Anything out there better than SSRS

  • @mark-3, your professional response is commendable. Thanks and good luck on your book!

  • While easy for execs is a nice term, it doesn't address the real issue which is always - 'what makes that number and where did it come from?'. You still have to give your execs good numbers / data to look at.

    Additionally, while the SSRS UI may not be very good for execs - it is very easy to write a web or windows app that wraps the parameters and displays via the ReportViewer control.

    I would also beg to differ on SSRS not being a great what-if tool. You can create report scenarios that make what-if easy between SSRS and PowerPivot you can create some very powerful what-if / forecasting tools.

    I have used SSRS since beta and have had very few problems that I could not solve with it. Before that I used Crystal Reports and another called Report Writer so basically 20+ years of reporting.

    Tom in Sacramento - For better, quicker answers on T-SQL questions, click on the following...

  • J Livingston SQL (8/8/2012)

    GSquared (8/8/2012)

    If execs are looking for ad hoc reporting tools, it's hard to go wrong with pivot tables. PowerPivot and Excel have been mentioned already. I haven't used PowerPivot, but Excel pivot tables reading from SSAS are a great way to let execs, etc., "build their own reports". I've seen problems with the kind of people who want to know why the TV on their desk has a typewritter plugged into it, but anyone beyond that stage can learn Excel pivot tables pretty rapidly, in my experience.

    We have been providing excel pivot tables from SSAS for years now.....sadly the majority of middle management execs who really need the slice/dice/summarise/drillthro that is easily available in excel...cannot for some reason (in spite of numerous training sessions / hand holding ) "get their heads around multi dimensions".

    Quite often Support ends up reformatting a pivot table to provide a "new" view...which the exec then refreshes and maybe, just maybe knows how to alter the sales month.

    We have even reverted in some cases to providing static pdf reports.

    Accountants on the other pivot tables.

    ...perhaps this explains the strapline in my signature:-D

    This is because tools like SSRS are not user friendly, they are made for people who like the technical stuff, like devs. If you want managers and business professionals to be able to generate reports and use BI effectively, let them use a tool they know how to use. [Full disclosure: I work for windward]

    Windward's Autotag lets you create/edit templates in microsoft word, excel, and powerpoint. Drag and drop wizards make it easy, and you can import from far more sources than SSRS.

    You can see our comparison between the two here:

    edit: formatting

  • Like SSRS, RockDaisy is based on sql queries. The developer can use the sql editor or sql stored procedures (queries stored on database server)  A number of pro sports teams and media companies are clients. RockDaisy separates the developer interface from the end user. This allows the end-user experience to be super simple (drag and drop)
    The UI/UX is completely customize-able allowing customers to brand and optional embed into existing apps.Full disclosure: I work at RockDaisy - worth checking out as an alternative. Free Trial 

  • If you're still looking, users on IT Central Station interested in SSRS also read reviews for Windward. This user in particular writes that he switched from SSRS to Windward, which you can take a look at here.

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