Cross Object Reporting For Salesforce Users

We are very happy to see that our new offering on the AppExchange, Apsona Multi-Step Reporting (MSR), is attracting a good deal of interest. Users seem to enjoy the flexibility that the app offers. It imposes no restrictions on how to access objects, nor the number of objects you can access in a single report. It lets you traverse dependencies in either direction (parent-to-child or child-to-parent), and can handle multiple dependencies between the same pairs of objects. For example, you can create a report spanning the Campaign (parent) – Opportunity (child)-Opportunity Contact Role and back to up the chain to Contact (parent). Such structures are difficult to achieve with the native Salesforce reporting. Another plus with Apsona MSR is the ability to run reports without having to create report types.

To help you build a report in Apsona MSR, here are a few tips:

  • Reports are built in steps.
  • Each step retrieves data from one object.
  • Each step carries its own filter conditions, independent of the other steps, and these conditions can be cross-object.
  • Steps are linked to previous steps via lookup fields.
  • To see linkages, select the id field or the look up field you would like to link in each step.

You can build a powerful report incrementally in steps. You can have any number of steps in a single report. For example, let’s say you would like to invite to a Christmas luncheon all the contacts associated with the closed/won Opportunities or donations for the last 3 consecutive years, and you would like to retrieve the Contact records to set up the invitations. Here are the steps you can use to get the data with Apsona MSR.

    Step 1: Get the Contacts from the contact role object and filter by opportunities for the year 2010.
    Step 2: Get the Contacts from the contact role object and filter by opportunities for the year 2011. Link the contacts to the Step 1.
    Step 3: Get the Contacts from the contact role object and filter by opportunities for the year 2012. Link the contacts to Step 4: Save and run.

    Another example use case is to find the person/user who created an opportunity and the person/user who closed the opportunity. Such a report can be obtained in just 2 steps with the Opportunity and Opportunity History objects. With Apsona’s cross object reporting, you can access the User object from the Opportunity and Opportunity History objects and pull in the users who have created and closed Opportunities. So here is an example of working from the Opportunity object down to the Opportunity History object and going up the chain to the User object. With an additional step you can also get the number of Opportunities (count) closed by a person/user by using the powerful metrics feature.

    Once the data for your report has been retrieved, you can visualize the data in charts, groups and matrices. Grouping can be single level or up to five levels. Pivoting or transposing data is a powerful visualization this app offers. Filtering, sorting, drilling-down and summarizing data can now be down in seconds.

    Such reports and pivot visualizations are not possible to build in native Salesforce and yet this information is invaluable to any organization. These are just a couple of examples of the kinds of reports you can build with Apsona MSR. You can now create reports to extract and display data instantly from your Salesforce org, without depending on others for coding or IT involvement.

    We offer a free trial of this app on the AppExchange and will be happy to help you if needed. We can be contacted at

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