Working with User-Defined Reports

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User defined reports are easier to create than cards and labels, because all fields appear on the same line (with the exception of Roster reports, which are formatted like labels). However, you have some additional options with reports, because each field has a "header" at the top of the column that normally contains the field name.

This is a large Help topic. It is divided into three sections:

Adding a User Defined Report - Explains how to get started.
Using the Define Fields Tab - Explains how to use the first tab page of the main report definition window to give the report a name, title, and a set of fields to display.
Using the Preview Tab - Explains how to preview the report and adjust column widths


Adding a User-Defined Report

The first thing to do is tell the system what kind of report you want to create. This will determine the fields that can be added to the report, and how the report will behave.

1Choose File > Workspace > Reports.
2Choose Actions > User Reports, or click the User Reports toolbar button to open the Maintain User Reports window.  This window displays all user-defined reports that are currently available.
3Click Add to open the Report Type selection window.


4The Data Type and Report Type form the basis of the report. Once set, these cannot be changed.

 Data Type - This should be the primary focus of the report. If your main goal is to show member data, choose Membership Data as the data type. The data type you choose is very important. If you choose an Activity report, for example, then activities are the primary focus of the report.  If you add a membership data field to the report, you could see a member displayed once for every activity her or she attended. Likewise, a Group Data report will mean all address fields will apply to the group, not members who are part of that group.  Consider the type of data you are most interested in, and focus the report appropriately.  If the data to be shown is primarily member data, the report data type should be "Membership Data".

 Report Type - This determines the layout the report will follow. Refer to the Overview topic for a description of the various types.

 Make your selections, then click OK to open the New Report window.

5The maintenance window for user defined reports is divided into two tabs, "Define Fields" and "Preview."  As you might expect, you must define the fields on the report before you can preview what it will look like. Therefore, the Define Fields tab must be completed and changes applied before the Preview tab is enabled. If you have opened an existing report, the Preview tab is available immediately, but if you make any changes on the Define Fields tab, they must be saved before the Preview can be accessed again.:
Define Fields - The Define Fields tab is used for specifying the name of the report as it will appear in the reports dropdown, the default report title, and fields to be displayed. Once fields have been selected, you can change the order, and edit certain attributes such as alignment, sort, etc.
Note: Regarding Custom Fields, the Available Fields list will only show those custom fields defined as able to be Displayed on User-Defined Reports and Views.
Preview - The Preview tab lets you "run" the report with actual data so you can make final adjustments to column widths. You can also change the column order on this tab, and changes will be reflected on the Define Fields tab.
Note: In Preview mode (with the Preview checkbox selected) a divider line may not be visible due to scaling issues, but it will print normally.

Using the Define Fields Tab

The process of defining a report varies slightly between standard reports and label/card/roster reports, because on a standard report all data appears on the same line. With other reports, each "record" has multiple lines down the face of the label/card/roster area; therefore, you have to tell the system what line you are working with before you can add more fields.  Differences like this are noted below.

1If you are creating a new report, enter a name for it in the Report Name field. This is the name that will appear in the dropdown of available reports on the Reports window.
2Specify basic settings for the report, as applicable. Some of these settings are not available for some reports (i.e., mailing labels do not have a Title)

 Report Name -- the name of the report to be shown in the report selection dropdown list on the Reports window.

 Default Title -- this title will be displayed on the report, but can be changed any time the report is run via the Report Settings window.

 Default Font -- this font and height will be used for all fields on the report unless a different font is specified for a specific field. (See Changing Field Properties for details.)

 Orientation -- specify portrait (vertical) or landscape (horizontal) by clicking the icon. You can use any orientation with any page size (if available to change), but Roster reports always use Portrait orientation.

 Page Size -- the type of paper the report will be printed on.  For reports like Mailing Labels, this information is set automatically when you choose the label format.

3Enter other special settings that are available to your specific type of report:

 Standard Reports


 Row Divider -- displays a horizontal line every 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 records. The line is a visual helper to separate one record from another, and is especially helpful on wide (landscape) reports with lots of data. Note: in Print Preview mode, the dividing line may not be visible due to scaling issues, but it will display when printed.

 Roster/Directory Reports:


 Columns -- sets the number of newspaper-style columns to display on the report. A two-column report allows for a wider block of data than a three-column report.

 Heading -- selecting this option creates an Alpha heading to separate the "A's" from the "B's", etc., on the report.  The heading can either be the first letter of the first sort field's data, or the complete text of the field. For best results, use a field like the Last Name for the first sort. This will cause records to be displayed in last name order, and will create appropriate headings from A to Z.  Tip: The first sort column does not have to be visible! If you want the first column of the roster to use the "First Name/Last Name" combined field, just add the Last Name column as well somewhere and make it the first sort -- just select the "Hide Data" option so it stays invisible (see below).

Label Reports


 Label Format -- select the type of label you'll be using.  The system ships with the most common formats pre-defined. If you need another format, please contact support.

Card Reports


 Logo File -- select the logo to display on the left side of the card. This defaults to the report logo specified in preferences if you leave it blank. The logo graphic file is expected to be 144x144 pixels square. Type the full path and file name for the file, or click the browse button to find it. The file must be one of the allowed types (.bmp, .gif, .jpg, .jpeg, .wmf, .rle). If your logo is not square, just create a 144x144 pixel square graphic with a white background, and place your logo in the middle of it, leaving the extra white space untouched. Note: After saving, the logo file name will display something like, Stored ID: 1 instead of the original filename.

 Report Format -- select the card format you'll be using. The system ships with the most common formats pre-defined. If you need another format, please contact support.

Photo ID Card Reports


 Report Format -- select the card format you'll be using. The system ships with the most common formats pre-defined. If you need another format, please contact support.

 Which Photo is Shown?

 The system decides whether to show the member photo or the Friends/Family photo by looking at the fields you select. If you include at  leats one Friends/Family field on the report, the system will use the Friends/Family photo. If there are no such fields on the report, it will use the member photo.  There is no way to display both a member and a family member photo on the same report.

4 Select fields for the report. Note that for a multi-line report, you must choose the line you want to work with before adding fields.

 Standard Reports: Use the left and right arrow buttons to move fields back and forth between the Available Fields list and the Selected Fields list. All fields that are visible in the Selected Fields list will be shown on the completed report unless you turn on the "Hidden" option (see below). On a standard report, the top-to-bottom order of fields in the Selected Fields list represents the left-to-right order the columns will take on the report. In other words, the first (top) field in the Selected Fields list will appear as the left-most column on the report.  For a multi-line report like a label, the top-to-bottom order is relative to the currently selected line.

 Multi-Line Reports: These reports display a block of information for each record. The block can contain multiple lines, and each line can contain one or more fields. Fields must be selected for a specific line of the block. Use the "View/Edit Fields on Line ##" dropdown to choose a line to work with, then use the left and right arrow buttons to move fields back and forth between the Available Fields list and the Selected Fields list.

Selecting the line to work with on a multi-line report.

 When all fields have been added to one line, change the dropdown to the next line and continue adding fields. To see all the fields that have been added to entire report, choose the (All) option. The value in the Line Number column indicates which field is on which line.

 Smart Fields: Some fields are smarter than others, and will automatically calculate, combine, or otherwise manipulate multiple fields into one.


 See Smart Fields for more information.

 General things to consider when choosing fields:

 When choosing fields, it is very important to consider the primary data type of the report you are creating.  Even though you can choose almost any activity, group, or membership field, they can change the behavior of the report based on the primary data type.  For example, if the primary data type is Membership Data, adding activity fields will convert it into an "activity attendance" style of report, where member information might be repeated for every attendance record found.  Likewise, adding dues posting fields to a membership report will turn it into a dues postings report, and the member data will be repeated for every posting displayed on the report.

 To hide this duplicate data, you should consider suppressing repeating value fields, or adding certain common fields to the group header.  See Grouping, Hiding, and Controlling Duplicate Data for more information and examples.

5If you want to adjust properties of a field in the Selected Fields list, select the field you want to change and click Open to open the Field Properties window.


 See Changing Field Properties for complete details.

6Adjust fields up and down in the Selected Fields list to put them in the correct left-to-right order or top-to-bottom order. The top of the list is the left-most column of the line being edited, and the bottom of the list is the right-most column. For a Roster style report, this applies only to the currently selected line.
7When you are ready to display the report, click Apply to save changes, then click the Preview tab.

Using the Preview Tab

The Preview tab enables you to see what the new report will look like, and to make changes to the widths of columns, and even adjust the column order again. (If you're creating a multi-line report, all column editing (width or position) must be done for a specific line.)

1The Limit to ## Records field below the list can be used to prevent the preview window from returning an unnecessarily large number of records for viewing. This setting has no effect on the way the report will work when opened from the Reports window -- it only applies to the Preview.
2Click the Adjust Column Widths button to shift the preview into editing mode. The blue rectangle displayed on top of the data represents the approximate usable width of the report (don't worry about the height of the box, only the width matters). Be sure that all fields within the width of the blue box.

 To work with a line other than Line 1 (for Roster reports), use the "Adjust Fields On" dropdown to change the displayed line number. Be sure to check the fields on each line.


 Drag the border between column headings to resize them. To do this, press and hold the left mouse button on the borderline between columns (or at the edge of a column, as above) the icon shown appears. Then while continuing to hold down the left button, drag the column border to resize it as appropriate. When the size is correct, release the left mouse button.


 Drag an entire column by its heading to change its position. To do this, press and hold the left mouse button on the column heading until the icon shown appears. Then while continuing to hold down the left button, drag the column left or right as appropriate. When you have it in the desired position, release the left mouse button. (Note that it is much easier to move columns by using the arrow buttons to adjust them up and down on the Define Fields tab.)

 Tip: To adjust the width of the right-most column of a line, drag the whole column to the left one column as described above, then adjust the width. When the width is correct, drag the whole column back to the right where it belongs.

 When you're finished editing all lines, click Return to Preview and save the changes.

3If you want to print a test copy of the report, click Print.

 Note: Printing from the Preview tab is not the same as printing from the Reports window. The printing option on this tab is for testing purposes only -- it will not include settings for margins, fonts, etc. Printing for distribution should always be done on the Reports window.

4Once you have the report the way you like it, close the window and then close the Maintain User Reports window to return to the Reports window. You can run the report "for real" by selecting it in the Available Reports dropdown like any other report.