Informer: College Report Server

Access

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All data viewable on Informer is property of Allegheny College. Your use of an Informer account and the data accessed through that account is no different from access granted to the Colleague system, including all restrictions and guidelines adhered to by the college. If you have any questions about these, please contact AIS or the responsible party in the particular department who maintains the data.

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Informer is a web based reporting tool that connects to the college’s administrative database system (Ellucian Colleague) to deliver accurate and consistent information from the shared repository used by all departments on campus.

To access Informer, open any web browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Chrome) and go to https://informer.allegheny.edu/informer/ Note that some old bookmarks to Informer may use an address which now will give a security warning. We recommend that you begin using the the URL above.

Sign in at the prompt using your Allegheny username and password – the same username and password you use for email.

Tip

A good general policy is to never share your password with anyone, share data with no one outside of the college, and shred any printed data when you are done with it.

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Basic Usage

 

After logging in, you will see a list of sets, datasources and tags (similar to Gmail labels) on the left, next to a list of reports.

You will only have access to the reports granted to you, probably only in the department you work for, but possibly others depending on your job function.

The Filter Reports column on the left can be used to shorten the list of reports shown in the Reports Listing column. Right-pointing arrows indicate your current filter settings. You can further limit the list by typing in the Search Reports box. Note that the search is on reports matching your current filter settings. To search all reports you have access to, be sure that All Sets, All Datasources, and All Tags have right-pointing arrows next to them.

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Informer allows you to quickly access your favorite reports. Mark a report as a favorite by clicking the star outline in the Favorite column. Click again to remove from your favorites. Quickly access your favorite reports by selecting My Favorites in the Filter Reports column.

If you have access to write new reports you can do so by clicking the New Report icon on the right above the Reports Listing.

The home page shows the first 20 reports in your filtered list. If there are more than 20 reports in your filter, there will be navigation options at the bottom of the page allowing you to display all, move to the first, last, next or previous page, or move to a particular page using the slider.

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Launch a report by clicking the Launch link next to the report name. You can also launch a report from the report details screen by clicking the Data tab.

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If the report allows entry of value(s) at runtime, enter the desired value(s) in the Runtime Parameters area. Required parameters are indicated by a red asterisk. After entering the values, click the Launch Report button. The report results will display in the Report Results area.

Informer reports are very interactive. You can click the column header on any column to sort your results by that column. Click again to change the sort order. You can also drag column headers to the indicated area to group by that column. Informer caches report results and so any of these display changes will happen fairly instantly.

To export your report results, click the Export Results icon. Hint: If your report has lots of columns you may need to scroll the browser window all the way to the right in order to see the Export Results icon.

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The Export Results icon will bring up a window with export options. Hint: If you had to scroll right to click the Export Results icon, you may now need to scroll left to see the Export Options window!

Select your desired export format and you will be given options related to that format. For example, the PDF export has an option to export group details on separate pages for reports which include groups (Page break in groups). Click Export to complete your export. Hint: If you are having trouble getting your report to export while using Internet Explorer, please see this tutorial.

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Advanced Usage

 

If you have access to write reports from scratch, you will be able to change the details of the
report from the Report Template tab or schedule reports to run automatically using the Schedules tab. If you are a “modify” or
“read only” user, you can still change some of the characteristics of the report for your own
personal use from the User Settings tab, but you can not change the master report. “Modify” users can add or remove columns.
“Read” users can change the sorting, grouping, or totaling. Both “modify” or “read” users will
also need to contact a power user or administrator to schedule a report to run automatically. (It is
extremely easy to set up, so don’t hesitate to ask for something to be scheduled!) If you wish to be granted greater access to modify or write reports, contact your AIS support person and/or your department supervisor.

If you are a user without access to write or modify reports, you can still customize a version of
these reports for your own personal use from the User Settings tab. Your changes will save on your personal profile only.
You will not affect other people’s use of this report.

If you find that you are unhappy with the changes you’ve made, simply click Clear Settings on the User Settings tab and the report will revert back to the originally written report headings, sorts, and groupings. Please note that customizing a report on your own will cause the report to ignore any future
updates to that report. One important thing to do if a report is giving you unusual results is to click Clear Settings.

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The Analytics and Charting tabs next to the Report Results tab on the Data page allow you to look at the data in the report results in interesting ways. For example, in a report that lists all the student vehicle registrations on campus, the Analytics tab can be used to list all the states student cars are registered in, as well as the number of registrations from each state. The same information could also be displayed in a pie chart or other graphical format on the Charting tab.

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