So you are trying to build a ridiculously complex report that will be pulling different kinds of information from several standard and custom objects, and you are beginning to feel overwhelmed. Have no fear–that joined report will make a lot of sense once you understand some basic concepts.
When you are first creating a report, the record type that you choose will become the “Principal Report Type” for the joined report. This principal report type controls how the common fields are named, but does not affect what data is available for reporting. And don’t worry, you can change the principal report type at any time during the creating and editing of your report.
After creating the basic report, change the format to a joined report. This will prompt your principal report type information to transfer into block number 1. Keep in mind that you are allowed only 5 blocks in a joined report–that should be plenty. Once you have changed the format to joined report, the “Add Report Type” button will no longer be grayed out, and you can add another report type to your report by clicking that button.
From the “Add an Additional Report Type” window, you can choose what report type you want, including custom report types. After selecting the report type and clicking “okay,” you will notice that the information from the new report type has been populated into Block 2. Each block will have its own area for filter criteria.
I was recently in a situation where I needed 2 blocks that were the same report type but had different filter criteria. Once you add a report type by clicking the “Add Report Type” button, you can’t go that route again to add a second block with the same report type. To accomplish this, you need to grab a field or a folder from the fields pane on the left hand side and drag it to the far right of your last block.
In the example above, I have created a second block of Opportunities with Products. I accomplished this by grabbing the Opportunity Information folder and dragging it to the right of my Opportunities with Products block. Now I can filter each block in different ways or display different fields according to my needs.
The end result is one report that displays a whole lot of relevant information. In the case of a recent client, I created a joined report that had 5 different blocks. Of these 5 blocks, I used 3 different report types, one of which was a custom report type. Every block had its own specific criteria and a different date range. So, in essence, each block was its own unique report, its own small story. When a joined report is created and the blocks are put together correctly, you get a whole picture and a happy client.
If you’ve got other tips on creating or maximizing performance of a joined report, leave a comment for us below. And you can always reach out to us on Twitter, too: @redargyledotcom and @TamVogel. Thanks for reading our blog and keep on coming back for more good stuff!