Business Objects – Report Design: Guidelines & Best Practices

Posted: June 30, 2011 in Business Objects, Reports, SAP
Tags: , , ,

Report Design: Guidelines & Best Practices

Introduction – Gives the basic guidelines/practices that could be followed in any Report Design.


  • Give meaningful names for the report tabs
  •  For complex reports, keep an overview report tab explaining the report
  • Use the Report properties to give more information about the report


  • Each Dataprovider should be given a name that reflects the usage of the data its going to fetch.
  • Select Objects in such a fashion that the resulting SQL gives a hierarchial order of Tables. This helps to achieve SQL Optimisation.
  • Avoid bringing lot of data into the report which will unnecessarily slow down the report performance.

Report Variables

  • Follow the naming convention of “var_” as prefix to each report level variable. This helps to identify Report Variables different from Universe Objects.
  •  Each variable that carries a calculation involving division should have IF <Denominator> <> 0 THEN <Object>. This avoids display of #DIV/0 errors in the report.
  •  Avoid having deep nested calculations which will slow down the performance of the report.

Report Structure

  • Make use of Report Templates when having most of the report with similar structures. This makes the work to move faster and consistant across.

Report Formats

  • All the reports should have page layout set in a printable manner. (Landscape/Portrait, Fit in 1 page wideor/and 1 page tall are different options).
  • All the reports should have page numbers in the footer.
  • All the reports should have Last Refreshed Timestamp in the header or footer.
  • All the above can be standardized by using templates

Report CELL Formats

  • All Numeric should be given Number format as per the language Eg. For German #.##00 for English #,##00.
  • Number cells should have a Right Alignment while Text cells should have Left Alignment.
  •  Cell showing Percentage should carry the % text (either Column Header or in each cell).
  • Indenting should ALWAYS be done using the Indenting Tool and NOT by using ” “.

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