Table of Contents

Enhanced Business Intelligence - Tips & Tricks for Advanced Users

Mitchell Paul-Soumis Updated by Mitchell Paul-Soumis

Read Time: 3 mins

Business Intelligence is more than your basic reports. In other articles, the Reports dashboard was shown, with the variety of default reports available to all subscribers detailed there. From there, Custom Reports were explored, with their general creation process detailed within that article. In this article, advanced features will be explored, aiming to provide you with ways to maximize your reporting.

Saving Edits to Reports

Whenever you modify a report, whether to update custom fields or add new fields, these changes need to be saved to the correct folder in your instance. For Personal (unpublished) reports, these folders, titled “accounts” and “financials”, need to be used when saving new dashboards.

If the customized report is saved anywhere outside either of these folders, it won't appear on the Reports dashboard. This includes the root directory, or having these two folders contained within subfolders.

These folders can only be created during new report creation by using the "Create Report" button on the main Reports dashboard. Both an Accounts report and a Financial Report have to be created and saved.

The created reports don't need to have any data created, but they will appear in your list until filled in or removed. This process only needs to be performed once - the folders will persist even if the generated reports are removed.

Using Custom Filters

Sonar's Reporting system offers a series of preset filters to help organize and categorize your data. However, these filters may not satisfy all use cases. To account for that, Sonar's Business Intelligence dashboard offers the ability to create Custom Filters using an expression editor. The editor allows you to create flexible logic filters using AND/OR/NOT and any comparison indicators (</>/=/etc.). Custom filters allow you to combine multiple filters when either alone would be insufficient.

Creating a custom filter is done through an Explore. From any Explore, expand the filters menu, then check the “Custom Filter” box. This will add a new filter at the bottom of the list, where you can enter your custom expression and measures within them.

Using custom filters can be complicated. For this reason, we recommend reviewing the in-depth Looker documentation on using custom filters, available here. For more information on using custom expressions, refer to this additional piece of Looker documentation. Especially important is the "Seeing all selections" section of this document, due to the potential size of Sonar BI Explores.

Customizing Your Data Export

Getting your report data out of Sonar is one half of a whole process. Being able to use your report data with other applications is the other half. While Sonar's BI Reporting does tend to follow fairly transparent naming, this doesn't mean that all headers will automatically be compatible with all applications. For this reason, Sonar's reporting module supports customizable headers during table exploration. This allows you to modify headers, and save a customized dashboard with values that your other resources are expecting, without changing the data.

  1. From any Report Explore, click on the “Edit” button, followed by the “Series” tab:
  2. Expand the dropdown for the header that needs to be changed within the “Customization” section, then enter your desired header name:

The header changes will take effect immediately, and the newly customized Look can be saved to the dashboard of your choosing, ready for export.

Where to Learn More

There are a few external resources you can use to learn more:

Google Cloud Skills Boost Course 04 Exploring Data with Looker

Google Cloud Skills Boost Course 04 Analyzing and Visualizing Data in Looker

How did we do?

Report Licenses

Sonar's Business Intelligence: Overview