Salesforce Tutorial# 13: Salesforce Reports and Dashboards

Earlier in this tutorial series we have seen many features and capabilities of Salesforce. Today in this tutorial you will get some insights on Salesforce Reports and Dashboards.  Salesforce has different types of reports. A report is a template which is used by users to display the information in well defined form. Report is displayed in tabular or graphical chart. It can be filtered, and grouped. Also you can organize the reports in a Folder. User can control the access on this folder by keeping public, hidden, shared or sometimes read only access. One can made the folder is accessible for entire organization or vice versa can be available for single person based on permissions.

Standard Salesforce Reports

A report represents the relationship between primary objects and its related objects. To represent this relationship report has predefined templates which makes reporting easier. Every report displays only those records which meets the criteria.

Salesforce has Standard report type as default report type. Standard report type is present for all salesforce standard objects. For custom objects, salesforce automatically create a standard report type using “with”, or “and” relationship.

Custom Salesforce Reports

The custom report type can be created by selecting the objects of your interest and their relationships. The wizard will give access to all child objects of these selected objects. This type of report can be customize as per user need.

Salesforce Reports Presentation Styles

Based on the presentation following styles can be used to generate report in salesforce.

Tabular Report : The basic form of presentation of user data is tabular report. It has simple listing of data without any subtotals. One can use this report if the presentation is simple.

Summary Report : Summary report is little bit advanced report as compare to tabular report having grouping of information with subtotals.

Matrix Report : Matrix report has groups of data based on columns and rows. This report can be used to represent comparison between related total with total by row and total by column.

Join Report : Join report has the more advanced way to represent data. This report will allow you to relate different blocks and show them in single report. Each block has unique attributes like name, filters, columns, data, and summary fields.

Features of the Salesforce Reports

Salesforce Reports is one of the most powerful features to represent business and easy understanding of the relationship among objects.  Every report in salesforce support following features.

Custom Summary Formula field: User can define formula based on summary report is generated.

Exception Reports (Cross Filters): These reports are used to show highlight the position where data doesn’t exist. These reports are created  using cross filters.

Custom Summary Formulas: These formulas are used on reports to calculate complex data from summary level.

Analytical Snapshots: Snapshot captures data at schedule point with respect to time.

Historical Trend Reporting: This will allow you to track your data. This will allow you to track upto 8 fields on Opportunity object and 3 fields up to custom objects.

Bucket Field: Salesforce allows us to categorize records without using any formula. This is known as Bucketing. In bucketing user defines the bucket field (or bucket multiple categories) to group report value.

Condition High-lighting : To highlight field values on summary or matrix reports based on some criteria like value ranges user can apply conditional highlighting. To enable this, report must have custom summary formula or at least one summary field.

Scheduling report for future run : Once you create a new report we can schedule report by using following steps:

  1. Set the frequency field to run report. It can be any value you want to run the report number of times like Daily, Weekly or Monthly.
  2. Mention the dates in Start and End fields.
  3. To run the report you must select start time. Click on Find available options  to  choose a start time.
  4. To save report schedule click on Save Report Schedule.

Salesforce Dashboards

Dashboard is a page layout for visual display of your data. Each dashboard has 1:1 mapping for its component and report. One can clubbed multiple dashboard components to display a single report. The security settings is used to control the visibility of data. These dashboards are dynamic in nature. User can only view their own data as per their settings.

Dashboard components and their usage

Charts, tables, gauges, metrics are component in dashboard. User can select any of these component to view data.

Chart: Chart is used for graphical presentation of data. Visual force has variety of chart types to represent your data.

Gauge: This can be used when the single value need to pointed within range of custom values.

Metric: This used to represent data based on one key value.

Table: Table is used to show the set of data.

Dashboard Settings

The dashboard setting option is available next to report setting for tabular reports limited by row.

Dashboard Running User concept

Each dashboard has a running user, based on security settings determined by the user the data is display in a dashboard.

To select a dashboard’s running user in Salesforce Classic use following steps:

  1. Go to Edit a dashboard.
  2. Click the down arrow button next to the View dashboard as
  3. Select a running user setting. It has two options
    • Run as specified user. In this view all users able to see same data regardless of their personal security settings.
    • Run as logged-in user.This type of settings is used in dynamic dashboard and each user can view only their own data
  4. Then select the option “Let authorized users change running user” to enable user with permission to change the running user on the dashboard view page.
  5. If user has “View My Team’s Dashboards” selection then dashboard as any user below them in the role hierarchy can view dashboard.
  6. “View All Data” option will allow all users to edit the dashboard and view it as any user in their organization.
  7. “Enable Other User’s Dashboard” will restrict the access to edit the dashboard. If they have access to it, though that user is not the running user and don’t have “View All Data.”
  8. Click OK.
  9. View dashboard as field, “running user”.
  10. Click Save.

Thats it for Salesforce Reports and Dashboards overview. Please feel free to get back to us if you need any more information or go through our other salesforce articles.

Tutorial Index

  1. Introduction to Cloud Computing ( and
  2. Overview of Database Concepts (
  3. Introduction to
  4. Building Salesforce Custom App and Objects
  5. Object Relationships and Formula Field in Salesforce
  6. Salesforce Security Model and Overview
  7. Automation in Salesforce
  8. Approval Process in Salesforce
  9. Introduction to SOQL and SOSL
  10. Introduction to Apex
  11. Salesforce Data Management
  12. Visualforce MVC Architecture on Cloud
  13. Salesforce Reports and Dashboards
  14. Building a Visualforce (Custom) Page for the Salesforce App
  15. Salesforce Sandbox and Overview of capabilities
  16. Learning Apex and Deployment Tools

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