Data in Salesforce is the key to all answers that businesses need. Reports and Dashboards allow you to translate these answers into understandable and usable format.

Let’s discuss a few basic questions to create the right reports and dashboards:

Who are they created for?

Reports and Dashboards are created for specific reasons. Identification of the metrics that can measure those objectives is the first step. Next comes mapping of the data points that can give the required insights. This means information related to (but not limited to) the company, its customers, the industry it operates in, and the competitors needs to be picked and presented in the fashion the user needs.

Timing matters

The best frequency for reporting the required data needs to be checked. The information should be readily available whenever and wherever needed – ranging from real-time snapshots of the business to yearly summaries.

Reporting Structure

The structure being used for existing reports and dashboards should make it easy to find and run them. This is important to ensure that everyone can find what they need, without rebuilding it. Also, when a new one is created, the structure would help place it at the right place, where it can be located easily when needed.

Report Types

It is wise to hide the report types that are not relevant for your business. Unnecessary report types can result in accidental reports being created. By checking the “Select Report Types to Hide” box, you can start hiding the report types that you don’t want.

Floating Report Header

Often, we have reports that run into multiple pages. In such reports it is useful to display the column header visible on each page when we scroll the report page. This can be done using Setup => Customize => Reports and Dashboards => User Interface settings => Click.

Naming

Following a naming convention for Report Folders, Reports, Dashboard Folders, and Dashboards makes it easier to locate them and keep them organized.

Search using Optimized Fields

Some standard fields are optimized for search: Id, Name, OwnerId, CreatedDate, SystemModStamp, RecordType. Master-detail fields and lookup fields are also optimized for search. Custom fields are optimized for search if External ID is selected for the field.

Proactive Cleaning and Archiving

It is a good practice to cleanup and archive reports and dashboards that have not being used in a specific time. These can be deleted if they are not needed, after another specified time-period. It needs to be ensured that no report that is running a Dashboard component gets deleted. A report on reports should be run at least once a year to filter out the ones not being used.

GOOD TO KNOW

  • You can add up to 20 reports in single dashboard.
  • Person who has a folder access, should get access to the linked reports (and the related dashboards that contain those reports)
  • Dashboard can run based on logged in user or specified user but reports always runs based on logged in user
  • Salesforce reports do not support importing data from other sources.

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