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Have you ever wanted to share a report between several different people or companies, but wanted the report to only display data for that specific person or company?  This can be tricky with a multi company or multi person database.  However there is an easy way to do this, and it's not coping and pasting the report for each company/user.

There are 2 steps to do this.

The first step is easy.  When creating the SRS report, create a person or company parameter, just a normal text field parameter.  This will be the parameter be used to set which specific person/company the report will be for.  It would probably be a good idea to use a different naming convention for this parameter, to specify that it as a default parameter, like default_user.  Then finish creating the report and onto the next step!

The second step is to change your code where you set/send the report parameters to the SSRSPHP library.  All you have to do is check if the parameter name is equal to one of the default parameters and hide the parameter from the user when setting the parameter.  Then when the report is being submitted, all you have to do is set the parameter before sending it to the SSRSPHP library to retrieve the report.

The code to do this would look something like this:

ssrs

Now the user won't be able to change or even see the parameter.  This is pretty good, but if we want to add more default parameters this isn't a very elegant solution.  Instead we can put all the default parameters into an array and check if the default parameter exists in the array.  This way in order to add more parameters, all we have to do is change an array

The code to do this would look something like this:

ssrs 1

To the user it will seem like nothing has happened, but we have effectively limited the user to see the report data that we want them to see without having to create separate reports for each company or person.

By: Dustin Yee, Application Developer, , WebSan Solutions Inc., a Canadian Certified Microsoft Partner

Published in Uncategorized
Wednesday, 21 December 2011 16:27

SSRS Reports in Dynamics GP

For some of the more technical Microsoft Dynamics GP users, you may want a little more control and customization when reporting on your GP data.  SmartLists provide a fairly quick and dynamic option to custom reporting, but they may not be visually satisfying.  On the other hand, integrating BI360 with GP will allow you create very clean and organized reports in an Excel-like environment, but won’t give you that rudimentary control that your technical mind may crave.  If you’re looking for some sort of middle ground between these two options, take a look at SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) for Dynamics GP.

The key to creating effective SSRS reports is having a good knowledge of SQL – or at the very least, a fairly strong knowledge of databases.  This is what scares away some users, but for those that have this type of background, SSRS Reports could be your salvation in the pursuit of both visually appealing and fully customizable reports.

While SSRS Reports can be easily viewed within Dynamics GP, they are created in Microsoft Report Builder – a separate software program that is offered for free by Microsoft.  Using Report Builder allows you to take a custom SQL query that you have created (either from scratch or by using Report Builder’s intuitive Query Designer) and turn it into an appealing report.  With the ability to easily create tables, charts, and even visual scales/gauges, you can turn a simple list of data into a work of art!

If you have SSRS Reports deployed in your GP environment, you can view them by going into any series and selecting the “Reporting Services Reports” item in the Navigation Pane.

[caption id="attachment_674" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="SSRS Reports in Dynamics GP"]SSRS Reports in Dynamics GP[/caption]

By: Rahim Jiwani, Application Specialist, WebSan Solutions Inc.

Published in WebSan Blog

If you're a business owner and frequent user of Dynamics GP, you might think, "I have a lot of data in my Dynamics GP system. I need to analyze my data, extract a new knowledge from it and make decisions based on this analysis. I want to see  the KPI of my business in real time mode to drive my business better. I want to have a tool which will help me see hidden trends in my business and industry...". If you already have these thoughts, there's good news - the Business Intelligence technologies (BI) will help you.

Basically, you need to have three things:

  1. The data warehouse. It is a special data base which has a star-schema data model (info cubes). Also, this database is in read-only mode for users and it is optimized for reporting and multidimensional analysis.
  2. Extraction, loading and transformation  process (ELT) which loads your data from OLTP system like Dynamics GP to your data warehouse. Generally speaking this ELT process "cleans", transforms and loads your daily operation data from Dynamics GP into your data warehouse.
  3. Tools to create analytical reports and KPIs based on data from your data warehouse.

There are alot of BI tools which can help you to create a whole process of these 1-2-3 steps. However, if you have ERP based on MS SQL Server (i.e. Dynamics GP - you have a simple way of studying the system and pretty powerful BI tool right out from the box! It is SQL Server Reporting Service (SSRS) which actually is the part of MS SQL Server installation.

So, let's see what SSRS can provide you:

  • Simple access to your Dynamics GP database and use it as a data warehouse, you just need to write a bunch of SQL-statements and SSRS will transform on the fly the results of these queries to BI reports
  • Loading and analyzing data from MS Analysis Services which is more powerful solution to build data warehouse from Microsoft
  • Special tool for building in drag-n-drop mode you BI reports - Report Builder 2.0 It is free and can be downloaded from Microsoft site
  • Creating beautiful graphic dash-boards with KPI's in Report Builder 2.0
  • Different filters for your BI reports
  • Access to your reports, dash-boards and KPIs via Web, you can see all your BI stuff just in your internet browser
  • Generating your BI reports in off-line mode and sending them via e-mail on a schedule. (Do you want to see some daily reports every morning in your inbox? No problem, SSRS will do it for you. Just create your reports in Report Builder, then publish and schedule them)
  • Integration with your MS Share Point portal, yes you will be able to build reports and analyze data right in your portal
  • Built in export of reports to Word, Excel, PDF and TIFF-format

MS SQL Server Reporting is very simple for installation and studying. You could get BI tool and start analyze your data in Dynamics GP in two or three days. Simple, powerful and ready for use right out from the box.

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP