Why Learn Reports?
I don’t have the stats to prove it readily available, but I know that when our Realm customers ask “How do I…,” the answer is often “Reports.”
Reports in Realm allow you to do many things, including:
- Send mass emails
- Send any or all of your members a link to sign up for your Realm site
- Deactivate accounts in mass
- Add any number of people to a group or pathway
- Create mailing labels
- Create a customized list of data that can be opened in a spreadsheet program
- Create a pictorial (or non-pictorial) church directory
But to do any of these, you must first create a list. And that’s done by running a search.
For Mighty Searches
To be sure, Reports lets you search deeply into your data. By “deeply,” I mean you can generate a list of information about your members based on any criteria you track: from marital status, to age, to giving habits.
This intimidates some Realm newcomers, but it’s not hard. And, take it from this non-technical English teacher, it’s actually kind of fun!
Suppose you’re sending cards to everyone 18 or younger celebrating a birthday in July, so you need some mailing labels.
So, this will involve two procedures:
- Finding everybody who needs a birthday card
- Turning that list into a sheet of mailing labels
First, we click Insights, then Reports.
Then, we create a new report and give it a name. The name lets us save the report to run later, if needed.
Now, we create a statement of attributes that will tell Realm what to find in the search. I know that sounds very technical, but, trust me, you do it every day. A statement is just a sentence, and attributes are just the characteristics you want to search for. To a car dealer, you say “Show me all the red cars made domestically this year.” The sentence is your statement and “red”, “domestic,” and “made this year” are the attributes.
So we want to tell Realm: “Show me all the people 18 or younger with birthdays in July.” We do it by choosing from the list of available attributes.
There are two attributes in this statement. Let’s take July birthdays first. Click Select an Attribute and choose Profile > Birthday.
Now you can specify the month of July.
Ignore Year only appears with Birthday and tells Realm you want to include individuals born in any year, not just the current one.
The other half of our statement instructs Realm to only return the names of people 18 or younger. Since this half of the statement must also be true for someone to be in our list, click And…
……then make your second choice of attributes:
Finally, click Save & Show Results, wait briefly, and view the results.
One Dough, Many Pastas
Now, the easy part. You can use the results of this search in so many ways. Use the two drop-down lists at the top of the Results tab to send emails to the people listed, add them to a group, etc. You can also turn the list into mailing labels, .csv exports for use in a spreadsheet program, and so on.
So, if you haven’t used them yet, experiment with Reports. It’s probably the single most powerful and multifunctional tool in Realm.