In this article, we give tips for planning a report ranging from the look and feel to calculation and filtration options that you can opt from.
The report builder in SQL Server sure provides you with a range of options to choose from when creating reports, but some tips on how you should make use of the tool, and what you should consider while making a report, would certainly be of some help. In a report builder, you can create content-rich reports with smart features that pretty much summarize all that you have stored in your databases. However, before you proceed towards creating a report, you need to plan what all do you wish to include in the report. These tips might help you plan better reports.
Format of the report
How do you want the report to look or appear is one of the foremost concepts you need to plan and understand? You can opt for rendering them online using a browser like Reporting services web portal, or opt for exporting them to different file formats. Here you need to keep in mind that your final report format should have all the key features you need, as you will not find all features in all formats.
How do you want to structure your reports?
You can opt for structuring your reports in a chart, matrix, tabular, or free-form structures for presenting data to users. You can also opt for highlighting certain important information with the use of objects like images, text boxes, lines, etc. This makes it easier for the users to navigate through your reports.
How do you want your reports to be filtered?
You can decide what data of your report is visible to what users by applying certain filters. By using filters you can also check what location is your report available at and at what time. For filtering your reports to show only the selected amount of data, you can opt for using parameters.
Do you wish to make use of your own calculations?
You might not always find the exact fields that you would want to make use of, in your reports. To ensure that your datasets and data sources are appearing in the correct fields, you can make use of calculated fields that you have created yourself. Here you can opt for multiplying, adding, subtracting, or dividing any given field from any other field in the table. For conditional formatting, you can also make use of Expressions, along with other advanced features.
How do you wish to deliver your reports?
You can opt for working on your report after saving it to a local computer, this works well if you wish to make use of the report data only for your information. If you wish to share report data with others you will have to save it to a report server, the one that has been configured in native mode. You may also opt for saving it to report server present in the SharePoint integrated mode. If your report is saved on the server, other users will be able to access it whenever they need to.
If you are responsible for the administration of SQL Server running in your company, do give thought about investing in a SQL Server fix tool. It can save your data during the most challenging times when normal backup and restore methods do not manage save all your data.
Victor Simon is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including access recovery and sql recovery software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com