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IdeaExchange Top Hits: A Formula Goes on a Date
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IdeaExchange Top Hits: A Formula Goes on a Date

The Salesforce IdeaExchange team shares an update for a popular feature that's been in demand for a while: dates in report formulas. But there's a twist — read on to find out what row level formulas are and how you can suggest and vote for future Salesforce features.

In the last IdeaExchange Top Hits: Where Are They Now post, we covered two features for related lists (additional fields and filtering) that were prioritized by True to the Core session attendees at Dreamforce ‘18. The delivery of those features, slated for the Summer ‘19 release, will make it easier to consume and interact with information in related lists.

But the True to the Core attendees also wanted to give some attention to a longstanding request for reports: being able to summarize data using date-based formulas. During the in-room pilot of our prioritization concept, they upvoted the feature to the number three spot, ensuring it would be considered in the next release planning cycle.

With that planning cycle recently completed, we caught up with Anusha Surepeddi, product manager on the analytics team, who is addressing the original idea — and more — through a feature she calls “row level formulas.”

 

When the Power of Ideas Combine

Headed into Dreamforce, Anusha and the analytics product team had a question on their mind: was the idea about using dates in report formulas really still a top need, or had it just amassed a large number of votes over time because it was an old idea? Seeing the popularity of the idea in the room at Dreamforce answered the question clearly and helped them prioritize a feature to address it for their product roadmap.

While the original idea centered around date formulas, the team was also paying attention to another “vintage” idea about creating custom calculations at the row level of reports. Playing matchmaker, Anusha and team paired the two ideas together when scoping the feature, which helps report users organize and summarize data to answer questions such as:

  • When was the last time we contacted a customer?
  • How long, from the project start date, did it take to close an opportunity?
  • What’s the average number of records created within a given timespan?

 

The key to successful relationships with customers is strong communication. Using the first question as an example, a report of customers sorted by the last contact date can — with some mental math — help identify those that have been neglected. However, adding a row level formula comparing the current date to the last contact date easily shows the number of days that have passed. Sorting the column allows you to quickly see for which customers you’ve been a relationship superstar, and others where it may be time to show a little love.

The initial beta functionality for the Summer ‘19 release will allow comparisons via date/time functions, and is currently in development for the Lightning Experience. Additional functions will be supported upon the general availability of the feature, planned for the Winter ‘20 release.

 

Help Prioritize Future Releases

Speaking of the Winter ‘20 release, there are a few more days left to help prioritize features for Winter ‘20 and beyond. Join the IdeaExchange Reimagined Chatter group to access the prioritization survey, available through February 3. In this latest pilot of our prioritization concept, we’re asking you to rank the importance of 10 ideas, three of which are analytics related:

 

Participating in the exercise will help shape our products, and the IdeaExchange itself. Provide your feedback on the concept and our broader plans to reimagine the IdeaExchange in the Chatter group and also learn of opportunities to meet the IdeaExchange team live (Atlanta area user group members: meet the team on February 22, 2019).

 

Reminder: the feature information in this post is subject to our forward-looking statements.

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