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Working with charts in reports (Pega 7)

Updated on October 8, 2019

Adding a chart to a report can make it easier for report users to understand and act on the information the report contains. A chart in a Pega Platform™ application can show in a dramatic fashion the changes of values over time (sales per division per quarter), the relative significance of different data values on the report (such as revenue generated by each product in the product line), or when values on a report exceed thresholds that are important to an organization (such as average days spent in each stage of the process).

A user reading a Report Definition with a chart can:

  • Zoom in or out along a timeline or a trend report, to show the big picture or a critical section of the chart.
  • Drill down to see the specific data contributing to a particular point, column, or area on the chart.
  • Change the filter conditions for the report, perhaps to show only the top performing (or worst performing) products on a chart showing product sales.
  • Switch between a 2D and a 3D display of the chart (for charts that support this option).

Report Definitions generate list reports and summarized reports. Only summarized reports can include charts. A summarized report has at least one column with a numeric aggregate value (a count, total, average, or similar value) and at least one group-by (unaggregated) column (case status, the day/week/month/quarter when items were entered, and so on).

For information about creating a Report Definition, see Reporting in Pega Platform - tutorial videos and Using the Report Browser, Report Viewer, and Report Editor.

If you have created custom skins for earlier versions of the Report Editor and Report Viewer, reports might not display as you expect them to in Pega 7. To fix this issue, see Updating skins in Reporting.

Chart Editor access

The Chart Editor gives you the controls to create and edit charts for summarized reports.

To access the Chart Editor:

  1. Open an existing summarized report or create a new one. An existing report appears in the Report Viewer. Unless editing is disabled for this report, click Edit Report to open the report in the Report Editor. When you create a new report, it appears immediately in the Report Editor.
  2. Click the Add Chart to open the Chart Editor for this report.

In the Designer Studio you can open the Report Definition for the report you want to work with, and launch the Chart Editor in the Chart tab.

By default the Report Editor shows simulated data to speed up rendering time and let you concentrate on the look of the report and its chart, rather than on the details of a particular data set. You can switch to a view of actual report data by clicking Actual Data in the toolbar. You can switch back and forth between actual and simulated data as often as you like. Your setting here also governs previews of the chart in the Chart Editor.

Available chart types

You can choose from a number of chart types, most with several subtypes. Click All Chart Types on the toolbar to see the Select Chart Type display, from which you can pick the most suitable chart.

Here is a brief description of each of the chart types:

  • Map Pega Platform provides hundreds of maps to use in displaying report data. You need to select an appropriate map and set default mappings for specific maps and the property values of specific classes on the Maps tab of the Reporting Settings landing page.

    Note: When you run the Chart Editor through the Report Editor, maps are not available because some configuration steps must be performed on the Reporting landing page. Open the Report Definition in the Designer Studio and open the Chart Editor on the Chart tab to see and select available map types and subtypes. See Use a map to illustrate a report.

  • Combo – Combo charts let you combine a column chart and a line chart in a single display. In a combo chart, the values for one aggregated numeric column appear as columns on the chart, and the values for another aggregated numeric column appear as lines. In Single Y-Axis combo charts the same scale applies to both columns and lines; in Dual Y-Axis charts different scales are used for the columns and lines.
  • Area – The data values display as lines with the area between them and the X-axis shown as colored regions.
  • Funnel – Displays values for an ordered set of steps or stages in a process. You can, for instance, show the number of opportunities at each stage in a sales pipeline. Normally the first step, with the largest number of sales prospects, is represented by the largest part of the funnel.
  • Pyramid – Like a funnel chart, but with the step or stage with the largest value shown at the bottom.
  • Bubble – Show three sets of numeric column values in a single display. For example, an investments report could show, in a bubble chart, the age of each investment, the amount invested, and each instrument's ROI. The X and Y axes would represent two values, with the diameter of the bubbles representing the third.
  • Pie – Values appear like wedges in a pie.
  • Bar – Values appear as horizontal bars.
  • Column – Values appear as vertical bars.
  • Line – The values of each data column appear as points on a line.
  • Spark – Spark columns and spark lines are microcharts, typically displaying trend information, that you can embed within a layout cell.
  • Gauge – Gauges can be very effective in displaying burn rate, throughput and other measurements of current state. The options range in visual layout from tachometers to LED displays to a thermometer.

Adding a chart to a report

You can change the existing chart type and subtype at any time by selecting from the choices on the toolbar.


Click any chart type to display its subtypes; or click All Chart Types to display the full range of charts, as shown earlier.

You can change your report's chart type and subtype as often as you want. Often, the Chart Editor will be able to retain your your options and settings from the previously selected chart type. However, since not all options apply to all chart types, some settings may be lost when you switch chart types and may have to be reentered.

Adding data to the chart

The Design pane on the left of the Chart Editor lets you quickly specify which report columns to include in the chart, and how the report uses them. At the top of the pane is a list of Available Columns; those already used in the chart are indicated with check marks.

The lower part of the pane is a static picture of the selected chart type and subtype, with one or more Drop Zones, dotted rectangular areas that represent, depending on the chart, where and how report columns can be used within the chart.

To include a column in the chart, drag any column from the Available Columns list and drop it on a drop zone. A green check mark appears if the column is over a drop zone where it can be used. If a drop zone already has a column associated with it, dropping a different column there replaces the original column.

A gear icon gear.png appears to the left of the each drop zone. Click the icon to display the DataSettings form. Here you can specify formatting and other options that are specific to the column in the drop zone. The available options depend on the selected chart type, as well as the type of data in that column. Consult the online help documentation to learn about the options that are available.

Specifying chart settings

To the right on the toolbar are a series of links:


Click a link to display a form where you can specify settings for your chart.


Click to display the Chart Title form. Provide a title for the chart. Optionally, adjust the font size and font weight, using the drop-down menus to the right of the Title field.

Click OK to apply the title to the chart; click Cancel to abandon your edits and close the form.

Color Settings

Click to display the available color options for the currently-selected chart:

  • Background Color & Color Palette You can define a background color for the chart by entering a color code as a hex value (ffffff is white; 000000 is black; you can obtain other color codes from an image-editing tool). The square to the right of the field displays the color you have selected.

    The Color Palette option lets you define a set of colors that will be applied to chart elements such as pie slices, columns, etc. If there are fewer colors in your palette than the chart needs, the chart selects additional colors from the standard palette.

    For maps, if you specify a custom color palette, the map uses only those colors for map regions or areas. See Adding a map to illustrate a report.

    Click Add Color to add a color to the palette, as described above. Click the garbage can at the right of any row to remove that row.
  • Conditional Colors – Here you can define colors that are conditionally applied to chart elements (such as pie slices or columns) based on either numeric values or Group By column values displayed on the chart. You can, for example, display columns in a column chart with a value over 100 as red. You may define conditional colors that are based on the numeric value associated with a chart element, or that are based on the Group By column value for the element.

    Click Add Conditional Color to add a new color. Each conditional color consists of a condition (e.g., Is Equal New, Is Greater or Equal 100), and a color code as a HEX value, as described above.

    Click the garbage can icon at the right of any row to remove that conditional color.
  • Threshold Colors Here you can define colored lines or colored regions that to display on the chart grid. For example, on a line or column chart you can display a red line, parallel to the x-axis, at a value of 100 on the y-axis.

    Click Add Threshold Color to add a new color threshold. Each threshold color consists of a condition (e.g., Is Equal to display a colored line, Between to display a colored region), a value or range of values, a color code as a HEX value, as described above, and an optional label to be displayed next to the colored line or region.

    Click the garbage can icon at the right of any row to remove that conditional color.

Click OK to save your specifications; click Cancel to close the form without saving your work.

General Settings

Click to display three options:

  • Format Options You can specify the default font size and weight for all labels on the chart; the default chart size (Small, medium, large, or custom. If you choose "custom", additional fields appear where you specify the chart height and width in pixels); and whether the chart appears initially in 3D or 2D (if the currently-selected chart type supports 3D).
  • Legend Options Check the Show Legend check box to have a legend (the explanation of the colors or shapes used) appear with the chart.

    If you select this check box, additional fields appear. Use the drop-down menus to set the legend's direction and location on the chart.
  • Enable User Commands These options let you specify which commands are available to end users when the chart is displayed. These commands display above the chart in the Report Viewer; they do not appear in the Preview Pane of the Chart Editor. The user commands available depend on the selected chart type.
    • Switch Between 2D And 3D
    • Maximize Chart in Window
    • Show Detailed Data in Embedded Chart
    • Open in new window

Click OK to save your specifications; click Cancel to close the form without saving your work.

Getting the right chart for the report

Choosing which chart to use depends on what message you want to convey. A confusing chart, or one that directs attention away from the important information in the report, can be worse than no chart at all. The three charts below all draw on the same data, and you have to use your knowledge of your message and your audience to decide whether one of these, or some other chart, would be the one to use.


You can experiment with charts for your report as long as you want until you find the chart type and subtype that best conveys the report's information. Then you can adjust colors, labels, and other settings until the resulting chart is both pleasing and compelling.

Displaying a chart by itself

In some circumstances you may want to display the chart by itself, without its supporting data. Pega 7 makes provides this option: see Display and export a chart by itself, without the report data.


Pega Platform 7.1.1 - 7.4 Reporting Communications and Media Consumer Services Financial Services Government Healthcare and Life Sciences Insurance Healthcare and Life Sciences Manufacturing Consumer Services Consumer Services

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