Organizations rely on accurate and timely information to make informed business decisions, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 includes a powerful reporting engine for report generation. Traditionally, the generation of reports is the responsibility of a system user and they were run upon request or at a particular day, date, or time. How about a situation where a sales manager may want to track on a weekly basis the changes in the sales pipeline? Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 provides the solution by allowing users to schedule reports at predetermined time intervals.
At the heart of this operation is the reporting engine: Microsoft SQL Server reporting services combined with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Report Scheduling feature. The report scheduling provides the ability to take snapshots of the reports or, in other words, records the state of the data within Microsoft CRM at a specific point in time.
How can snapshot reports be useful? Let’s go back to our sales manager who would like to track on a weekly basis the progress of the sales pipeline and compare it to a previous week. Simply running the sales pipeline report on demand weekly will produce a different set of data each time, while a snapshot report allows for comparisons.
The CRM scheduling wizard allows for reports to be run and for the reports to be delivered via email to specified users. This functionality may be utilized either once or on a scheduled hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly timeframe. Report snapshots are created on the Reporting Services Report Server (RSSS) without user interaction. When the report is scheduled the necessary parameters are provided and are used each time as a new snapshot is produced.
Email delivery of reports is not done from within Microsoft Dynamics CRM but on the report server itself. Reports can be emailed to both Microsoft CRM and non CRM users in several different formats (PDF, Word, Excel, etc.). Consider getting more out of your reporting data by contacting The TM Group today at [email protected] or
Kevin Alexander, The TM Group