Salsa Weekly Highlight: Variable Fields in ReportsSubmitted Thu Feb 10 2011 16:00:00 GMT-0500 (EST)
It's the "Salsa Weekly Highlight," your quick hit on what's new in Salsa to help get the most out of your online program. As always, you can find plenty more news, updates, and conversation throughout the week on SalsaCommons.org.
This week, I wanted to share an oft-overlooked feature in Reports that may help your team get more out of your Salsa data.
Salsa's custom report builder allows conditions that help you pull the exact data you're looking for, such as:
- Only those new supporters who joined during a specified date range
- A sum of donations but only for a specific donate page
Pretty useful, right?
Most organizations have a core set of reports they keep coming back to, which really means they're running the same report over and over ... but often, running it with slightly different conditions.
Salsa Reports anticipate this need with handy User Variable fields.
User Variables save the trouble of rebuilding whole new reports every time you need a new date range. Instead, arrange a single report that requests a new set of variables every time it's run. Here's how to do it:
- In a report's "Conditions" tab, select the field you'll want to vary each time you run the report.
- Select an operator: "Equals" is the default, but you might want "Less Than," "Greater Than," or others.
- Leave the "Value" field empty.
- Change the "Value type" field to "User Variable".
- In "Variable Label", enter human-readable text that will prompt the person running the report on what kind of information to enter. For instance, if the condition is built on a date field, the Variable label might be "Enter the date here".
- Use the and buttons to stack as many different user-submitted condition entries as you like. These can be freely combined with fixed conditions.
User Variables save you time on frequently-used reports.
They can also really help with colleagues who use Salsa but find the Custom Report builder a little bit daunting. A User Variable report is even smart and user-friendly enough to show the calendar picker for date fields, and menus for picklist fields.
Hopefully, this feature saves you a few extra steps and puts that precious supporter data that much closer to your fingertips.
Got a question about reports or a clever way to use them that the Salsa world should know about? Let us know at email@example.com -- or share it with everyone at SalsaCommons.org!