For several years, Oracle has been indicating that Crystal Reports was a technology of the past and has encouraged customers to take advantage of BI Publisher. Well that day has come! PeopleTools 8.55 will not support the use of Crystal Reports. Don’t be alarmed, the capabilities now available to you will make you wish you never had a three-ring binder full of static, stale, snapshot reports. The tools (Pivot Grids, Simplified Analytics) that will replace many of your old reports will provide you with fresh, actionable data to make better decisions to run your business. For those situations where you need static data, month-end for example, BI Publisher is your tool of choice.
Here are some of the new features that Oracle has built into BI Publisher in PeopleTools 8.55.
- PeopleTools has created a BI Publisher report user role (XMLP Report User) that allows users to schedule and run reports. Users with this role can also open a majority of BI Publisher report definitions in read-only mode.
- Report developers can delete report definitions from the results grid of the report definition search page.
- PeopleTools delivers a copy report definition page that simplifies report development by enabling report developers to copy report definitions.
- BI Publisher for PeopleSoft now enables you to develop PDF reports that users can edit and then submit the changes to be saved in a database. The submittable PDF report functionality is available for delivered self-service reports and for customer-created reports.
- Beginning in PeopleTools 8.55 you can change the data source of an existing report definition. When a user clicks the link the data source type and data source ID field become editable. An option to cancel data source changes is available, allowing a report developer to revert back to initial state.
- PeopleTools enables you to include attachments from external sources with BI Publisher PDF report output. The source attachments are converted to PDF format and then merged with the main report. The report is then displayed to the end users or delivered to report manager. To convert attachments to PDF output, BI Publisher utilizes Oracle’s Outside In Technology (OIT), a product that enables the transformation and control of more than 600 file formats, including documents from office suites, specialty formats, and legacy files.
- You can distribute reports using email to recipients that do not have PeopleSoft user profiles. This feature enables you to distribute BI Publisher reports to external users whose email addresses are stored in the database, file server, or other location.
For questions regarding your upgrade to PeopleTools 8.55, taking advantage of the new features, or help with creating your new reports and analytics, please reach out to us.