Notifications (alerts)

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1. Overview

Notifications offer a way to send email reminders, alerts, or the latest data in your dashboard or report based on a schedule or under certain conditions.

For example, you can set up a notification that emails your dashboard to your group once a week or when certain data changes to meet some condition.

2. Set up a notification

To create a notification for yourself or others, open an existing dashboard (or report), go to the toolbar, and click Notification.

From the dropdown, choose the type of notification you want to create.

Click Notification and choose the type
Click Notification and choose the type

Note
Notifications can't be set up for a metric set that displays raw data. Remove <Row Number> from Rows in the Data Analysis Panel to change this.

3. Types of notifications

3.1. Scheduled

A scheduled notification occurs on a periodic schedule which you define by selecting recurrence and other scheduling options.

Scheduled notification setup
Scheduled notification setup

Click Define Schedule to configure the scheduling options.

Select the Run Immediately option if you want to run the notification immediately upon saving (instead of waiting for the first scheduled event).

3.2. Note

A note-based notification lets you know when a user has added a note (annotation) to a metric set.

Note-based notification setup
Note-based notification setup

Use the dropdown to select the metric set you want to monitor for notes.

3.3. Data driven

A data driven notification occurs when a change in data is detected on a scheduled basis (i.e., polling).

Data driven notification setup
Data driven notification setup

Click Define Schedule to schedule the polling for data changes.

Then click Add Condition to define the specifics of the data changes you want to monitor (e.g., a change of state for a metric set).

Select the Run Immediately option if you want to run the notification immediately upon saving (instead of waiting for the first scheduled event).

3.4. Data correction

A data correction-based notification lets you know when a user has added a measure correction (data annotation) to a metric set.

Data correction-based notification setup
Data correction-based notification setup

 Use the dropdown to select the metric set you want to monitor for data corrections.

4. Notification options

4.1. Define schedule

The option is used both for scheduled, and for determining when data driven notifications poll for data.

Define the notification schedule
Define the notification schedule

At the top of the Schedule Rule dialog, use the Enabled checkbox to enable or disable the schedule. This is useful if you want to temporarily suspend the schedule instead of deleting the notification.

Enable or disable a schedule
Enable or disable a schedule

If you are interested in adjusting your notification schedule for daylight saving time, select your time zone from the dropdown.

Daylight Saving Time
Daylight Saving Time

To define a schedule, first enter the start date and time for the schedule under Start Options.

Start Options
Start Options

Choose between one of the following scheduling patterns:

  • A daily pattern occurs every day or every nth day.
  • A weekly pattern occurs weekly or every nth week. You can also indicate the days of the week to include in the schedule.
  • A monthly pattern occurs once a month. You can choose which months to include and also which day of the month.

A monthly pattern that occurs on the first Monday of each month
A monthly pattern that occurs on the first Monday of each month

Select the Intra-Day Recurrence checkbox if you want to specify different times within a scheduled day to be part of the schedule. Click Add Occurrence to add a time of day to the schedule.

Intra-Day Recurrence option
Intra-Day Recurrence option

Finally, decide how the schedule should end under End Options. You can choose to keep the schedule going forever, indicate that it should end after a certain number of occurrences, or enter a specific date to end by.

4.2. Select export content

The Select Export Content option is available for all notification types.

Use this option to specify the file format for exporting. The exported file can be included as an attachment of the email notification or delivered to a folder location.

Supported export formats include:

  • Excel
  • PDF
  • Image (PNG)
  • CSV
  • PowerPoint

Depending on the format, you can choose to export the entire view (e.g., dashboard) or a selected data visualization. For more details about export options, see Share or export your work.

Select Export Content
Select Export Content

Note
Dashboards designed in Responsive mode will be exported to PDF in Scale mode to better fit the selected page size.

You can choose to store the current parameter (filter) settings to be used when exporting content by selecting Preserve Current Parameter Values.

Preserve Current Parameter Values
Preserve Current Parameter Values

4.3. Set up delivery options

The Define Delivery Options dialog is available for all notification types and is enabled after you select the export content.

The Delivery Method is initially set to Email Notifications, which will attach the exported file in an email.

Deliver notification as an email message
Deliver notification as an email message

4.3.1. Email notifications

Click Add recipient to add users or email addresses to send the email to.

Note
Recipients will have the option to Unsubscribe included in the email, which will remove them from this list.

Enter the subject and body text for your email message in the fields provided. Right-click in either field for a list of available placeholders, which you can use to customize the export based on the user (also known as report bursting):

  • Recipient name – the name of the email recipient. 
  • Creation date – the date when the notification was create.
  • User name – the name of the user who created the notification.
  • View name – the name of the view (dashboard or report).
  • Embedded image – the exported image (only available if the export format is set to Image).

To further customize the export based on the user, select the option Export Using Recipient Account, which allows for the exported contents to be filtered by custom attributes.

Separate email per recipient
Separate email per recipient

You can also click Customize parameters when adding or editing recipients to set specific filter settings for each. These parameter values will override any set on the dashboard.

Note
Exporting using the recipient account will require generating the report for each user, which may affect performance.

4.3.2. Create file

You can have the notification delivered as an export file that is placed in a specified folder location. To do this, set Delivery method to Create File

Specify a Folder location for storing the generated files, which must be a location accessible to the Dundas BI server such as a folder shared over your network.

The File Name Template is a prefix that will be used to compose the actual filenames.

Deliver notification as a file
Deliver notification as a file

The File Lifespan option determines whether files from previous notifications are overwritten. If a notification occurs before the file lifespan expired for the previous one, a new file is generated with a different name.

4.4. Data driven condition

The Data Driven Condition dialog is displayed when you add a new condition to a data driven notification. A data condition specifies the criteria for detecting or evaluating changes in data.

Add a data condition
Add a data condition

Select a Condition Category to determine when to notify the recipients:

  • Increases – An increase is detected in the target data.
  • Continuously Increases – Regular increases are detected in the target data over a specified period.
  • Decreases – A decrease is detected in the target data.
  • Continuously Decreases – Regular decreases are detected in the target data over a specified period.
  • Enters State – The target data has entered a specified state.
  • Exits State – The target data has left a specified state.
  • Stays in State – The target data remains in a specified state for the specified period.
  • In State(s) – The data is in the specified state.

Indicate the Visualization and the Metric Set you want to monitor. The visualization must currently be displayed to be able to select it.

Under Target Cells, click Add Target Cell to select numeric value to monitor. You can add multiple cells, or for some conditions select an entire column. Or, click Add Target Cell Manually to select a cell by its hierarchy members from a filter, with access to tokens.

Add a target cell to monitor
Add a target cell to monitor

If you chose a state condition, click the States tab to set up the state or conditions to monitor for.

You can drag states that were already defined as part of the metric set, or click Add Custom State to define your own state.

Drop or add a state under Target States to monitor data that enters that state (required for Enters State), or Source States to monitor data the exits that state (required for Exits State). When monitoring state transitions, you can optionally choose both a source and target: for example, the figure below shows the configuration for detecting a state transition from the Good state to the Bad state.

Monitor for a state transition
Monitor for a state transition

Click the submit button at the bottom of the Data Driven Condition dialog to finish adding your condition.

If you are creating multiple conditions for the same notification, use the Multiple Condition Operator to indicate whether the all conditions (And) or any conditions (Or) must be met for the notification to occur.

Multiple condition operator
Multiple condition operator

5. View or update notifications

Existing notifications in Dundas BI can be viewed and updated by you or your administrator.

5.1. Personal notifications

From the main menu, click Profile to view and edit your user profile.

In the My Profile dialog, scroll down and click Notifications to view your list of notifications.

Manage your notifications
Manage your notifications

Click the Edit button for a notification to make updates to it.

In the case of note-based (i.e. annotation) and data driven notifications, it is necessary for the dashboard or other view that the notification is based upon to be already open before you can edit certain aspects of it (e.g., data conditions). If you don't have the view open already, you'll see a dialog telling you this along with its name. Click Ok in this dialog to open the required view, then re-open My Profile and edit the notification again.

Open the dashboard first
Open the dashboard first

5.2. Managing notifications

As an administrator, you can view all of the existing user-defined notifications for this instance.

From the main menu, click Admin, then Account Service, and then Notifications.

Manage notifications
Manage notifications

Use the controls at the top to search, sort, and filter the list of notifications by tenant, account, or the kind of notification.

Click Edit for a notification in the list to make updates to it.

Sort, filter, and edit notifications
Sort, filter, and edit notifications

Alternatively, similar to the personal notifications, an administrator can view the notifications for a user from the user account.

From the main menu, click Admin, then Account Service, and then Accounts.

Click Edit to open the User Account Details panel and click User's Notifications.

Open the user's notifications
Open the user's notifications

Click Edit for a notification in the list to make updates to it.

6. Notes

6.1. SMS / text message notifications

Dundas BI does not currently support SMS notifications, but there are a number of third-party email-to-SMS gateway and forwarding services that you may be able to use instead. Just set up an email address with an email-to-SMS service, and then use this email address as a notification recipient in Dundas BI.

6.2. File metadata

You can modify the Company and Creator that appear in Excel and PowerPoint files generated by Dundas BI.

Go to the Application Configuration page (Admin | Setup | Config). Select the Export category, and provide a value for Company Meta Data Text and Creator Meta Data Text.

File meta data configuration
File meta data configuration

7. See also

Dundas Data Visualization, Inc.
500-250 Ferrand Drive
Toronto, ON, Canada
M3C 3G8

North America: 1.800.463.1492
International: 1.416.467.5100

Dundas Support Hours: 7am-6pm, ET, Mon-Fri