SAP Crystal Reports Review

The ability to set parameters, especially the cascading parameters, is the most valuable features for us.


Valuable Features

The ability to set parameters, especially the cascading parameters, is the most valuable features for us.

Improvements to My Organization

We provide solutions to other organizations, so invariably the end reports save our clients time and, of course, money.

The example that comes to mind was where a medical client had a monthly utilization report that took 14 days to complete manually as it involved using MS Access and Excel. After the report was created in Crystal Reports, it took less than 30 seconds to run and it also highlighted data entry errors that could be fixed more efficiently, so a suite of error/exception reports had to be created also.

Room for Improvement

The linking feature between tables has always been a bit buggy, which is not good because it is really the core of ensuring that the returned data is correct. If one tries to enforce the links created as per the underlying data source, invariably it falls over and results in an error message.

The cascade parameters limit of 1000 records, which although can be increased via the registry, if you have admin rights, can result in report performance issues. Isn't there a better way of doing this?

Being able to have formulas that make up the description for value parameters, potentially on the fly, and then being able to display the parameter value and/or description selected by the user on the report, would be great also

I actually wrote a blog post of the things I wished Crystal Reports could do here: http://maximumimpactsolutions.co.uk/blog/comments.asp?bd=110. Some of the things may have ready been implemented.

Use of Solution

I've been using it for four years.

Deployment Issues

We have had no issues with deployment.

Stability Issues

There have been no issues with the stability.

Scalability Issues

We have had no issues scaling it.

Customer Service and Technical Support

I've never needed to use customer service/technical support.

Previous Solutions

I've been using this since v7.

Initial Setup

It's straightforward.

Implementation Team

Implemented it in-house, and there was nothing complex about it.

ROI

Our ROI on Crystal Reports is well over 1000%, as we offer both training and consultancy solutions to our clients.

Other Advice

Crystal Reports is a great little reporting tool for a myriad of data sources that provides the user a nice user-friendly GUI, which means that your report creation can be achieved quickly.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: We offer training and consulting of Crystal Reports for our clients.
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