SAP purchased a company called Business Objects. Business Objects is the company that makes Crystal Reports, which has been around for a long time. SAP now offers integration from SAP Business One to Crystal Reports through an Add-On for any customers that are up to date with their maintenance agreement. The cost of the add-on is free; if you are a customer or partner, you can download the add-on and install it into your system. Of course if you do not install it yourself, then you can have a consultant install it for you for a fee.
The current reporting within SBO is either done through PLD (with Queries), XL Reporter, or just by offloading data from SBO to Excel. These reporting solutions are good, but a few of them are a little difficult for a normal user to utilize. Crystal Reports is a very common skill set and is probably the most commonly used reporting tool (even outside the SAP world).
SAP also recently announced that they will offer one free Crystal Reports “light” developers edition (the site states Available Mid-August 2008) so that companies can develop their own reports over the SBO data. The only issue is that the “light” version only allows you to work with the SBO data.
Before this add-on was announced, products such as Third Wave’s – Crystal Wave were the only way that you could integrate crystal reports into the SBO menu. Third Wave’s solution appears to be much more advanced than the free integration with SAP (but it gets the job done). The Third Wave solution allows you to replace the current reports on the marketing documents, place named reports right on the menu (with parameters), and associate reports with any screen in SBO (and will take screen fields and pass them to the report). Additionally they have some pretty advanced document emailing capabilities and integrated activity management.
If you do not already have a reporting solution for SAP Business One, now is the time to take advantage of this tool from SAP. Check out the SAP Portal (username and password required) to get the add-on.
Thanks to Ed Monk of SBONotes.com