

  1. Open project-analysis.pbix in Power BI Desktop.

  2. On the ribbon, on the Home tab, click or tap Edit queries, then Data source settings.

    Edit queries

  3. Click or tap Change Source.

    Data source settings

  4. Enter the URL for your SharePoint Online site, then click or tap OK, then Close.

    SharePoint list URL

  5. Power BI Desktop displays a banner under the ribbon, so you can apply changes and bring in data from the new source. Click or tap Apply Changes.

    Apply query changes

  6. Sign in with a Microsoft account (the account you use to access SharePoint Online), then click or tap Connect.

    Connect to SharePoint Online

Next steps

The next step in this tutorial series is to generate an app to handle project requests.