Posted on: 16th October 2019, 11:09 am
In the latest Ometis blog, 10 Tips for using Qlik NPrinting, Chris Lofthouse provides a helpful list to get the most from your software.
Qlik NPrinting is a great product which automates the build and distribution of static reports to internal and external recipients, so I’ve compiled 10 tips for using Qlik NPrinting to help you utilise the platform efficiently and effectively.
Qlik NPrinting is completely dependent on a Qlik app to acquire data and visualisations to populate the report templates. Therefore, it is important that Qlik developers ensure the Qlik apps are NPrinting-friendly. In addition, although NPrinting reports are static, Qlik apps rarely are, so here are some of my tips and tricks that will make working with Qlik and NPrinting that little bit easier.
10 Tips For Using Qlik NPrinting
Provide titles for all objects you intend to use. By adding a title, it makes it easier to identify the object you want to add in Qlik NPrinting. You can hide the title and NPrinting will still pull it through. When adding a title, it’s best to specify the object type where possible, followed by a description. For example, ‘KPI – Max Sales’.
If possible, design the sheet and objects to match the layout and size they will have in the report. This can reduce trial and error for obtaining the best aspect ratio for your Qlik NPrinting reports.
Remove any unnecessary text from the object i.e. titles, legends and/or axis labels. As the reports are static, these items are often unnecessary and can make the report look noisy – distracting from the message.
Use colours that are consistent throughout the report. Most reports are used to communicate findings, rather than analysing the underlying data. Therefore, it is more common to use colour to corporatise the look of a report than for other purposes i.e. colouring as a measure.
Where possible, hide scroll bars on objects. Recipients of static reports can’t interact with the visualisations, so scroll bars add nothing but noise to the report. It will also give the visualisation more space to display.
Avoid using visualisations which struggle to show all value labels i.e. distribution plots. Otherwise you risk recipients wondering what the dots mean, which offers little insight.
To ensure Qlik NPrinting renders the image as you see the Qlik dashboard sheets/images, set the Data Displayed Height and Width to that of your monitor resolution. For example, I set mine to 1920 px (Width) x 1080 px (Height).
Do make use of the name property. It makes it easier to identify which placeholders are associated to each object. It also improves the robustness of the report, as you can switch objects without changing the placeholders. For example, if you want to change the object powering a placeholder, you would only need to remove/rename the old object and import the new object, naming it the same as the placeholder and Qlik NPrinting will handle the rest.
Qlik Sense specific: Creating NPrinting specific apps, with all the data and specifically designed visualisations can make developing in NPrinting much easier, compared to connecting to multiple Qlik apps – which may impact performance. However, if you want to reduce the number of Qlik apps you maintain, it is worth noting that Qlik NPrinting imports objects from work (users private sheets), community and base sheets of published apps. Therefore, it is possible to create NPrinting specific sheets within a published app that Qlik users do not see (if not published to the community). This is a solution we’ve used before, and advise you change the owner of those sheets to the service account so they are not changed or deleted unintentionally.
When distributing reports via e-mail, do link back to the Qlik Sense applications. It offers your Qlik users a seamless experience and promotes user adoption.
Hopefully you will find these tips and tricks useful for your implementation of QlikView/Qlik Sense and Qlik NPrinting. If you have any others please share them in the comments section below and we may add them to the list!
By Chris Lofthouse