Salesforce Report Management
Databases are fantastic because you enter data once and use it many times for many purposes. Follow the guidelines below to help your users run reports with ease and confidence, ensuring high user adoption and preventing rogue spreadsheets. These guidelines are written with Salesforce in mind, but apply to most solutions.
Create and Maintain Standard Reports
Creating reports from scratch can be intimidating, while customizing existing reports is easy. Your team will appreciate having a report to customize vs. starting from scratch.
- Set report parameters to meet agreed upon definitions.
- Wisely title the reports, consider using a naming convention. E.g. New Leads This Week
- Provide Report Descriptions phrased as questions, which the report answers. E.g. How many and which Leads were created this week? This way, anyone in the organization can find the report and answer his/her question without feeling the need to check with another person. Autonomous staff are efficient staff.
- For time-bound reports, consider using Salesforce-supplied time filters (this week, last year, this month, etc.); this makes reports eternal and easier to customize. This may not always be possible, however, using these filters can create reports that feed dashboards and need little, if any, maintenance.
- As appropriate or requested, schedule reports to be emailed regularly to teammates. I love it when the computer can remove a regular task from a person’s workload. Also, it’s great to know exactly what information is going to whom.
Designate Report Managers
- A select few content experts assume a Report Manager role and are the only individual(s) permitted to edit the standard reports and folders.
- All other users are only able to read/write to two folders: My Personal Custom Reports and Unfiled Public Reports. They contact the Report Manager(s) to suggest changes to the standard reports and folders.
- Report Manager(s) delete any reports that haven’t been run in 365 days and are responsible for the overall organization and maintenance of reports.
Organize Report Folders
- All folders (and the reports contained within them) except Unfiled Public Reports are read only, editable only by the Report Manager(s).
- A report may be in more than one folder; easy access is the goal.
- Streamline the user interface by editing sharing settings for any unused Salesforce.com ™ Standard Report folders so that they are hidden.
Two More Tips
- Use these videos to remind yourself (and others) how to build and customize reports. If you’re receiving a lot of questions from coworkers about making reports, refer them to YouTube! http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL93A4F2013DDC35FE
- Hide unused report types to reduce clutter in the user interface and make it that much easier for your team to successfully create reports from scratch. https://help.salesforce.com/apex/HTViewHelpDoc?id=reports_hide_report_types.htm&language=en_US