Sunday, May 17, 2009

Gauges in SSRS 2008, The feature I have been waiting for!

Gauges that show the exact percentage amount, as I have experienced with most of the clients, has been one of the features that people mostly ask for in BI reporting/Dashboards. People ask for cost effective BI solutions with one platform. Microsoft SQL Server is a very good example for that since it provides a Database Engine for the Relational Data Warehouses, Powerful ETL tool (Integration Services), Multidimensional Database (Analysis Services) and lastly, A reporting Server (Reporting Services). When it comes to BI reporting, we could convince our customers with SQL Server Reporting Services as a complete BI platform because it has most of the stuff BI Features like drill down reports, Charts of various kinds, Dashboards….etc. But most of them asked for Gauges, showing us Business Objects Dashboards and, to have gauges on SSRS we had to use 3rd party tools such as Dundas Gauges.

But with SQL Server Reporting Services 2008, we are lucky to have built in gauges which we can use on SSRS reports and dashboards. I have put a screenshot of an example below.

Note that you can use gauges the same way you used charts. Its available in the toolbox of SQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio. Drag and drop a gauge to the report area and try out different properties. You have a vast range of gauge types available, and also you have the flexibility to customize the look and feel of the gauges, such as colours of the different parts of the gauge …etc.

Enjoy the new feature!!