SharePoint Webcasts: Reporting Services for the Really Really Good Looking

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imageLast year, Peter Serzo and I presented at the SharePoint Best Practices Conference in DC. We did an extremely serious talk called “SharePoint and SQL Reporting Services 2008 for the really really good looking” which rated rather well. As part of this, we recorded a bunch of screencasts that have never seen the light of day, so I thought that some would benefit from this being released to a wider audience.

Note: This post and content is really going make utterly no sense unless you have watched Zoolander. Even if you have seen the movie, before you launch into the webcasts, some scene setting is required.

The business need

Some time ago, Peter and I were contracted by the Derek Zoolander School for the Really, Really Good Looking after Derek saw Microsoft’s new SharePoint diagram when he accidentally picked up a “Computerworld” magazine. Apart from matching Derek’s suit colour rather nicely, the diagram captivated his imagination with the notion of “Insights”.

Zoolander thought that “Insight”, sounded like the perfect look to follow up from the highly successful “Magnum”, which he used to save the Malaysian prime ministers life. He took the diagram to his wife, and demanded that he must have “Insights” at all costs.


Zoolander’s wife saw the business problem that “Insights” would help to address. You see, the Derek Zoolander School for the Really, Really Good Looking, at great expense, custom developed an ERP system to manage everything you needed to know about male models. The system was called the “Computerised Records for Attractive People”…


The CRAP system stored all sorts of interesting information about male models, such as tracking their “hotness”, as well as important detail such as stated age versus actual age, and any cosmetic procedures that they have undertaken. After a long and expensive consultation, Peter and I concluded that SharePoint 2007, integrated with SQL Reporting Services, was the perfect solution to create the all important “Insights” that Zoolander so desperately needed.

As a result, we conducted a project kickoff meeting with Hansel and Peter tried to explain the architecture of reporting services using a nice diagram.


… but we worked out pretty quickly that this was not the way to explain how it all worked to poor old Hansel…


So instead, we went the live demo route. Being male models, custom development was totally out of the question. This solution had to be done using all out of the box methods in a quick and easy manner. Below are the four live demos that were recorded and now you can use them as inspiration for your own male modelling school.

  • Our first webcast illustrates how we were able to create a meaningful report from the CRAP system within five minutes.
  • The second webcast expanded on this idea, by illustrating how reports can be parameterised and linked together for drilldown reporting.
  • The third demo modifies the user profile store to allow for recording of each users unique ID in the CRAP system
  • The last webcast strings this all together for the final demonstration where we pimp the report to make it dynamic with no custom code.


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The 5 minute report

Drilling down with Derek
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User Profiles for the really really good looking

Pimp my report


We hope you find some value from these webcasts and we look forward to hearing about your hot new look as a result!

Thanks for reading



Paul Culmsee

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One Response to SharePoint Webcasts: Reporting Services for the Really Really Good Looking

  1. If you find SSRS to be too complex, please take a look at Windward Arrow as it provides a SharePoint reporting system that is a lot easier to use, much more powerful, and much much easier to install.

    thanks – dave

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