by Mandy Doward - 11/10/2017

Working with PIVOT Tables In SQL Server Queries

Many data analysts will be familiar with exploring data using Pivot Tables in Excel workbooks. The following example shows the detail sales data for bike related products, and an Excel Pivot Table created from that data:

The Totaldue values are grouped by Quarter and product.

by Mandy Doward - 28/6/2017

Specifying a No Rows Message for an SSRS/Report Builder Report


I’m sure we have all come across a scenario where a parameter report has allowed a user to specify a combination of conditions that results in no matching records for a dataset behind a region in an SSRS report.

If the report has headers, footers or textboxes then there may be some output produced when the report is run to make it obvious that there is no valid data for the report, as in the following example:

by Kelly Doward - 21/6/2017

Microsoft Access Forms - Set up a database to open in a form

There is a feature in Access, which allows you to use a form to front end your database. This blog will help you create a basic form and then set this form to be open, when you load the database.

Creating a Basic Form
Using Access Options

by Kelly Doward - 26/5/2017

Introduction to Excel VBA Part 2

If you didn’t catch part one, click here.

In this blog we will explore other methods of selecting cells and ranges of cells.

by Kelly Doward - 24/5/2017

Using The DateDif Function in Microsoft Excel

Have you ever needed to work out the difference between two dates? DateDif allows you to do this, and show the result in Days, Months, Years, Month Days or Year Months.

by Mandy Doward - 24/5/2017

What Is Report Builder?

Report Builder is a report creation tool from Microsoft enabling you to develop simple to complex reports and dashboards based on data from a variety of data sources such as SQL Server, Azure, Oracle, DB2, Teradata databases, SAP, XML,ODBC sources.

Report Builder implements the same Report Designer that is provided by SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) and the SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) development tool.

by Mandy Doward - 19/5/2017

What Is Cloud Computing?

Cloud Computing is basically where on demand resources are delivered over the Internet. Private (On Premise) and Public (Hosted) Cloud solutions can be implemented to provide secure and flexible deployments. Three key terms associated with Cloud are Internet, Virtualisation and Clustering. These three layers enable us to deploy all or part of our business systems as Cloud based or “as a Service” (aaS).

The aaS (as a Service) suffix, is synonymous with cloud computing.

by Kelly Doward - 18/5/2017

Merging Shapes using Microsoft PowerPoint

There are occasions when you can’t quite find the shape you’re looking for. With the Merge Shape tools, you are able to construct your own shapes. This blog will take you through the steps to creating your own shapes using the Union command from the Merge Shape Tools.

by Kelly Doward - 17/5/2017

Creating Forms in Microsoft Word

Using a form for data entry is an excellent way to control what you allow a user to select and where you want them to type. Forms look professional, and have the ability to save the entered data as a text file. This data can then be easily imported into excel for data analysis.

by Mandy Doward - 28/4/2017

Monitoring Logical and Physical Reads & Buffer Cache Usage

Many SQL Server performance problems will come down to poor physical disk performance or inadequate memory resource. This article takes a look at the Buffer Cache and some of the tools that we have for troubleshooting poorly performing SQL Server instances and queries.

Throughout this article we will meet a number of Dynamic Management Views, Functions and System Views: