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Five Reasons You Should Volunteer With Your Local SQL User Group and Host a SQL Saturday

I took the plunge this year and started volunteering for the North Texas SQL Server User Group. Originally I started attending because I wanted to learn more about SQL Server, but it didn’t take long before I realized that there was so much more to be gained from being there.

Why should you volunteer with […]

BI Ethics

The ethics of business intelligence is a touchy subject that many people don’t want to talk about. However, more attention in the past several years has been given to this subject mostly due to ethics scandals at huge companies such as Enron, Tyco, and WorldCom. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act came about because of such […]

Report Guidelines: Exporting Reports

This article is day four in a week of reporting articles.

Most users want to export reports to Excel so they can manipulate the data. If possible, set up the report for the cleanest exporting possible. This process starts when writing T-SQL. For example, one can extract only the date instead of a datetime value when […]

Report Guidelines: Know What Your User Wants and Your Target Number(s)

This article is day three in a week of reporting articles.

This seems like a no-brainer, but it is not as easy as you would think. Often your users will not know what they want and certainly not where to get it.

Don’t take direction from this guy.

Let’s say Milton, a purchasing agent, […]

Reporting Guidelines: Standardize Your Layouts

This article is day two in a week of reporting articles.

Create standard layouts for both landscape and portrait reports and have them approved by management. Many larger companies have Corporate Identity Guidelines created by marketing experts with standards already defined for marketing and sales documents. Adhere to the standards religiously. If creating your […]

Reporting Guidelines: Requesting Reports

This article is day one in a week of reporting articles.

If you are going to become a business intelligence ninja, start at the beginning. You need to develop standard procedures for report creation. They include:

Who can request reports?
Who approves their creation?
Who assigns priority of your work?
How […]

Basic Reporting Guidelines - Week of Articles

A good percentage of my day is spent writing reports. The report formats could be SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS), Crystal Reports, M2M VFP reports, or ODBC Excel Spreadsheets. The latter three methods usually involve T-SQL, which I write by hand using TOAD for SQL Server or the SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS). In the […]

You’ve Just Taken Your First Step Into a Larger World

I love learning new things.

I couldn’t help but in a small way feel like Luke Skywalker when he first felt the force. I’ve been trying to get access to a SQL 2008 Server for the longest time, and it’s finally happened. I wrote and published my first SQL […]

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