The FAMCare Blog

Getting Data Out of Your System

Posted by Chris Freund on Oct 19, 2016 9:00:00 AM

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As an administrator or Power User of your FAMCare system, you’ve got entry forms set up, you’ve set your pathways, you have a lot of data in your system that has been entered by your users, and now you need to get it out in a format that is useful and valuable!

Getting "Down and Dirty" With Reporting

You already know about some of the various methods of built in reporting. Predefined reports are formatted SSRS (SQL Server Reporting Services), which allow you to schedule and auto-deliver reports. The advanced ad-hoc query system allows those who know SQL and the data structures to get data into spreadsheets and also setup quick reports (optionally with graphs). The data extractor is a very visual way to download filtered and sorted data to spreadsheets on an ad-hoc basis.

Each method has its advantages. Because of the fluid nature of reporting needs at a social services agency, we’ve found most administrators set up quick reports to get most of their data out because of the flexibility and ability to lock down access based on security groups. Also, quick reports can be coded to limit access to client data based on provider hierarchies or other access rules.

EXCEL Magic With FAMCare...

So, built into FAMCare there are a lot of ways to get your data out in a meaningful format. But what if your organization has an EXCEL guru or Tableau wizard?

These are great reporting tools, but difficult to implement in an agency because those who access these reports can generally see everything for all clients with a traditional database linkage to these products. That works for a power reporting user who can see all data, but often larger organizations need to “silo” their data based on roles. Having access to all data may violate agency rules or even break the law.

Or, the power reporting user is not physically in a location where the database resides. A direct link to the database may not be possible, and opening up database access over the internet poses security risks.

Odata?

This is where the FAMCare report linkage tool comes into play. With this module, you expose quick reports to these third party tools using an OData feed. Because the rules of the quick reports are enforced, and access to the OData feed requires a FAMCare userid and password, data is locked down based on the coding of the quick report. So, only those quick reports available to that user are exposed, and any coded access within the quick report is enforced. Your EXCEL gurus and Tableau wizards can code their reports, and then share the design with other users who may get different results based on their roles.

A word of caution when using third party reporting tools. Most will store data in an unencrypted fashion on the local machine where they are authored. Care must be taken because of this, and possibly less granular quick reports need to be coded to minimize client identifying information. For those users who do need more granular data in their reports, you might consider a termserv style connection to a hosted server connected to the FAMCare system to limit this exposure.

With the FAMCare report linkage tool, endless possibilities exist for getting your data out in a useful and valuable way.

In the upcoming weeks we will be launching our Odata Reporting initiative with short videos that show you how it all works... stay tuned!  However - if you want an EARLY BIRD look... register here for more information.

Topics: Insider, FAMCare Tips and Tools, FAMCare

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