Too often I get to look at reports that are HUGE, with loads of columns and rows. But that is not how reports are supposed to be made. Reports are supposed to does told you before, aggregate data to give insight (my pipeline, total closed revenue this fiscal, …) or make little lists so that users can focus on those things that need attention (my open opportunities, accounts not visited this quarter, …). Huge reports most often are created for a different purpose, for exporting data out of Sales Cloud. There is a much better way to do this though, especially when you are extracting data to be used in other system or a datawarehouse. Let me show you how to use the BI Cloud Connector console for exporting data the right way.
Exporting data the right way
Yes, you read it right, the … BI … cloud connector console. A data extracting tool that is part of the BI platform 🙂 but does not use reports to do so !!! It allows you to do the following:
- You can specify what data object you want to extract
- You can for each object define what columns to include in the extract
- You can choose between complete extracts or incremental extracts
- You can extract once or schedule regular extracts as often as you want
What else would you need from a data extracting engine !
And the process is as simple as you would want it. The only hurdle to get over was the creation of a special role to be allowed to extract the data. It is off course not a tool you want to give to just any user.
There are 3 steps to go through when configuring the data extracts:
- Configure the Cloud Extract: what data to extract
- Configure the Storage: where to deliver the output files
- Manage Extract Schedules: when or how often to run the extract
And then there is off course the matter of knowing where to go to get the files.
Configuring Cloud Extract
Before you can start configuring the console, you first nee to know how to get there. You can access the BI Cloud Connector console using a URL like ‘https://<<host>>/biacm’.
Once inside the console, you can configure the extract by choosing what cloud application to extract data from, and within each cloud app what objects you want to extract.
For each of the objects, you can even indicate what columns you want to to extract. For my tests, I was lazy and I just extracted everything 🙂
Configuring External Storage
Before scheduling the extract, you need to specify where the extracted data needs to be delivered. There are 2 options:
- UCM (Universal Content Management) refers to the data storage available inside the Sales Cloud instance
- Cloud Storage Service can be used to extract the data towards a Oracle Storage Service instance
From here one, most of the setup is done. All that is left to do is schedule the extract to be executed once (simple extract) or on a regular basis, and wait till the results are available.
Finding the extracted data
I had specified to received the extracted data in UCM, the data storage that comes with Oracle Sales Cloud. So far I have only used it to import and export date for and from Sales Cloud Incentive Compensation, but it is used as a delivery mechanism by the BI Cloud connector console also. UCM can be accessed, if you have the needed role security assigned, through a URL like ‘https://<<host>>/cs’
Search for file starting with ‘file_’ and you will find all the exported csv files in a compressed zip format.
I hope this was useful, now do me a favor and replace all your export reports with proper data extracts 😉