Categorise Your Chris21 Reports

If your list of Chris21 reports is becoming large and difficult to search, you’re not alone. A common complaint I hear from Chris21 users is of the number of report designer reports that are written by the various users within an organisation.

This means the list of Chris21 reports can become very long over time and it then becomes difficult to find the one you are looking for. Worse still, when you do find a report and you try to run it, access is often prohibited. Sound familiar?

Of course, the problem is exacerbated because if a user can’t access a report they will usually resort to creating a new one, thus adding further to the list!

The reality is that this is a common issue because the default value for the Access Control options is Access prohibited to non-owners. So when a user creates a new report they must remember to change the Access control option to allow others to access the report. This step is often overlooked. From a user’s perspective, it would be an improvement if the default was to allow modifications.

It’s not just access issues that are the problem. Many organisations have no rules or conventions in place to create useful reports and name them accordingly. For instance, a report that a payroll user has created will most likely be useful to colleagues. Rather than each user creating their own report, it is far better for everyone to use the one report.

To add further to this issue, many users will want a report that is specific to their requirements. It is often considered easier to create a new report, rather than to find an existing one and make some modifications.

Notwithstanding these issues, it’s unlikely that you will ever get to the ideal of a controlled list of Chris21 reports that will be used regularly by multiple users. So, unfortunately, your list of reports will continue to grow.

So what’s the answer?

There are two options that I can suggest. Firstly, on a regular basis you could review the list of reports and cull (delete) those that are obsolete or duplicated. Perhaps this could be done as one of your annual pre-upgrade tasks.

Secondly, you could categorise your reports. The Chris21 report designer has functionality that allows you to group reports into categories. For instance, you could create a category called Payroll for all of your payroll reports. You could have another category for Training, and so on.

When you categorise reports, you can use a Quick Filter to show your reports list by category. This will make the list of reports much shorter and make it much easier to find the report you are looking for. You just need to remember to select a category for each report that you write. The Category field is found on the report designer Options tab.

For an easy way to manage your Chris21 reports list, try the Category feature. Searching for that elusive report will be just a little easier.