Dashboards in Cognos have reached near technical par with reporting. New capabilities keep strengthening the platform. All that makes it difficult to know which to use: dashboards or reports?
In this on-demand webinar, we compare Cognos dashboards and reports, breaking down the differences in functionality between the two, and where each is best applied. Understanding the relative value of each will let you determine the best tool for your business requirements.
Get answers to these commonly asked questions and more
- What is the difference between a dashboard and a dashboard-style report?
- Where is the best place for experimental data discovery?
- What can reports do that dashboards can’t?
- Understanding the lingo: is a report a type of visualization or is it the other way around?
If you are a report author using Cognos Analytics, this will fill in any missing blanks and help you master your Cognos reporting domain!
Trainer and Consultant
Patrick has 21 years of experience in data science, business intelligence and data analytics. He is a Tableau Certified Associate and a Cognos expert whose product experience goes back to version 6. He is also versed in Actuate, Hyperion and Business Objects. His certifications include multiple programming languages, including Java and C++, and database certification (MS SQL).Read more
Q: Do you have a recommendation for making Cognos reports available via mobile? We haven’t had the best experience with the Reports mobile app. The Analytics app only supports dashboards and explorations.
A: Try to use the infographic templates as a starting point. They are made especially for mobile delivery. In addition, avoid crosstabs and lists since they are hard to read on small devices. Use the Fit page setting for a dashboard to allow auto resizing.
Q: Is there a way to run a governed report and auto load it into a Cognos data module/data set?
A: Unfortunately, no, not currently.
Q: What are your thoughts about using SQL instead of Cognos data models for reporting?
A: SQL should be used minimal and if possible avoided. Usually, SQL at the report level is due to using a transactional data source which is problematic in business intelligence tools. Consider making changes to the model and packages directly versus using SQL at the reporting level.
Q: Can we use DMR models in conjunction with dashboards in Cognos Analytics?
Q: Can Cognos dashboards be exported to a PDF and can we do the drill through from the dashboard to a report?
A: Dashboards can be exported to PDF; however, they lose interactivity. Drill throughs are also possible in dashboards.
Q: I created a dashboard on a DMR and used dimensional functions like firstChild and got a 503 error. Then, I built the dashboard in a report using the same data source (DMR) and the same formulas, but there was no error, why?
A: This would require looking at the report and source data in question. Unfortunately, without seeing the specifics, it is unknown why you are receiving an error. If you’d like to explore this further, call or email us at 888-601-6010 or [email protected]
Q: What is the recommended tool for Cognos ad hoc reporting with the graduated experience or dashboards?
A: Ad hoc reporting can be done in either dashboards or reporting using the preview page feature of reporting. To choose which one to use will depend on your skill set. If you’re more comfortable in a simple interface, dashboards would be suitable. If you require more granular information, then reporting is the answer.
Q: Can we use drill through in Cognos dashboards?
A: Yes, drill throughs can be created in dashboards.
Q: Is there a limit on of how many visualizations I can put in a dashboard?
A: While there is not a technical limit, you should take care on the aesthetics of how much information you’re placing on a dashboard. We recommend using the book Information Dashboard Design by Stephen Few to guide you.
Q: Will the ability to upload files in Cognos ever be automated?
A: This is something only IBM can answer. In practice uploaded files should be used to identify gaps in your data warehouse. A better long term strategic plan is to move data from XLS/CSV files into your data warehouse where they can be cleansed and validated.
Q: Resizing dashboards in Cognos can be annoying. I was using Cognos 11.1.1 and had to format a count with a percent in brackets so it looked like 75 ( 50%). Then, I developed the dashboard in Cognos Analytics, which needed to be copied into an Excel file. Do you have suggestions on how to do this differently?
A: If exporting to Excel is a feature needed, then reporting is the better option as you have more control over formatting the output. Dashboards can only be exported as PDF.
Q: How do I change the name of the data item in a column in Cognos Analytics?
A: You can change the name in a data module or package level for dashboards and it can be done in reporting.
Q: Can I sort the X axis using another column in Cognos Analytics?
A: Not currently in dashboards, use reporting to do this.
Q: Where can I get the recording of this demo?
A: On our website at: https://senturus.com/resources/cognos-analytics-dashboards-or-reports/.
Q: Can we rename the data item label in Cognos Analytics?
A: It would have to be changed in a data module or package level for dashboard and it can be done in reporting.
Q: Can the two charts be scaled the same and aligned on the X-axis in Cognos Analytics?
A: In dashboards to some degree. For the most accurate and granular ability, use reporting.
Q: Did IBM put in a clear all filters button in Cognos Analytics?
A: Yes, there is a clear all only for each filter.
Q: Can we change the speed of the slider to be slower in Cognos Analytics?
A: No, the speed cannot be changed.
Q: If we have multiple tabs and share, are the tabs visible?
A: Yes, all tabs will be visible.
Q: If I share a link, does it obey security permissions in Cognos Analytics? I don’t want to show certain data if the user doesn’t have permissions to that data.
A: Data security is enforced in both dashboarding and reporting.
Q: Can we set dashboards to auto refresh and schedule to email in Cognos Analytics automatically?
A: Not together. These are two separate functions. You can set a dashboard to auto refresh and then create a schedule.
Q: Can we use the dynamic year as a variable value in the title for two other visuals in Cognos Analytics?
A: Dynamic titles are not available in dashboards.
Q: Does Cognos Analytics allow us to refresh certain elements of the data in a dashboard, instead of refresh for the entire dashboard?
A: No, refresh is for all objects on the canvas.
Q: Can the color-coding rules be data driven in Cognos dashboard or is that only possible in reporting? We build table-based rules for those.
A: Conditional colors in dashboards can be set to percent for data driven results or hard coded numeric values.
Q: Have you seen any major issues with drill through reporting in Cognos Analytics? We’ve tried twice with no success. The first time, we received an error message when trying to establish the connection. The second time we connected, but the data would not filter properly.
A: There have been no reported issues about these troubles. This would require looking at your specific reports to see if there is an issue. If you’d like to explore this further, call or email us at 888-601-6010 or [email protected]
Q: Can you have a dashboard drill through to a report and then to a third report in Cognos Analytics?
A: A dashboard can drill to a report and then yes, that report can drill to something else.
Q: Do navigation paths work in Cognos Analytics reporting?
A: No, navigation paths are not directly in reporting with a relational source. You would want to use a DMR source.
Q: Cognos dashboards work well with dimensional databases as shown in the demo. How can we build a similar thing if our data source is relational database? Do we need to engineer data to transform relational data source to start-schema data?
A: Dashboards and reports work fine with both dimensional and relational data sources. Your dashboard source should be as close to a star schema as possible, as should your models. You may require work to handle that.
Q: How do I change the color to red on the -233M? Does Cognos Analytics have a Format Painter tool like in MS Office or dropper like in Report Studio?
A: Unfortunately, you can’t, changing colors is limited to reporting. There is no dropper for format painter available in dashboarding.
Q: Can Cognos dashboard tables be exported into Excel?
A: Dashboarding only allows export to PDF as of 11.1.6.
Q: Is there a concept of filter in Cognos using radio buttons rather than check boxes?
A: Yes, you can filter; however, it is a multi-select checkbox option only.
Q: Can we set defaults for formatting in dashboarding and reports in Cognos?
A: You can set defaults only in reports, not dashboarding.
Q: How can we share the dynamic dashboards with non-Cognos users?
A: You can share a static screenshot of it as a PDF file.
Q: Is there a way to lock Cognos dashboard filters so that users can’t modify them?
A: No, the filters area will be available to all users.
Q: Are there any slicer/filter visualizations in Cognos that can be added to the dashboard?
A: Yes, you can add a data item directly to the canvas and it will act as a slicer.
Q: What is an intersection in Cognos? I’ve only used unions and joins?
A: It’s kind of the opposite of a union – another join type basically.
Q: Can we drag and drop reports into dashboards in Cognos?
A: No, just data items, visualizations or any of the built-in widgets such as web pages, video, etc.
Q: Are there some visualizations that render in HTML fine, but do not render in PDF when used in a Cognos report? We are using Cognos Analytics 11.1.6.
A: Yes, when you look at a visualization in reports it will state what its render outputs are.
Q: Is there a way to set a parameter value without having to select a prompt value in Cognos?
A: Not in dashboarding, but you can in reporting.
Q: Is drill through from the new graphs available in a Cognos report? We have Cognos 11.1.2 and was wondering if it is available in later versions?
A: Drill through from dashboards is available in 11.1.3 and later.
Q: Why do you not use interactive reporting for sorting instead of filters in Cognos during the demo?
A: You would. The demo was to show the conditional logic that is only available in reporting.
Q: Can we embed a report in a dashboard in Cognos?
Q: How can I shared a dashboard with others in Cognos?
A: Dashboards can be shared as a PDF or through Slack as well as embedded in a webpage.
Q: Can we post dashboards to a website?
A: You can.
Q: Do we always need to use visualizations?
A: No. While dashboards offer crosstabs and lists, reports offers even more for non-viz presented data.
Q: Does Senturus offer self-paced Cognos or Tableau self-paced admin courses?
A: We have a full offering of self-paced training for both Cognos and Tableau (and Power BI). We also offer instructor-led, public and private group courses and mentoring. See all our training.
Q: Where can I find a recording of this webinar?
A: On our website at: https://senturus.com/resources/cognos-analytics-dashboards-or-reports/.
Q: We attended the Senturus Cognos Framework Manager vs. Data Modules webinar and would like to view the recording, is that available?
A: Yes, it’s on our website at: https://senturus.com/resources/cognos-framework-manager-vs-data-modules/.
Q: If I take a Senturus Cognos self-paced training class, is the software provided?
A: You will need to provide your own software (Cognos access and/or Tableau/Power BI desktop) for our self-paced courses. However, for our instructor-led online classes we do provide a Cognos instance, but only for the duration of the class.
Welcome to the latest installment of the Senturus Knowledge Series. Today, we’re excited to be presenting to you on the topic of Cognos Analytics dashboards or reports.
We always get the same question early and often throughout the presentation is can I get a copy of the deck? And the answer to that is an unqualified. Yes.
You can either click the link that is now in the chat window of the GoToWebinar control panel or you can head over to the URL on the slide, Senturus.com/resources and visit our Knowledge Center to download the presentation While you’re there.
Make sure you bookmark that, and feel free to explore it as it has literally hundreds of webinars and other excellent business analytics content.
Our agenda today, we will do a couple of brief introductions, we’ll go through dashboarding use case overview, a reporting use case overview, and then you’ll see some demos and comparisons and stick around, as we always have, some great, additional free resources and an overview of Senturus us, for those of you who may not be familiar with what we do.
And then Q and A. Which any questions we haven’t answered during the webinar, we will answer at the end.
So, joining us today, I’m pleased to be joined by my colleague, Patrick Powers, geoscientists, consultant and trainer here at Senturus, bring over 20 years of experience to the table. He has a Tableau certified associate and a Cognos expert whose product experience goes all the way back to version six.
He’s also versed Business Objects and has several certifications, including programming languages, including Java C++, Python, and database certification in Microsoft SQL Server. My name is Michael Weinhauer.
I’m a Director here at Senturus and among my many roles, I have the pleasure of emceeing our Knowledge Series events.
And, as is typical, we like to get sense for our audience here.
So, I’ve launched a poll asking the question, Does your organization currently use dashboards and you can select all that apply here? Are you using dashboards and Cognos or use them in Tableau or, Power BI or a different platform? Or, are you not using dashboards?
So, go ahead and get those answers in.
We’ll give you about a minute to do that. Looks like you guys are all on your toes today. We are about two thirds of you all are already answering.
All right, OK?
Like, 80% participating today, excellent.
All right, I’m going to close this out and share it back.
So, close to 80% in Cognos.
Tableau, 20% Power BI small percentage and different platform and even smaller percentage not doing any dashboarding. So interesting. Thanks for sharing those insights with us.
And with that, I’m going to hand the floor over to Patrick for the part of the presentation. Go ahead, Patrick. Thanks.
Hello, Hello, Hello. Look at this List, 114 of you. I see some familiar names, you all just come, because you like to hear me talk, Gaucho.
You just can’t get enough of hearing me talk. Jeremy, I see you out there.
So today, I want to talk to you about the differences between when should we use a dashboard?
When should we stick with the reporting? That’s, that’s our goal here.
And there really are some very clear times when you should use one or the other. There are some things that just aren’t in dashboarding yet.
And, we just, what’s today is Thursday, I think it was yesterday or Tuesday, we saw what’s coming up in the next release and there’s still a lot of stuff that, you’re not, you’re going to only do it in one versus the other.
There are enhancements in dashboarding in the next release which is one of the reasons why we wanted to revisit this topic.
So, that people know, hey, IBM’s not static on this, they’re not just sitting there twiddling their thumbs obviously but there are definitely still things you can only do in one or the other act.
More importantly, there’s a different target audience for some of these things.
Not everybody needs the same, exact technology, Not everybody should have the exact same technology.
And that’s something that not everybody thinks about.
You gotta remember that, hey, I should be delivering this for this, and this to this.
Get the right thing to the right person.
And so that’s what we’ll want to focus on today.
We’re going to just do a couple of demos.
We’ll have a nice time, and it, I will be looking and watching the questions screen At the same time.
I will be trying keyword to answer questions real time, when, where it’s appropriate, and when possible.
OK, Patrick, we’re not seeing your screen, by the way.
Not sure if you unshared that, but if you can pop that back up, They got into.
Luckily, I hadn’t switched the next slide, yeah, Blame, Mike, everybody. It’s all my fault. All right.
So, we’re going to start off by talking about dashboard use cases, and where’s my mouse?
First and foremost, dashboards are meant to answer questions visually.
Mike, we need to update my thing because I recently have renewed my badges in the Cognos environment.
So, yay, I can add new certified badges to that list.
Things I know how to do.
Whoo, and, yes, as Mike mentioned, I now do R and Python too. So, Yay!
Because I don’t need to sleep like other people.
But I was just doing a class the other day.
And one of the persons came from a very reporting Excel reporting centric background, and they couldn’t understand, why would I ever do something like this? Why shouldn’t I do it in tabular format?
It’s like, that’s not what this is for.
This is specifically for the purpose of displaying data visually, because what it’s about, It’s about making this accessible to any skill level, any user, whether it is the analyst in finance, or whether it’s that manager, who sometimes doesn’t know how to print out a PDF.
How do I convert this to a pin if, OK. We’ve got to be able to get data to all of them It can be as simple or complex as you need as long as it answers the business question, right There’s, there’s the key. Can I answer the business question with this?
Same thing when it comes to interactivity.
How interactive do I want this to be?
Who’s the audience?
Is this the person who likes to push a lot of buttons, or is this the person who just wants to visually see what they need to see and move on with their day?
And that’s, that’s the one thing. And I want you all to be thinking about that today while we’re going through this.
Who is using this? Who am I presenting this to?
Am I giving this to management?
Am I giving this to a technical person?
And we also and I say this in every one of these cognitive related ones, we need to change our mindset.
And remember, reporting is not a 5000 row data dump that you take into Excel.
That’s not dashboarding. That’s not reporting.
But with regard to dashboards, first off, dashboards, where that my mouse keeps you dashboards, can come from any data source.
Whether it’s a framework manager package, whether it’s a custom data module, whether you’ve uploaded it, whether it’s created datasets.
And let’s look at those last two uploaded XLSX or CSV files.
For so many people, that is a game changer for so many of your, of your users, because we need access to data. Now, now, next week, not three months from now, we need access to data.
Now, projects that come from IT do not happen in 32 hours. They happen in 32 months.
So, being able to build something immediately, without an IT person, to be able to make your own data module, or to be able to take it straight from at XLSX file, That’s huge.
That is a big win for these folks.
And you might be thinking, Well, why can’t I do that Reporting, you can.
But, if you’re a non technical user, who’s used to using something like Excel, I can upload it, I can drag it over, and I can have a visual representation of my data in minutes.
There it is.
You can also use multiple data sources and create a single dashboard.
That’s also huge, because, in theory, I could have three different uploaded Excel files. So, here’s my forecast file.
Here’s my actual file, here’s my predictive file and put those all on the same dashboard.
OK, multiple data sources, Single Dashboard.
And, typically, typically, dashboards can be for a single person and, as I just said, they’re looking for immediate answers.
They want to know how to get to something today.
What if you are an older Cognos user?
Not physically older, but version wise older?
Think about things like Workspace or even Query Studio.
All of this modern stuff derived from that, it derived from, how do I get to data quickly?
And Query Studio wasn’t horrible, but it certainly was no dashboards.
It certainly didn’t give us the formatting options.
It certainly didn’t give us some of the ways to distribute like we can today.
And dashboards can be distributed. They can be put out into a public folder, or they can be shared.
They can be exported.
So you’ve got options.
Now, in the current version, which I’ll be using 11.2 today, They are getting very close, Very close, to report it.
Here’s some of the limitations.
I don’t get the same granular control.
And if you are a current report author, and you are used to looking at that properties pane, and you’re used to being able to tweak the heck out of things, like changing how things, process the solve, order, things along those lines, stop there.
Because that’s not who this is meant for.
Same thing with working at the query level itself.
Can’t get in there and work at the query level. Can’t do that.
No joins no unions, no intersections.
What you can do, though, is that you can build these things in a data module and then use that data module in dashboarding.
So there’s still a way to do it, just not directly in there.
The biggest hurdle, I think, for most folks, is while there is the ability to do filtering and interactive filtering, there’s no direct prompts. There’s no prompt page.
That is probably the biggest deal breaker.
But remember, if I’m using this to find a quick answer, or if I’m using this as a starting point to delve deeper into data, then I can work around that.
Same thing for macros, for security. All app being able to use certain prompt macros, things like that. They’re not there.
There are a few less formatting options, this is the one area where, with each version, they’re adding more and more options, which I think is great.
OK, they’re bringing more and more into the tool as far as being able to format things, but there’s still more in reporting than there is in Dashboard.
Now, before I get to the demos, I want to now talk about. When would I use the report?
Reporting is typically more targeted, and this is where I need to give a lot of information, whether it’s a single page or whether it’s multiple pages, I’m typically going to be using a report.
The bigger thing, though, it’s not you it’s not always going to be visual.
I’ve got lists, I’ve got cross tabs, got repeaters. I’ve got Singleton’s so I’ve got all these additional ways of displaying.
Primarily, everything in dashboarding is a visualization. Yes, you can do cross tabs.
You can sort of do lists, but not in the same way.
Because when you build a report, odds are, you’re looking to distribute that report.
And this is where reports are going to shine.
They are meant for mass distribution.
They’re meant for more complex data sources, like being able to put in raw SQL, which everybody, anybody who has ever taken one of my classes knows how I feel about putting raw SQL into reporting.
But you can do it.
Then there’s things like joins, unions, intersections, advanced case statements, all those programmatic things that you need to do to work around your data sources.
Those can all be done in Reporting.
So now we’re looking at two different options to different ways. I’m going to do two Dashboard Demos.
I’m going to do three Report Demos.
And then I’m going to give you some more final, look at these things. Before I go on so far. There haven’t been any questions.
So that means either nobody’s paying attention, or I’m just so awesome. There we go.
Thank you Kayla. Kayla asks, is there any recommendations for making reports available via mobile?
one of the nice things about dashboards is that it does automatically resize and it does automatically adjust. But a lot of times, you have to really think about the layout and the design for a mobile device. Because when you say mobile, there’s going to be a big difference between what you designed for a phone versus what you designed for 11 inch tablet. Right?
So dashboarding does lend itself well to mobile delivery. Because it does, readjusted, does resize things like that.
I’m going to hold any comments on the Mobile app itself.
I don’t want to say anything at this point, because, you know, I don’t want to put my foot in my mouth if I’m saying something out of turn here.
The next question, is there a way to run a government report, an auto loaded into Data Modules dataset? Not that I am aware of, Penny.
Now, if there is one, and somebody else knows, please tell me, but I am not a wave aware of anything.
Francis, tell you, I feel that using SQL, the issue with using SQL and reports, is that it usually comes down to that there is needs, there needs to be work done to your framework Manager model. Typically, if somebody’s putting SQL into their actual report, it’s because they’re working around a transactional data source versus a dimensional data source.
And transactional data sources are not good for reporting period regardless of tool. Whether it’s Cognos, Power BI, Tableau, you don’t want to use a transactional data source, because you end up with things like nulls or cross joints or just nightmare things where you have to do these really nasty SQL statements. So if I see somebody putting sequel into their report, that tells me that they are probably try to use a transactional source and that they should step back and they should be looking at their source systems and they should be looking at their models.
DMR, in conjunction with dashboards, it’s a DMR package, I can use DMR in dashboarding.
No issue there.
And Hong, as you just heard, I don’t prefer SQL.
I think sequel should be avoided.
OK, I will show you ROM. I will show you what you can export. The question was, can dashboards we export to PDF and drill through is I’m actually going to show a drill through?
Stan, you bring up a good question and I want to touch on it because I think it’s important to what we’re talking about today. Stan asks, Will the ability to upload files ever be automated? I can’t say never, ever because I’m not IBM, I don’t know.
Know what they’re going to, what they’re going to do.
However, the intent of uploading files is meant to be a way for people to get to data today.
But the reality is, is that you should also be figuring out a long term strategy to get that data into your data warehouse or into your, your process flow. Because there’s no guarantee that an uploaded file is going to be cleansed, that it’s going to have proper validation, et cetera.
So one of the reasons why it’s not automated is so that people don’t use it as an end all be all solution.
In reality, you should be using it to identify missing areas of your overall data structure, and you should be putting together a plan that says, OK, hey, Donna, in Finance, I know you need to upload this forecast file this month, But we’ll go ahead, and we’ll make sure that this data moving forward is in the data warehouse, and it’ll be in your regular packages.
That that’s a little better way to do it.
And I’m going to jump down a real quick, Mike.
I am aware of the rest API.
I wasn’t aware of Jupiter ability to do it, but I still would not recommend that you use it as an end all be all solution.
I would still recommend that people look at that as an opportunity to improve what’s in their overall data warehouse, relying on uploaded files, is going to bite you at some point, and I think everybody can agree on that.
We want to make sure that we’re looking at it in the bigger. So, again, I got a second question of drills, viewers, and dashboards. Yes, I will show you how to do a drill through.
Jeff is asking the recommended tool for ad hoc reporting.
That is the successor to Cognos workspace to query Studio for some people, because with the preview mode of the reporting tool these days, I can do ad hoc reporting straight in the reporting tool.
The components of both Query Studio and Report Studio are combined into a single tool, OK, Penny.
Drill through 11.1 point 7. It should absolutely be 11.1 point 7. I think they introduced that 11.1 point 3.
So, yeah, there shouldn’t be any issue there.
All right, so the only one I didn’t, I missed, right, there was the 503 area, from Re on.
I’m not sure what’s going on, I would have to take more time to really think about that and see why you’re having an issue.
But there you go.
I think I got everybody covered.
Ron, if you’re saying, is there a limit validation of the visualizations and a dashboard?
I would recommend that you read Stephen Few book, Information Dashboard Design, and I would recommend that you take a look at what makes a good dashboard, Because if you’re asking, How many can I put in there, you’ll probably have one that’s too crowded.
OK, again, let’s get on to the demos.
Thank you all for those questions.
I will come back to those.
The book is by Stephen Few, Information Dashboard Design.
See if I can get that up here really fast.
That is considered the de facto book, as far as we’re all concerned in this industry, when it comes to duty to do right there, information dashboard, design by Stephen Few.
OK, I do have to state for reasons that I am personal, friend, Steve. As a personal friend, no, I don’t get any money for hawken’s books.
OK, if I did, I certainly wouldn’t be doing these webinars OK.
There’s the link to the book oh, sorry, I sent that to the wrong person. Sorry. I meant to put it in the chat window. I put it in the question window. There we go.
All right, I’ll come back to the questions in a minute.
Let me jump to the demos.
Let’s does dashboard demo first?
Any made too many windows open? There we go.
So here I am at 11.2, for those of you who haven’t seen an 11.2.
Things look a little different, not a whole lot, but. Oh. Look. Now we have a hamburger.
Yes, that is the official name of that. It’s a hamburger.
We’ve got a hamburger in there.
I’m going to go ahead, I’m going to do a new dashboard.
I’m just going to build a pretty straightforward, simple dashboard, and I want you to think about this.
Again, in terms of the kind of user this is meant for.
Real quick, I want to circle back to Kayla, to your question, look at some of the templates that we can use here.
The infographic templates are literally meant for mobile delivery and for scrolling on it, on a side screen.
So, this really is what they had in mind. In some respects.
I’m going to use the free form template.
Now, before I add a data source, let’s take a look at the properties of the canvas.
So, something that’s been coming up and I’m seeing it here, yeah, I’m, I’m seeing some of the questions come through.
One of the best pieces of advice I can give you. Turn this on the FITT page.
Just right out of the gate, before you start building anything turn on fit page.
This helps so much with auto sizing and auto resizing.
Yeah, you can use the presets, yeah, you can say at a manual width or height, but you know what, I’m lazy, I clicked the FITT page button.
Then you’ve got things like show the Grid’s, Snap to Grid, et cetera.
But this one, this one right here.
This is the best habit you can get into click the FITT page.
Let’s add a source.
Boo, your friend and mine.
Go sales query.
We all know Argos sales query that way to expand our products or sales, I’m going to expand our products.
Here is where the difference between reporting and dashboards is really, really underlined.
All I need to do is literally drag this over.
If you can use a mouse, you can build a dashboard and that’s not hyperbole there and I really can all I have to do is drag over revenue and, oh, look, it gives me a visual representation, OK?
Any skill level, any skill level can handle that and if I want more objects on here, Okey-dokey.
Oh, look. Now I’ve got order type on here.
And I’m going to go and I’m going to throw. what am I going to Throw in that gross profit of that?
Oh, look, now I’ve built two visualizations in seconds.
Notice me resizing them.
Notice that it gives me information 50.1 50. I’m going to take this one and I’m going to align it right up with that.
Boom, how’s that?
Let’s take a look at some of the formatting I can do with this.
So I’m going to click on this one here. I’m going to go to Properties.
I’m going to go to General Property.
I can start changing things. I can change the fill color.
I can change the border color.
I can change the title. Now one thing that is nice that they’ve added is this smart title.
I can either have a smart title, where it looks at the fields I’ve added, or I can do Accustom title.
For those of you who have packages that don’t have well defined names, and you know who you are, OK?
Custom title is your way to go.
It was when I switched to a custom title.
Now I can edit this text.
So I can say order method, gross profit.
And I can change the alignment. I can change the font size, I can do all sorts of nifty things.
Because I’m nifty.
Same thing over here, 14 centered product line revenue.
Yay, me. I’m awesome.
I can also start changing the axes All right, right now. Why do I need to say order, method and product line? When I say ended up here? I don’t.
So, I can come in here and I can turn off the access title.
I can also turn off the Value access title, if I want to. look at that.
Same thing here.
Boom, the wrong one.
Boom, you come back, there we go.
And, and I can start having some fun with this, OK, You can start Changing the font size, you can rotate these things. I can format this data. I can style this text.
Look at, that, I can change it to black 14 point.
OK, cherry cream soda, wow, that looks horrible.
Yeah, let’s go at that. Oh, look at that fancy.
So I can do all sorts of different things with this Restore it back to default, I could even rotate this text if I wanted to.
I could rotate this text.
Now, one question that came through, can you sort the X axis using another column? Now you’re starting to get into things that need to be in reporting.
So, that’s, that’s when you start getting into that reporting world.
Remember, this is meant for the donnas in HR that are not always technical folks, but they need to get this data, and they know enough, And, here you go.
This is what we’re looking at.
My mouse, my mouse is just not playing nice today.
There. I can, I can rotate this, I can make it staggered.
Let me rotate these both.
And I can change up how these are shown.
So if I go to Fields and I go here and I format this.
Currency abbreviate look at that.
Same thing over here.
Save myself, some room, All right, we’re going to bring good here.
Then I’m going to throw them 1 last 1 on here.
I’m going to fill this up.
I’m going to start straight from a visualization, and I’m just going to throw a data player on here.
From time, I’m going to throw year on here.
And I’m going to go into preview mode.
And there you go.
I built a dynamic dashboard in minutes.
Think about the skill sets of your users in your organization.
Think about the persons that you would be giving this to.
That was not very technical.
That was not very tricky.
You know, I’m going to do real quick, because I’m going to add a little border to this. Let’s go ahead, and let’s add a little border.
Let’s, let’s make some happy trees here, chalet!
Look at that, some happy trees, and let’s give it a title.
Now, one thing that I would recommend that you all start getting in the habit of doing, when you’ve completed a dashboard, don’t take what you see on the screen as how it’s going to look to a user.
I’m currently running a 1920 by 10 80, I normally run in 38 40 by 21 60.
You want to make sure that you get out of edit mode.
Now I see how it’s truly going to be resized. Now I see how it’s going to look to my users. Did I miss the border on that.
And I can see that, hey, I missed the border on that one because apparently, I’m an idiot.
Do I have a border? Still not giving me the border on that one, that’s weird!
Yes, now I’m happy.
There we go!
Dashboards are interactive. If I click on one of these bars, notice that this updates.
If I click here, notice that this updates.
by default they are linked together.
And I’m going to answer John’s question June I just did a freeform.
OK I did a freeform on this.
But yes you can explicitly, you can explicitly set size, width heights, axes, things like that.
I just did it as a freeform, while I’m here. Let’s take a look at the share option.
So I can export to PDF.
Ah, everybody likes a good …, I can send it out, I can include any currently applied filters. Now, I’m not doing any filtering so there’s no clear all filter, Jeremy because there’s no filters on here.
And if I had it saved, I can create a shared link, are the properties on the data player to Richard’s question.
Let’s take a look. I don’t know if they’ve added a property for that.
I mean I can do it automatic refresh on the visualization itself, but that’s for the data, not for the timing.
I do not believe that there is a property on this for speeding it up.
Rick, your question about multi tabs? Yeah.
If there are multi tabs and I go to publish it, they’re going to see both tabs.
I’m trying to go through the quick ones. Lakshmi, yes, the recording that one has already answered, Mike, Thank you.
Now, half of what you’re asking nor as possible, the dashboard can be set to auto refresh, but not auto, I have to schedule it.
But if I look at the entire dashboard properties, this is refreshing the entire dashboard.
All right, let me go down to the next one, and then I’ll go back to questions later.
So, I’m going to create a second one.
And I want to focus on something here.
Dashboards are meant for targeted audiences.
Let that sink in for a second.
That’s one of the big reasons for doing this, is that we want to make a dashboard for a specific group. So, I’m going to pick this one right here.
The 4 by 1.
Because I’m going to make one that is specific for folks in a finance group, I want a top level financial dashboard.
First thing I’m going to do, because you all, I’ve been paying attention.
That’s right, I’m going to fit page, going to get that page fit.
Still going to use Go sales query.
Because after 24.5 years of using it, I know it in my sleep, sadly.
Again, the simplistic way of doing this, Boom.
Boom, look at how easy that is.
Look at how straightforward that is.
I can save it as a pit if Natalie, I’m sorry, Natalya, I can save it as a PDF.
I’m just having fun with that word today. But not as Excel. That’s where you start moving into reporting.
But, you know what I need on here? I need a calculated field. And, yes, I can build one.
I love, I love this ellipsis. I really do because you expect to find a lot of things under this ellipsis.
Nope. That’s it.
I’m hoping they have plans to put more things under that ellipsis, but for right now, now, that’s it, because, you know.
So, I’m going to drag over revenue minus planned revenue.
Now, just before anybody asks, yes, I can still use functions, I can still use the same things I would see in reporting. It is not a 100% match. There are some that are not in here. Know, off the top of my head I can’t tell you exactly which ones but it is not a complete list.
But a validate that I’m going to do OK and I’m going to put my variants in my last one.
Look at that, Tata.
There are certain things that can be done in groups.
There are certain things that you have to do individually.
Now, border color normally would work on all of them. Thank you.
But, if I want to change the format, I gotta do them one at a time.
So, I gotta do them all one at a time. I gotta come through.
Change the format here, but it’s not. It’s not horrible. OK, it’s not.
It takes a second to go through these.
Change them so that they all look the same, that they’re all using the same thing of US dollar.
Quantity can stay the way it is.
Actually, I’ll, I’ll abbreviate quantity just to make it consistent.
US dollar currency symbol.
Come back here.
Format data, number abbreviate.
There we go.
So, what about the lower half? What are we going to do in the lower half? I said this is for finance folks.
So, I’m going to give them what they want.
I’m going to put a cross tab down here.
We all know that they love their cross tabs, so let’s give the people what they want.
Put gross profit in for the values.
Product line for the columns.
Sales Region for the Rose.
Well, bam, Come back here, its properties must set my Column width.
Bama enough to carry out.
Look at that.
Well, that’s fine and dandy, but how does that really get somebody excited about using a visualization?
Well, I’m glad you asked to me.
What if we were to take this?
And we were, too.
Add some conditional colors.
I’m going to add some rules.
I’m going to say if it is less than.
If it is less than, What do I want today? I want $10 million, three.
Oh, that’s going to be red. And that’s going to have A that’s going to have a frowny face.
If it is greater than 3, 1, 2, 3.
Well, that’s going to be green.
That’s going to get a smiley face.
OK, yay, us.
Then, I put it in one too many zeros.
Let’s try that again.
1, 2, 3, 1, 2, 3, there we go.
Then my last rule, OK, If it is greater than, what I say, on that first 1, 10, it’s greater than 10.
And it’s less than 50.
Well, then it’s going to be orange.
And it’s going to get that.
So there we go.
Pretty neat, right?
So I could have done that via percentages, which would have made it more dynamic if it’s in the bottom 10 or in the top 10.
So I can have it data driven in that respect, answering both Jeremy and Joe’s question at the same time there. So you can do it via percentage versus a hard coded number, So you get more of a dynamic color coding.
I just wanted you all to see, nice, little happy smiley faces.
Does everybody see? happy smiley faces, right?
All right, last thing I’m going to do here.
I’m going to go ahead, and, I’m going to set this.
I’m going to give this a background color. See, that’s where you’re being done today.
Do it in the background, color on all of them.
Because you hate me, apparently.
The data, that window in 245.
This is the last one I’m doing here. Then we’re jumping into reporting.
There we go. We’ve got something nice, but now somebody’s going to say, but what about drill through Ag?
So, the whole point of this is to be able to start here.
We want to start here, right?
I can click on this, and I can define a drill through definition.
And let’s make sure I’ve got the report, I need, I do, I’ve got the detailed report.
OK, that one does have a year parameter, so let me throw a filter on here.
So the first thing I’m going to do to make sure that it passes what I want, is I am going to add a year filter to this.
I’m going to just pick a year.
Now, when I define my drill through.
It look, it finds via your parameter, it passes my year value. Now, notice that here, unlike Reporting, I do have one option.
I can set it to just be a drill through on this viz a drill through on all phases with the same connection or all visits on the Dashboard.
OK, so I’ve got some options. So all of you are asking about Drill through Penny and a couple others.
Here you go.
So now, when I go back to my preview mode, and I look at this like a user, when I click on that, I’ve got to drill through.
I’ve drilled through to a detailed report. This is the proper use of dashboarding.
This is the proper use, being able to start at this high level and drill through to that detail.
And Jeff, I have not seen any major issues with drill through myself personally.
I have not seen any, I haven’t had any issues.
They tell they typically work just like they worked here for me today.
But then, again, you know, I’m also working with Go sales query, OK, all right, so what’s the difference between this, and data, and reporting?
Well, first off, let’s take a look at this.
Can I create a dashboard style report? Absolutely.
Why would I do that?
What if I want to mass distribute this.
What if I want to jump into Excel?
What if I want to have more options for printing it out things along those lines?
So I care.
Make a dashboard style report.
So take a look at this two rows, two columns. Put a table in there. I’m going to take these first two. I’m going to merge them together.
Here’s the things I can’t do in Dashboard N is easy. I just took these two top tables, and I merged them together.
I’m going to throw a cross tab into this one, and I’m going to throw a visualization into this one.
And I’m going to set this to the same query.
All right, So again, working with queries now, working with data along those lines. But now I’m going to show you something really fun.
So for this, some of the throw product line here.
And I’m going to throw year.
And for my measure, I’m going to do revenue.
Come over here.
Go into use.
Sales region for the category.
And I’ll use revenue as the value.
Straightforward, simple, etcetera.
Question was asked earlier, what should I use for ad hoc reporting, and well reporting gives me the option of looking at page design, or page preview.
So when I go to Page Preview, there’s my ad hoc reporting.
So I can see this in an ad hoc way, in here, in this tool, and still have the ability to use all of the things, like the Properties pane, everything else that I would have.
But here I’m going to show you one little funnel.
I’m going to take this, and in this same cell, go to my toolbox, I’m going to throw out another visualization.
I’m going to use one of the original charts.
I’m going to use a micro chart.
So here I’ve got this cool, little micro chart.
Set it to query one.
And I’m going to put Product Line as my category, I’m going to put.
Gross Profit is my measure.
What I want, Sometimes, I might actually pay attention to what I’m doing year on year, and their logic that your friend.
Throw a year in there.
I got this cute little line right here. Right.
Wouldn’t it be nice if this line was on each row?
Somebody tell me that it would be nice. That would be nice, wouldn’t it?
Yeah, that’s true.
Well, guess what I’m going to do, I’m going to unlock my report.
I’m going to drag that into the row.
I’m going to drag that into the row.
Now, I can set a master detail on this.
Product line. The product line.
It’s too small of courses.
But I now have an embedded master detail, which apparently, it does not like today.
See if I can change the chart type.
Look at that.
So on each row, I’ve got a little chart.
Last thing I want to do is I’m going to go to my toolbox.
When I got a prompt in, I’m going to throw a value prompt up here into this first row.
Call it the region parameter.
Here’s my sales region code.
Picked my value to display.
I’ve gotta be careful when you’re working in preview mode, Gang.
And I’m going to set this too, optional, auto samit Yeah?
Select this one.
Filters, Filters, optional.
Filters, Optional check Senator that.
Let’s run this.
Now, I’ve got a nice dashboard style.
But I was able to do things like lock, and unlock. I was able to do a master detail. I was able to put a dynamic prompt on here.
These are the things that are not in Dashboard.
These are the big issues.
All right, 1 last one, because I don’t want Mike to freak out. I want to show you one last quick thing here. one of the other big issues is doing things.
At the query level.
Yeah, doing things at the query level, here’s what I don’t have.
Don’t have this in dashboarding being able to come in here.
And create something here at the query level.
Yeah, so let’s throw a list on here.
Let’s go back to our query.
And I want to create a join.
Can’t do this.
Cannot do this in dashboarding, just the way it is. So if I go to Query two.
Throw order number in there.
Yeah, I’m going to create a product.
So I’m doing.
Some basket analysis here basically.
So now I’m going to go query three.
And Inquiry three, I’m going to put order number.
Quantity in revenue.
I’m going to come back here into my queries and I’m going to join these on order number.
So now I’m able to do this Join.
I’m going to set the cardinality to 1 to 1.
So what I’m basically going to filter that one by this one.
I’m going to filter this by this.
Pretty neat stuff.
You cannot do stuff like this in Dashboard. And I got three minutes.
I come here?
Oh, my god.
Oh, idiot, query on. Take off.
Page, this drop that in now, I’ve got a list, I’ve got this set up.
I’m going to group order. So I can’t do things like manually grouping.
Sorting is not always so easy and straightforward.
Is work because I’ve got two minutes to go, I’m going to pick Behr Edge.
And now I’ve got Adjoined Report based on two separate queries.
Each one of these shows only orders that have Behr Edge, plain and simple.
So those are the kinds of things that I can’t do in dashboarding yet. So let’s switch back to the actual presentation.
If there are similarities, why use one?
Again, more granularity like you just saw, advanced scheduling options are not available in dashboarding.
The prompt is like I just showed you.
I can make reports look like dashboards but the report gives me more control.
I gotta do it in reporting still.
Plain and simple.
259, I can’t get any closer, Mike take it away.
Thanks for giving me a whole sixty seconds to go through the last six slides, Patrick. I appreciate it.
Thank you, Patrick. Stick around for a couple of minutes. folks got some great resources here. I didn’t neglect to mention at the beginning that we do record all of these webinars.
Most of you know that already, but you can go up to our resources page and you’ll find a recording for this and many other webinars that we have along with unbiased product reviews, technical tips, and our excellent blog, among other things.
Some great resources that are specific to dashboard reporting.
If you go to the next slide, we got to on-demand webinars, you can see their reporting tools feature, set comparison, and how to successfully implement self-service analytics, And we offer training, of course, many of those courses led by Mister Powers himself.
Here, we offer dashboards, explorations and stories, private or self-paced and professional report authoring, advanced, again, either private or self-paced, terms of upcoming events.
We’ve got two, we do all of our webinars mostly at the same time on Thursdays here, 11 0 AM Pacific 2, 0 PM Eastern.
We’ve got one for eliminating manual Cognos products, Audits, Radically streamline Your Migrations, where we’re going to do a demonstration and presentation on our migration assistant tool, and then … will be back on October 14th with using Python, with Power BI.
Real quickly, about Senturus, we concentrate our expertise on business intelligence for the depth knowledge across the entire BI Stack.
Senturus, as our clients know us for providing clarity from the chaos of complex business requirements, disparate data sources, and constantly moving targets. We’ve made a name for ourselves because of our strength: Bridging the gap between IT and business users.
We deliver solutions that give you access to reliable, analysis, ready data across your organization, enabling you to quickly and easily get answers, at the point of impact, in the form of the decisions you make, and the actions you take.
Our consultants, as you can see here, are leading experts in the field of analytics with years of Pragmatic, real-world expertise and experience advancing.
The state-of-the-art are so confident in our team, and our methodology that we back our projects with a 100% money back guarantee, and it’s unique in the industry.
We do offer a full spectrum of training. I alluded to training earlier specific to this webinar. Or, we offer training across all the three major platforms that we support, Power BI Tableau and Cognos Analytics. And all the various modalities that you might need in your organizations.
From tailored group sessions to small group mentoring, instructor led online courses, and self paced e-learning are ideal for organizations running multiple platforms, Or those moving from one to another.
We provide training in these different modes, and can mix and match to meet the needs of your business community.
We’ve been doing this for awhile. We know at it for over 20 years and we’ve worked across the spectrum from Fortune 500 clients down to the mid-market, solving business problems across virtually every industry. And many functional areas, including the Office finance, sales, and marketing, manufacturing, operations, HR, and IT team as both large enough to meet all of your business analytics needs to get small enough to provide personalized attention.
If you’re interested and feel you would make a good Senturian, we are hiring. We’ve got several positions open there. You can head over to Senturus.com URL there, or e-mail us at [email protected]
We’re out of time today, but Patrick answered most if not all the questions in line. So if you do have another question or want to talk to us, feel free to e-mail us at [email protected], and we’ll set up a free consultation.
We appreciate you taking time out of your busy day to spend time with us today. Thank you to Patrick for a great presentation.
And if you want to reach out to us for any business analytics needs, you can see our e-mail there again, [email protected], or if you actually still pick up a phone anymore, call us at 888-601-6010.
Thanks again for your time, everyone. And we look forward to seeing you on the Next Knowledge Series event.
Great! Yeah, we’ll post answers to questions we didn’t get to along with the recording and the deck on our website.