Zoho Creator : Say it with charts

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Today, the way people consume information has evolved – we look for information that conveys the whole idea in a single step. A study at the University of Minnesota, found that visual aids are 43 percent more effective in persuading your audience than text alone. While compiling large amounts of data in our business reports, there is often a need to answer several questions to arrive at meaningful decisions. Say for an instance, while creating sales reports, you often have to answer questions like – “What are the monthly sales of your stores in the north-east region?” or “What are the highest revenue generating products of your store?”. Pivot Tables and Pivot Charts can help you visualize data and make informed decisions.

Apart from making data collection downright simple, Zoho Creator can help you with your reporting and analytical needs. Pivot Tables from Zoho Creator can help you slice and dice your data in the following ways:

Break down your data
Let’s assume you own ‘Starmark Stationary Company’. You would want to keep a regular check on the products’  performance in the market and the sales  from each of the stores in the East, West and Central regions of the state. Pivot Table swings into action, doing hours worth of work in an instant.

Region-wide Sales Report

Design dynamic layouts
Once you have created your pivot table, you might want to improve the readability of the report and make it more attractive. With pivot tables you can easily move fields around to tell different stories about your data. The following are the different layouts that could be created based on the source data set.

Quarterly Sales report- Layout-1

Yearly Sales Report- Layout-2

Discover trends and patterns
To compare the quarterly sales data of all your stores, select ‘Quarter’ from the drop-down list using the ‘filter‘ option in your pivot table. Based on this report, you could infer that the ‘binder’ is the most fast-selling product across all regions. Using this trend, you could decide to stock more binders in your inventory.

Yearly Sales Report - trend

Visualize data in seconds
Now that you’ve summarized your data using pivot tables, you could use pivot charts to visualise data in a more comprehensive manner.

Regional Sales Report- Charts

Pivot tables come in handy when you are working with large data sets in your applications. So go ahead,and start saying it with charts! Tell us how you’ve used pivots to visualize your data better.

Supercharging your Business: Spreadsheets were not designed for Collaboration.

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Collaboration on spreadsheets is like playing a Chinese puzzle. There are many instances, where we co-edit spreadsheets with our colleagues. Most times, we communicate and share these changes via e-mail, with the updated versions. This back and forth e-mail communication can tie us up in confusion of different data versions. The second problem is, when spreadsheets are shared, anybody having access to the sheet can alter data.  It does not allow role-based permission access for users. These alterations made by multiple users, may result in missing or erroneous information.

Working together is all about having data in one place and the possibility to work with the available data. When data becomes pivotal to all your daily tasks, you need a better business tool to manage.

Creator_Collaboration

Let’s consider your sales and production teams, both being cross- functional in nature and inter-dependent on data. As your sales executive updates sales information on the spreadsheet, your production manager from a different location, may add a few more rows of data relating to the stock information. Not only does the spreadsheet application get heavily-loaded with information, there is also a high chance  of collaboration-triggered issues. The problem gets more complex when everyone in other departments in your company, for instance–your warehouse team has access to manipulate information.

A custom solution like Zoho Creator is not only a central repository of information, but also allows multiple users to work on the data in real-time without confusion. It allows you to share the application with different teams in the organization. Due to its fine-grained access control feature, you can ensure that only specific people within a team have a chance to modify information. Additionally, the access permissions can also be defined based on roles. With all these features, you’re in total control of all information-based transactions that happen between multiple users in multiple teams.

You can be confident, that the data is available for people to collaborate and you can rest assured that it’s always accurate and up-to-date. So, if you have a lot of information and more collaborators then Zoho Creator would be the best solution for you.

Share with us, the processes you’ve deviced in your organisation to track all collaboration-based issues while using a spreadsheet program.

Supercharging your business: Understanding what solution is right for your business.

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Before the era of technology, book-keepers, record assistants, and accountants used the paper and pencil method to maintain statement of transactions.  The rise of the computer era led to a wonderful invention called  spreadsheets. The first electronic version of the spreadsheet appeared in 1978 with a program known as “VisiCalc”. Since then,  spreadsheets  became the go-to tool to solve  problems since people started using the program for every single need like collecting information, performing calculations and data analysis.

No doubt, it is a terrific tool on multiple fronts, and it is evident that spreadsheet programs have a huge fan following. Number crunching is a piece of cake on spreadsheets–all you need to know is, to use some formulae and automate calculations in the workbook. Another significant advantage of spreadsheets  is visualizing statistical or numerical data in the most simplistic form. Data need not be necessarily represented as text or numerals; it can be represented as charts or graphs.

ZOHO Creator_Supercharging your business

Businesses run on data. Data is needed for making informed decisions and taking actions. Time is also the most important factor while working with data manually. Let’s imagine you run a book store that sells more than thousands of titles. As the best-in- town store, you always  keep track of all your titles that you  sell. And, you have Imagine you have this information stored on a spreadsheet. You are good as long as you want to analyze or visualize data like hot-selling titles of the week or month.

What if you needed your data to work for you? What if you wanted to be notified about one of your hot-selling titles running out of stock? What if you needed to place an order for fresh stock of books to your distributor in order to  replenish your inventory? What if you wanted to get your customer feedback as soon as he or she has made a purchase from your store?

You will agree with me, that spreadsheets can be limiting to perform these unique actions for you.There are many off-the-shelf software solutions for businesses that help solve most of the common business bottlenecks. Each business is unique. That is why you need a custom fit solution for your business to ease out your business operational tasks.

Zoho Creator is a solution that allows you to store, manage and create workflows around your data. It competes business complexity. You don’t need an IT guy to sit down, build something, test it and then wait for it to be rolled out to everyone in the workplace.  Because, building something on Zoho Creator is as easy as and much more than working with a spreadsheet program. Additionally, you can enjoy the advantages such as workflow management and real- time collaboration.

As a growing business owner, ask yourself these questions.

  • Does your company generate an enormous amount of information that is unmanageable in a spreadsheet?
  • Do you have constant changes made to existing data by different teams at different times and  geographical locations?
  • Do you need instant workflow based actions to be triggered or notifications based on available data?
  • Do you need automatically generated reports?

If your answer, is a ‘YES’ to all or any of the questions above, you sure need a powerful and scalable solution to beat complexity, manage and automate your business processes.  Zoho Creator is the right solution for your growing business.

Zoho Creator: Visualize your data better with Conditional Formatting

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Zoho Creator has helped you grasp information quickly with reports in the form of graphs and charts. Achieving this with data in tabular format is more challenging. Our new feature Conditional Formatting makes it possible.

With conditional formatting you can now color code your data in both list and spreadsheet view based on any criteria. The ability to automatically have certain data highlighted allows you to quickly and easily spot trends, outliers, or bring information to your attention. Read more

Hello Zoho Creator! Meet Zoho Support!

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You can do so much more with Zoho Creator by connecting it to other apps or services you use and simplify the tedious tasks and 
workflowOur integration with Zoho Support is another step towards our vision: make managing your business simpler.

Integration with Zoho Support, your help desk software, makes the exchange of information between the two apps seamless. It is now possible to create, update or fetch information from Zoho Support. To suit your business process, you can build custom modules for the Zoho Support application. You could even bring information into your Zoho Creator custom app to build reports and collaborate with other users.

Connect Zoho Creator to Zoho Support

For instance, in your Zoho Creator Order Management app.  Your customers can report complaints and a ticket will instantly get created in Zoho Support. The agent can even access the order details empowering him with the relevant information.

Consider another scenario, a company uses Zoho Creator apps to manage the business processes better. For every new customer buying your equipment, a new Annual Maintenance Contract is created. With the integration with Zoho Support, you can automatically schedule the maintenance task based on the contract and assign it to a support agent.

These are just two scenarios. You could add an umpteen number of custom functions for your business needs.

We want you to focus on your business rather than managing the data. We have previously opened up powerful possibilities to extend and enhance your Zoho Creator app with Zoho products like Zoho CRM, Zoho Invoice, Zoho Calendar, Zoho Reports, Zoho Recruit. You can link your Zoho Creator apps to external cloud applications and SMS services like Twilio and Clickatell.

All these additions make it easier to connect Zoho Creator apps to different services and allow seamless flow of information.

Stay tuned, more useful integrations are coming. Meanwhile, please let us know how you use Zoho Creator integrations.

Build intelligence into your Zoho Creator forms

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If there’s one feature we had to pick in Zoho Creator that could help you achieve the most, with the least amount of effort, it’s Form Automation.

Form automation is a time-saving addition to Zoho Creator that can make your everyday work easier. It allows you to define your business rules and workflows. The best part is you can do this without any coding.

With this feature, your app can now show/hide fields or sub-forms or complete a set of tasks when a form rule is met while the user fills, submits or modifies a form. You can trigger actions such as displaying custom confirmation messages, redirecting users to different web pages, sending predefined email/SMS notifications based on different rules that are met.

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Easily generate brochures, payslips, contracts and more with Zoho Creator’s Custom Record Summary function

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Recently, our facilities team was looking for a simple way to manage purchase orders. They decided to try the Custom Record Summary feature in Zoho Creator and instantly, the tedious task of generating and managing purchase orders was a thing of the past. Needless to say, they were able to retire the old time-consuming purchase order system and process. And, more importantly, now it just takes a few clicks for our facilities team to create beautiful and accurate purchase orders (Print/PDF Version).

Sample Templates created using Custom Record Summary

In case you missed it, the Custom Record Summary was recently released in Zoho Creator.  This versatile feature allows you to create nearly any type of customized template for your business. Once the template is created, Zoho Creator automatically populates the template with your data.

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