Roxana Popistaşu
IT staff
The need for reports
• Statistical data for
• BnL (management, communication etc.)
• Libraries in the national network “”
• Consortium Luxembourg etc.
• Problem solving
• Help in
• decision making
• improving workflows
Data sources
Report creation
• different systems => different manners of
creating reports
• pre-requisites – knowledge about:
the system itself
the underlying database
the report creation tools / system (e.g. ARC - Cognos)
the relationship between system data and report system data
(e.g. Aleph data vs. ARC Packages)
• data confidentiality
Report distribution
• distribution of reports until now:
• request (email/conversation)
• creation
• send (email)
• problems:
several people receiving requests
redoing the same report for a different institution or period
difficult to find previous reports or versions of the same report
little to no trace of previous requests
=> The process is not scalable.
Report distribution
• Goals:
• one single platform for all reports
• homogeneous report presentation
• standard access for all users
• automation (as much as possible)
Report creation
• Aleph reports:
• ARC Report Studio
• Oracle SQL reports
Report creation - ARC
• Query Studio
• ad hoc queries
• simple reports and charts
• Report Studio
• advanced reports and charts (multiple-page,
• specific needs (complex prompts and filters)
• greater flexibility in calculating and formatting
• re-use
Report Studio
• Challenges
complexity of the tool*
little ExLibris documentation*
knowledge of the underlying database
difficulty dealing with error messages (+ access to
the log files on the ARC server)
“CM-REQ-4342 The client did something wrong.”
“You do not have permission to use Report Studio. Report Studio
is shutting down. For more information, contact the administrator.”
* IBM training: Cognos Report Studio (3 days)
Reports in Report Studio
Reports (multiple-page)
Reports (multiple-query & crosstabs)
• Crosstab reports are
used to show the
relationships between
three or more query
• Crosstab reports
show data in rows
and columns with
summarized at the
intersection points.
Reports (prompts)
Useful for:
• running the same report with
different parameters
• creating Report Views
Reports (conditional formatting)
• conditional styles
– better identify
exceptional or
unexpected results
• conditional layouts
– multilingual reports
– multiformat reports
(pdf, Excel, html etc.)
Reports (report views)
• Report views ≈ different outputs of the
same report
• the same report specification as the source report
• different properties:
prompt values, schedules, delivery methods, run
options, languages, and output formats
• Example:
• report: “Loans per month”
• possible report views: “BnL - Loans per month (pdf)”, “BnL Loans per month (xls)”, “Uni - Loans per month (yearly)”,
“Uni - Loans per month (trimester)”
Reports (schedule)
• recurring date and
time for running
• works with both
reports and report
• default values or
changed options
Report creation – Oracle SQL
• User friendly formatting and headers
• Excel friendly output (comma or tab
delimited files)
• Use of prompts for parameter values
• Use of UNIX cron jobs for scheduling
Report creation – Oracle SQL
From creation to distribution
From creation to distribution
• Create reports according to institutional needs
and preferences
• ARC: report views
• Oracle SQL: parameterized SQL scripts
• Schedule reports to run periodically
• ARC: use schedules for report views
• Oracle SQL: use UNIX cron jobs for SQL scripts
• Regularly check for new files & copy them to the
distribution platform (rsync, scp)
Report distribution platform
• Code name: ReD
• Web interface – three languages
• Functionalities:
• search for and browse existing reports
• request new reports
• request schedule modification or cancelation
ReD – Search
ReD – Browse
ReD – Schedules
ReD – New report
ReD – workflow new report
in ReD
decision of the person
in charge of the network,
consortium, system etc.
analysis &
creation of the report
(ARC, SQL etc.)
notification sent to the user requesting
the report and the other
users of the same institution
in ReD
notification sent all other
(interested) users about the existence
of a new “standard report”
ReD – Preferences
ReD – Administration
ReD – Manage translations
Future steps
• creation of new reports and integration into ReD
• update (and possible improvement) of reports
when switching to production Aleph v21 and
ARC v3.0
• integration of other systems (,, websites etc.)
• different levels of access
Aleph reports
from request to response
Questions, remarks, suggestions?
Roxana Popistaşu

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