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Dashboard Reporting: Design Tips and Tricks

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Title: Dashboard Reporting: Design Tips and Tricks


1
Dashboard Reporting Design Tips and Tricks
  • Melinda Rojo
  • Kathy Kimball

2
Session Overview
  • OBIEE offers a rich array of widgets for use in
    designing and developing dashboards, from
    dashboard prompts to view selectors to column
    selectors. This session will share the tips and
    tricks weve discovered on how best to use the
    powerful capabilities.

3
Session Topics
  • Overall Design Tips Tricks
  • Dashboard Tips Tricks
  • Answers Tips Tricks
  • Dashboard Terminology
  • Usage Tracking
  • Resources

4
Overall Design Tips Tricks
  • Develop and implement standards for both
    dashboards and requests
  • Summarize and then drill to detail
  • Make prototypes
  • Make use of visual indicators where appropriate
    and useful
  • Reuse! Reuse! Reuse!
  • Prompts
  • Requests
  • Filters
  • Document requests and filters to facilitate reuse
    and maintenance

5
Dashboard Tips Tricks
  • Prompts
  • Section Properties
  • Request Properties
  • Saved Selections
  • Branding
  • Download Options
  • Printing

6
Dashboard Prompts
  • Use prompts to filter results on either an entire
    Dashboard or the current Dashboard page

7
Dashboard Prompts
  • Tips Tricks
  • Select from many operators available
  • Use SQL Results to set choices shown
  • Use Server Variables to set defaults
  • Set Presentation Variables
  • Use constrain
  • Use multiple prompts
  • Example
  • Only show departments and funds that a user is
    interested in. But still allow them to search on
    any.

8
Dashboard Prompts
9
Dashboard Section Properties
  • Guided Navigation
  • Can guide users to a related set of results
    either by static or conditional links
  • Drill in Place
  • Shows the new results directly in the dashboard
    rather than replacing the entiredashboard page
  • Arrange Horizontally
  • Displays all requests in this sectionhorizontally

10
Dashboard Report Properties
  • Show View
  • Option shows available viewsof a report
  • Default is Compound Layout
  • Report Links
  • Option controls links displayedunder reports

11
Dashboard Saved Selections
  • Use saved selections to allow users to view
    dashboard pages with the their most frequently
    used choices
  • Applies to many aspects of a dashboard page
  • Filters
  • Prompts
  • View selections
  • Stored on BI Server Web Catalog in
    /root/users/username/_selections

12
Dashboard Saved Selections
  • Tips Tricks
  • Add a button to all dashboard pages allowing
    users to clear their selections

13
Dashboard Branding
  • OBIEE can be customized to your institution using
    styles, skins, and custom images
  • Tips Tricks
  • Name your dashboard (bg_banner.jpg)http//obiee10
    1.blogspot.com/2008/09/obiee-portal-customization-
    part-1.html
  • Change Powered by Oracle on page footer
    (siebelbug.gif)http//obiee101.blogspot.com/2008/
    10/obiee-replacing-siebelbuggif-powered-by.html

14
Dashboard Download Options
  • Download to Excel and Download to Excel 2000
    behave a little differently depending on the
    platform and browser used
  • We recommend Mac users use the Firefox browser
    and the Excel 2000 link
  • Excel and Excel 2000 file format is really .mht
    mhtml though the extension is .xls
  • Youll want to save the file as a Microsoft Excel
    Workbook before editing the file

15
Download to Excel or Excel 2000
  • Formulas are not downloaded.  The value in a cell
    is downloaded as that value, not as a formula. 
  • Monetary columns download as numbers.  Values
    with commas are formatted as numbers and retain
    formatting that was displayed on the Dashboard,
    i.e., if two decimal places are shown then those
    appear in Excel.
  • Monetary columns without a comma are formatted as
    general, which is a number but with no specific
    number format.  The value does not change but
    decimal places are suppressed if zeros appear to
    the right of the decimal place.
  • Columns that are numeric and contain values with
    leading zeros lose the leading zeros when
    downloaded to Excel.

16
Conditional Formatting Indicators
  • Weve had inconsistent results using conditional
    formatting indicators such as a flag or bubble
    and the image may move when the rows are sorted
  • Conditional formatting indicators appear as a
    broken images when Download to Excel 2000 is used
    in both Firefox and IE 7 on Windows/PC
  • No testing has been done on Macs yet

17
Download to Data
  • Download to Data creates a CSV (Comma Separated
    Values) file, which includes all of the columns
    included in the Answers request (not just the
    view displayed on the screen) 
  • Formatting from the screen will not be carried
    over to the file
  • Additional download results have been documented
    on our website http//polydata.calpoly.edu/dashbo
    ards/faqs.html

18
Dashboard Printing
  • PDF or HTML of displayed view
  • Headers or Footers appear in PDF if added to the
    Compound Layout

19
Headers and Footers
  • Cal Poly footer includes
  • Saved Name (name of the request)
  • Print Date
  • Page Number
  • Author Name (person running the dashboard request)

20
Answers Tips Tricks
  • Column Selector View
  • View Selector View
  • Narrative View
  • Compound Layout
  • Saved Filters
  • Saved Data Formats
  • Value Interaction (Navigation)

21
Column Selector View
  • Use column selectors view to allow users to
    dynamically change which columns appear in a
    request

22
Column Selector View
  • Tips Tricks
  • Standardize on label text such as Show Column
  • Color code column selector to make visible to end
    users
  • Standardize on common columns and sort in same
    order on all requests
  • Used Advanced Tab to edit XML and copy/paste
  • Include all members of hierarchies in column
    selectors so they can jump to level
  • Add column selector to a hidden field on a Pivot
    to sort results (otherwise only available on
    table view)
  • Uncheck automatically refresh when a new column
    is selected so users have GO button

23
View Selectors View
  • Use view selector view to select a specific view
    of the results from among the saved views

24
View Selectors
  • Tips Tricks
  • Standardize on label text such as Select a
    View
  • Create view to display filters
  • Create view with instructions before displaying
    data
  • Create view to easily download data

25
Narrative View
  • Use narrative view to combine text with the
    results of a request
  • Useful for referencing variables

26
Compound Layout View
  • Use compound layout view to assemble different
    views for display on a dashboard
  • Tips Tricks
  • Remove the Title view
  • Know your boundaries (upper, lower, left, right)
  • View Boundaries
  • Report Boundaries
  • Use multiple compound layouts for requests with
    multiple layouts but the same criteria

27
Compound Layout
28
Saved Filters
  • Use saved filters so they may be shared with
    multiple requests
  • Document shared filters in a flow chart to show
    dependencies on specific saved filters

29
Saved Filters
30
Saved Filters
  • Tips Tricks
  • Create to match all columns in a dashboard page
    prompt
  • Create to match all columns in the criteria
  • Create to match all columns in standard column
    selectors
  • Create to use for development while building
    new requests
  • Order of filters matters!

31
Saved Data Formats
  • Use saved data formats to apply, save, and re-use
    column properties on Value Format tab, Column
    Format tab, and Conditional Format tabs
  • Scope of save can vary
  • For a specific column
  • As a system-wide default for this column
  • As a system-wide default for this data type
  • Stored in an XML file in the Web Catalog in the
    /root/system/metadata folder

32
Saved Data Formats
  • Tips Tricks
  • Save the email address field to display
    system-wide using mail-to format
  • Will display on all requests using that column

33
Value Interaction
  • Use value interaction to specify what should
    happen when a user clicks on a column heading or
    column value
  • Allows users to navigate to multiple requests or
    dashboards
  • If multiple navigation paths, pop-up window
    displays caption
  • Provides drill-to-detail capability

34
Value Interaction
  • Source Request
  • Set Interaction Type to Navigate
  • Add Navigation Target to an Answers request
  • Add caption (if multiple targets)

35
Value Interaction
  • Target Request
  • Use filter with operator of Is Prompted
  • Include all possible columns
  • Columns in Pivot Axis
  • Columns in Prompts
  • Column Selectors
  • Column names must match source request EXACTLY

36
Dashboard Elements
37
Dashboard Terminology
  • Dashboard content separated by Functional Areas
  • Dashboard Pages one or more related requests
  • Dashboard Page Prompt controls requests on
    dashboard page
  • Narrative text allows static and variable text
  • Request query
  • Hyperlinks - hierarchical drills, drill to detail
    options, and links to related information
  • Filter selection criteria for request
  • Column Selector view different columns of data
  • View Selector select different reports within
    the same request
  • Conditional formatting using green, yellow, red
    symbols
  • Presentation Catalog Folder list of content
    related requests

38
Usage Tracking
  • OBIEE provides a usage tracking system with the
    standard installation
  • Usage Tracking includes
  • SQL statements to create tracking user and
    tables/views
  • RPD containing Usage Tracking models
  • Web Catalog for Usage Tracking dashboard

39
Usage Tracking
  • Installing the Usage Tracking components
    includes
  • Creating a database user to host the Usage
    Tracking objects
  • Creating the Usage Tracking database objects
  • Merging master RPD with Usage Tracking RPD
  • Altering NQSConfig.ini to enable
  • Importing Usage Tracking web catalog components
  • Reference Blog for step-by-step
    instructionshttp//obiee101.blogspot.com/2008/08/
    obiee-setting-up-usage-tracking.html

40
Usage Tracking
41
Usage Tracking
42
Resources
  • Oracle Metalink 3.0http//metalink3.oracle.com
  • Oracle Business Intelligence obiee-101http//obie
    e101.blogspot.com
  • Business Intelligence Oraclehttp//oraclebizint
    .wordpress.com
  • FAQs for PolyData Dashboardshttp//polydata.calpo
    ly.edu/dashboards/faqs.html

43
Questions?
44
Contact
  • OBIEE Technical Conferencehttp//polydata.calpol
    y.edu/dashboards/obiee_conf/index.html
  • Email polydata_at_calpoly.edu
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