Volodymyr Yatsevsky posted on August 31st, 2012
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No doubts pivot reports provide better insight on multidimensional data with their ability to provide basic operations like slicing, dicing and pivoting OLAP data interactively. Rather than having such data separated into flat reports for dashboard tables, gauges and charts, pivot table report is still a tool where analysts can interactively gain more visibility.
While traditional pivot table report tools like Excel or PowerPivot provide a number of instruments to accomplish the above, the web report should be more robust to meet expectations and usability of common users. From manager to CIO, web pivot table reports should be a straight and easy self-service reporting tool to answer questions with little (or better without) any lengthy trainings or education.
But how extensive such report should be? Whether to include highly prepared and ETLed data or leave end-user with as many as possible dimensions and values to select from and dice? We recommend the following 3 practices for a web pivot report that will bring more value than traditional tables or dashboards, published on the web.
Prepare correct data source
With the latest arising trend of big data and textual analytics, the ETL phase becomes more important than ever. Strive to eliminate any duplicates whether they are in values or dimensions. We will not cover all ETL topics in a small post, however, this is an important practice to take care of. The more prepared data source will be, the higher benefit it would give to end users.
Fight for compact and visible report
Put conditions to locate trends, opportunities or threats
A well-prepared and comprehensive report would be a good addition to a dashboard or analytics solution and can be far more valuable than traditional crosstab reports. However, everyone has their own experience, you are welcome to share your thoughts and best practices as well!