Call it self-service reporting or ad-hoc reporting, but the bottom line is that more and more business users are asking for access to corporate data so that they can build their own reports or modify existing operational reports. In a recent webcast, we reviewed the drivers for self-service reporting and how ActiveReports Server with its web-based report designer add-on can help. Over a couple of sessions, we reached an audience who were very interested in self-service reporting. We started with a bit of theory about what self-service reporting is and why it is important in today's business environment. To keep things interactive without boring everyone with my monologue, we ran through a few audience polls to understand the key drivers of self-service reporting, how it is currently implemented, and what someone looks for in a self-service reporting solution. We spent some time introducing ActiveReports Server and the web-based report designer add-on, and then launched right into the live demos. In this webcast, we focused on how a business user would use the ActiveReports Server report portal through "a day in the life of an account manager." We created a new report with a table, grouping, and filters using the web-based report designer. We scheduled the report for delivery via email. All of this was achieved without writing a single line of SQL or code! We also looked at the intelligence behind the web-based report designer add-on, i.e. the Data Model technology. We saw how it helps to make the the designer intelligent, intuitive and something that an average business user would "like" to use rather than something that pushes him away. We saw how Models help to transform the technical data structures and DB schema into something that represents the business data in a structure familiar to the average end user. We ended with a Q&A round where I answered all the questions from our attentive audience. The audience was a mix of existing customers and new people evaluating ActiveReports. The questions ranged from licensing to data sources to charting capabilities built into the report designer. At your leisure, you can review the webcast on demand using the link below:
As always, we look forward to your comments and feedback to help us plan for future webinar content as well as direction for our overall product road map. You can reach us through email, forums, twitter (@activereports) or any of the other social media channels mentioned in our Contact Us page.