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Understanding report time periods

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Many reports will limit the included stories or responses to a specific date period.

For example, you might create reports for stories:

  • published after 1 January 2015
  • published before 30 June 2020
  • submitted in the last 2 months

What can be filtered by date?

When you create your report you can choose to filter on various dates:

  • Date the story was submitted
  • Date the story was published
  • Date a response was submitted
  • Date a response was published

Understanding fixed and relative dates

In the examples above, there are two different kinds of date filter.

Fixed date filters, like 1 January 2015 and 30 June 2020. Whenever you run your report, these dates never change.

Relative date filters, like "the last 2 months". Whenever you run your report, it includes the last 2 months of data, not fixed calendar dates.

What happens to dates when a scheduled report runs?

A scheduled report is run automatically by Care Opinion on a schedule like "every week" or "every month" or "every 3 months".

Obviously, you don't want every new report to be the same as the last one, so we ignore any fixed dates on the report.

Also, the report needs some kind of time period, otherwise it would include more and more data as time goes by, and eventually it would be too big for us to run.

If the report has a relative time period explicitly defined, like "last 2 months", we will use that time period each time we run the report.

But if no relative time period is explicitly defined for the report, we use the schedule frequency to set a relative time period. So for example, if your report is delivered monthly, we will use data from "last month". If your report is delivered weekly, we will use data from "last week".

Creating a scheduled report with schedule frequency and date periods which differ

Occasionally, you might want a report where the filtering period is different to the schedule period. For example: "Every month, send me a report which includes the last 3 months data."

You can achieve this by making sure you set an explicit relative date filter for the report. When we run the scheduled report, we will respect the filter you have set, whatever the frequency of the schedule.

Last updated 12/03/2021

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