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ART - Administrative Reporting Tool and
Crystal Reports

The Data Warehouse houses a database of historic "snapshots in time" of data from the UCAR Bi-Tech IFAS system and other central databases. These snapshots are taken once a week on Tuesday night and at month end. The data that is archived in the Data Warehouse has been selected for its integral part in the effective reporting of financial and administrative information for specific periods of time in the past, as well as for trend analysis over multiple years.

Principle areas of reporting include:

  • Financial Summaries
  • Revenue and Expenditure Detail
  • Purchasing
  • Encumbrances
  • Human Resources
  • Contract Management
  • Fixed Assets
  • Travel
  • Administrative Aids - Utility Reports

These reports are available through two primary venues: Crystal Reports (a stand-alone application for PCs running Microsoft Windows - used by report designers and developers), and the Web interface known as "ART" (accessible on any computer with Internet Explorer or Netscape Web browser availability). The majority of the UCAR administrative users' business intelligence reporting needs are more than met with the wide range of over 400 pre-designed reports available via ART.

ART is available by approval to all of our administrative staff members that have requested and received access privileges to the system, and have access to the Internet via a standard web browser.

Crystal Reports is software that must be purchased and maintained by your division. Access to the Data Warehouse via Crystal Reports is also available by approval to all of our administrative staff members that have requested Crystal Reports access privileges to the system. For purchasing information regarding Crystal Reports, contact the F&A Contracts office. Local System Administrators with questions regarding the installation of Crystal Reports and establishing connectivity to the UCAR Data Warehouse would contact the F&A IT Help Desk for assistance.

For more information to help you determine whether you should be using Crystal Reports in additional to ART, see "Which Reporting Tool Should I Use?"

Below you will find online documentation, FAQ's, and information to help you with the tools used to access the Data Warehouse.

Getting Started with the Data Warehouse

New to ART or Crystal Reports? The following topics should get you up and running quickly.

Requesting an ART or Crystal Reports DW access account

All users that will be using either ART or Crystal Reports must have a Bi-Tech IFAS user account. If you don't have one yet, please fill out a Request for Access form and submit it according to the directions on the form. When filling out the form, select the Data Warehouse/ART account option as well as the Bi-Tech option. If you also need access as a Crystal Reports user, select the Crystal Reports Writer access option too (all Crystal Reports writers must have an ART account and a Bi-Tech account).

After your request has been approved and processed, we will contact you with information on how to connect to the Data Warehouse systems for the first time.

ART Tutorials and Presentations

Welcome to Crystal Enterprise – Familiarize yourself with basic ART functionality and navigation with this online tutorial that is accessible at any time via the "Help" button in the ART application.

1-on-1 Orientation Session – Provided by one of our F&A IT staff members, this is a brief (30 min. typically) walk-through for one or two users of the basic functionality of our ART system. This includes practical tips to help enhance your effective use of this system with your particular work responsibilities. This is generally conducted in person, but may be scheduled as a phone conference. Contact the F&A IT Help Desk to arrange these sessions.

1-to-Many Orientation Session – This is a modified version of the traditional 1-on-1 Orientation Session, provided by F&A IT for workgroups of up to 10 people at their location. First, a general overview is presented to the group using a network presentation - typically 15-20 minutes in length. Afterwards, the F&A IT staff member conducting the session visits each of the participants' offices for brief 1-on-1 follow-up questions during the hour following the group presentation. Contact the F&A IT Help Desk to arrange these sessions.

Crystal Reports Training and Peer Groups

Crystal Reports Training opportunities are available throughout the year with regional technical training vendors such as New Horizons, SAP/Business Objects (the producer of Crystal Reports software), private training consultants and more. Contact the the F&A IT Help Desk (x8888) to speak with one of the F&A IT staff for suggestions of training opportunities on the Front Range.

CRUSERS - When you are provided with Crystal Reports access to the Data Warehouse here at UCAR, you automatically become a member of the report designers group "CRUSERS" (Crystal Reports USERS) and are added to their e-mail alias. This is a peer support group made up of beginning to advanced users of Crystal Reports and the UCAR Data Warehouse. CRUSERS meets once or twice a year, and are available to one another all year long via the group e-mail alias for suggestions and support.

We can recommend the following independent Crystal Reports consultants that have great user forums, newsletters, and product highlights - and some of the sponsor list servers for designers to share Crystal Reports experience and questions:

F&A IT is actively participating in the Financial Tools project.  Look for enhancements of the reporting from both of these systems as this reengineering project goes forward through fiscal year 2009.

 

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