Data, Data, How-to
Easily create a custom-made report with these 5 steps
6 April, 2018
5min. reading time
Did you know that you can change the layout or setup of any report within Microsoft Dynamics? You can even create your own report layout for each customer if desired.
How amazing would it have been if that was possible when you were still in high school: adjust a report to the wishes of its recipient. You wouldn’t have any problems showing your grade list that same evening to your parents. Or you could have collected more money when visiting your grandmother or neighbor.
Maybe you have already considered – or you have even tried – creating a specific report for that one customer and make it more personalized. Inserting your customer’s logo, adding an extra column and slightly adjusting the order of columns. But perhaps you were worried that it would be (too) complicated and take too much time? Or that you should even hire the expertise of Boltrics in order to create a custom-made report?
The good news is: It couldn’t be further from the truth! You can simply do it yourself! In this blog, I will guide you step by step, and share how you can easily customize your reports.
Adjust the layout yourself
For example, you can adjust a lot yourself in terms of the layout. Consider the location, form, and size of the data on the report. In addition, it is also a piece of cake to add an image.
Note: Deleting data is not that difficult as well. But retrieving this information is a totally different ball game, so be “careful” with removing parts of the report.
Are you ready to create your own customer specific report?
Let’s try and figure out if we can turn the layout of an existing report into a customer specific.
Step 1: Open Dynamics, and search for “lay”
Enter “lay” in the search bar, see figure 1.
Step 2: Select “Custom Report Layouts”
There you will find all adjusted custom report layouts, see figure 2.
This may be empty for you. Then you probably have never used a customer report layout.
In the above example, only two reports are shown: one for report 206 and one for 1306. Two different document types: Word and RDLC. The Word layouts are already used by a large number of customers and often created in-house. Boltrics standard delivers an RDLC layout. This is embedded in the report itself and is also called the “Built-in layout”. This also applies to a customer-specific report.
In this blog, we specifically focus on the RDLC layouts and we leave out Word layouts.
Step 3: Create a custom report layout yourself
Select “New”. In figure 3 choose “Rapport-id: 11154661”, the standard report for a booked shipment. Next select “Insert RDLC Layout”.
Microsoft Dynamics automatically creates a new line, as shown in figure 4. Give this layout a recognizable description. Especially when you adjust the same report for several customers, you’ll thank me for it later.
Step 4: Edit the layout
Select “Edit Layout”. The SQL Report Builder opens, see figure 5. Do you work with Microsoft Dynamics 2018? Then this will be the 2016 version. If you are still working on an older version of Microsoft Dynamics, the 2014 version will open.
A little goes a long way
This is what our entire blog is about… Here you can adjust the layout to your wishes.
You get the point: excess is killing. Anything is possible, but the question is whether you really want that? Let’s try to make one field yellow and check if we can see it in our report.
Select the field that is red outlined in figure 6. Right-click and select: “Text Box Properties”.
Next, select “Fill” – as shown in figure 7. Select a color and confirm with “OK” to close the (property) screen.
Close the SQL Report Builder editor by clicking on the Close button – as shown in figure 8 at the indicated “step 1”. Microsoft Dynamics will show the notification (step 2) if you want to save the changes. Select “Yes”. Next answer the question whether you want to import or cancel the layout changes (as shown in step 3) with “Yes”. This screen has been left open all that time.
The layout has now been changed but is not in use yet. After you have completed step 4, try to run the report first without executing step 5, then you will see the difference when executing step 5.
Step 5: Launch the layout
Enter “lay” in the search bar, and select the option “Report Layout Selection”.
Note: processing this task may take a few minutes.
Once the selection is open, you can filter at the top of the list on “Report ID is 11154661”, see figure 10 and follow the steps.
Once you have selected “OK”, the print shows your custom-made report, see figure 11.
Does this always work? Yes, the steps mentioned above always work*.
* During the upgrade/test period – where you have several versions next to each other (such as 2017 and 2018) – only the highest version works.
Thank you for participating and good luck!
PS. Followed all the steps mentioned above – but you didn’t get the desired result?
We are here to help you. Send a request via email@example.com, and your Customer Success Consultant will come back to you as soon as possible.