3 basic rookie mistakes with Power Apps

Publication date: 2022-01-20

There is one common thing for the beginners of the Power Platform journey and ones that have already gained some skills – mistakes. In many cases they are “part of the learning process”, “opportunities to learn,” “portals of discovery” …. all these encouraging sentences make me smirk when I am coming back to my gaffes. It does not matter if you want to learn something from the below experience or just smile a little – welcome to my Junior Sin Palace.

Early on in my journey, I wanted to see what serious app design looked like. I tried throwing myself in at the deep end. I jumped from a support role alone to an architect.

While working on the sample project, I changed structures without much thought. The lack of knowledge about the plan for the finished product kept me creating all-new columns and lists with additional collections and variables. When it reached the level of pure chaos, I was being too afraid to delete anything. I spent two full days detangling all information.

Lesson learned: get to know and think about your application architecture well first!

When I got my first app to make, I was easily fascinated by how UI and UX changes can be quickly provided in PowerApps. Visuals were a critical issue for the Client, and it was a quick to-do thing to present the progress, which I also wanted to see as quickly as possible. 

Every screen of my app had a different function and to quickly see how some controls would look with each other I have started setting them separately.

10 screens, 50 controls, and around 30 visual properties for each…

…I have clicked my way to Client satisfaction in “only” ~15 000 moves.

And of course, there were changes.

Lesson learned: knowing about certain features of the Power Apps editor can save you a ton of time

Ah, yes – the attitude desired by everyone around you but crystal pain in your schedule. As a Junior, I still want to do a lot of stuff on my own, especially since every solved case or issue is a boost of serotonin for my brain. What is better than hearing relieved “it works”? But – also as a Junior – you are not aware of how a simple problem can crack the whole app.

Many hours were spent on looking for coma, dot, or bracket; one hour was spent on looking for the error because the app did not work for one person (…it was a capital letter issue). 

Do not get me wrong – it is good to try to solve something on your own but set a deadline for your research and then do not be afraid to ask for help.

Lesson learned: Do not be afraid to search for the answer and ask some questions. There are plenty of people inside and outside of your company that are willing to help. Their experience can save you time.