It is one thing to build report generator software, but it’s another thing to create software that is intuitive, functional, and effective. There’s no shortage of software that generates reports. From Crystal Reports to SSRS and everything else in between, there are plenty of tools for businesses to not only format their data but generate and view it.
In this 2 part blog:Part 1 "DOs"
- Allow For Both Ad Hoc and Scheduled Report Generation
- Web Based Interface Is A Necessity
- Be Scalable
- Must Be Compatible
- Never Be Rigid And Non- Adaptable
- Don't Sunset Platforms Too Soon
- Don't Forget About Design
- Never Assume That Every User Is An Expert
4 Business Software “DOs”
Allow for both Ad Hoc and Scheduled Report generation
Some report generator software is great at automating reports, while others are excellent at On Demand report generation. The reality is that most firms want both. The business’ demands can often differ from department to department. For example, the sales team prefers to generate their revenue reports on an ad hoc basis, while the accounts department would rather their credit limit notification reports to be sent automatically to clients. Finding software that can accommodate both needs is the key to satisfying all of your stakeholder's requirements.
Web Based interface is a necessity
With just about every tech firm pushing the “cloud” concept, and every business moving to mobile solutions, more than ever report generator software needs to have a web based interface. A “thick client” can be just as important, however, businesses require systems that they can access anywhere from any machine. This interface should also accommodate ad hoc report generation as well as scheduled reporting.
Businesses of varying sizes have different needs. Moreover, these businesses may adopt a lower end system in the beginning but will eventually find themselves requiring a more robust system within 2-5 years. Report generator software needs to be able to grow as the company it inhabits grows. Features such as disaster recovery and failover may not be required for smaller reporting volumes. However, this changes as the business grows so does the number of reports and the number of users who rely on these reports, making scalability a key decision making factor.
Must Be compatible
Report generation software needs to work with a variety of different environments and systems. Every business is different, using different software and tools to complete their objectives. Report generator software must be compatible with not only latest Windows Server edition, but be compatible with other Windows operating systems such as Windows 7. Business Intelligence reporting software needs to have the forethought to work towards being compatible with soon coming operating systems such as Windows 8. Report generator software should also be prepared to work with ERP systems that generate reports such as Lawson, or BMC software packages. This ensures that no matter the system the business uses or moves towards, their reporting infrastructure will require no alteration. This keeps costs low as well!