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How to create a report (V6)

Updated on September 25, 2019


Report definition rules, introduced in V6, simplify creating, adapting, and sharing reports. Both managers and developers can create and manage reports using report definition rules.

This article outlines the two ways to create a report based on a report definition rule.

Suggested Approach

There are two ways to create a report using a report definition rule:

  1. Create a report using the Report Browser and Report Viewer
  2. As a developer, create a report definition rule directly

A. Create a report using the Report Browser and Report Viewercreate a report

The Report Browser lets the user quickly create reports, and adapt existing reports, about work types and other data in the applications identified in the user's access group. A manager can use the Report Browser without needing a deep understanding Process Commander rules, and without access to the Designer Studio..

The Report Browser appears in the Manager composite portal provided by Process Commander, and may appear in other composite portals created by your organization. If you do not have access to a composite portal containing the Report Browser, add one to your access group:

  1. Open the access group associated with your account and select the Settings tab.
  2. Locate the Secondary Portal Layouts section and add a composite portal to your list. Process Commander provides a sample manager composite portal named "Manager". Your development team may have provided others.
  3. Save the access group. You may need to log out and log in again for the changes to take effect.

Once you have access to a manager composite portal, open it by clicking the Run icon (run icon ) and selecting Open Portal > Manager. The portal appears in a new window.

Select the Monitor Activity area of the portal to display the Report Browser.

Make sure you have a Personal Reports category. Until you have one or more categories, you cannot save personal reports. To create a category, click the New Category icon (new category icon) and, in the form that appears, provide a name and description for the category. The category in this example is "personal reports", but you can create as many categories as you like, with whatever names best suit their uses.

For Owner Type select Personal. Click OK to create the category.

Now you are ready to create a new report. Click the New Report icon (new report icon) to display the Create New Report form. Select the Data Type for the report from the list of available types:

data type

Complete the rest of the form by providing a name, title, and description for the report. Save the report in one of the available personal reports categories:

form fields completed

Click OK to create the report. The gadget selects some default properties of the data type you chose, to provide a basic report you can modify.

To specify the correct data for the report:

edit columns to includeWith the report displaying in the Report Viewer, click the Edit Columns to Include icon:

The Columns to Include form appears, displaying default data selections, as shown above. You can now specify data for each column in the report, and how it is to appear. You can add columns or delete existing columns.

columns to include form

Click OK at any time to see how your changes affect the data the report includes. To save your changes, click the Save or Save As icons at the top left of the Report Viewer.

Many further options are available to refine the contents and appearance of your report. For further information about refining the new report, see Using the Report Viewer to define and evolve simple reports.

B. As a developer, create a report definition rule directly.

If you have access to the Designer Studio, you can create a new report definition rule directly. This is a longer process, but lets the developer create reports for data types in any existing class. Further, the developer can create class joins to access data from multiple related tables in the database.

In the Rules Explorer, select Reports, right-click on Report Definition, and select New. Complete the New Rule form, providing the class the report will belong to in the Applies To field and giving the report a descriptive name in the Report Name field.

When you create a report definition rule using the Report Viewer, the new rule has a default set of properties so that, if you view the report, you will see data immediately. When you create a report definition rule using the New Rule form in the Designer Studio, the resulting rule has no default properties or data access information. You must fill in the information on each tab to make a useful report.

blank report definition rule

  • Complete the Designtab to:
    • Define which properties, functions, or expressions are to appear as columns in the report, and the settings that control how each column appears (heading, width, format, sort order, and so on).
    • Define filtering conditions that define which class instances are to be included as rows in the report or in summarized data.
    • Define other general settings to control the appearance of the report.
    • Optional. Click the Include a Chart button and then complete the Chart Definition dialog to add and configure a chart display of the report’s data within the Report Viewer.  This can only be done for Summarized reports.

    At any time while completing this tab, click the Save & Preview button to save the current report definition and display the results in the Report Viewer.

  • Optional. Complete the User Interactions tab to control how users can interact with the report within the Report Viewer, such as:
    • Whether users can modify the report, print it, export it to Excel, and so on.
    • Whether SmartInfo icons appear on each row of detailed reports, to display additional information about each row.
  • Optional. Complete the Data Accesstab to:
    • Define joins to other classes, declarative indices, and/or reports.
  • Optional. Complete the Parameters tab to document the name, description, and data type of parameters used in the report definition rule. 
  • Enter a Full Description on the History tab which explains the report in more detail.

See also Report Definition rules -- beyond the basics.

Note: After you create and save a report definition rule, it becomes accessible in the Report Browser for anyone with access to the class to which the rule applies. A manager can select a report a developer has created, save a copy of it in the Report Viewer, and make further modifications to suit specific needs.


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