Chapter 10. Creating and Running Reports

Now that you've started to put data into Microsoft CRM, you're ready to get that data out. An easy way to analyze data in Microsoft CRM is to run a report. But what if one of the pre-installed reports isn't what you're looking for? In fact, experience tells us that it's very unlikely that the prebuilt reports are going to be exactly what you want. So what now?

Prior to Microsoft CRM 4, custom report creation was left to people who could author reports in SQL Reporting. Not an easy task for the average user. But don't worry, because version 4 has a built-in Report Wizard. The Report Wizard is simple to use, especially if you're familiar with using Advanced Find. (See Chapter 3 for more on Advanced Find.)

The Report Wizard provides limited design features. Designing reports with the Report Wizard allows for grouping and sub-grouping of data, column selection, some data summary, and graphing. Reports with graphs can also have the additional capability of drilling down to the details that represent the graph.

Adding Report Categories

In Microsoft CRM, you can aggregate reports by category. Out of the box, there are four categories: Sales, Service, Administrative, and Marketing. You can add your own categories to the list as well. Although you can find reports in more than one category, Microsoft has segregated the reports based on the following:

  • Sales reports: Collect all the activities associated with a sale, from the lead through the actual sale. ...

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