I'm looking for advice about the best way to automate the process of scheduling and exporting summarized data from reports into compiled PDF documents.

We use Salesforce to track information related to calls that come over our hotline (call details as well as caller demographics). We need summary reports about this information compiled into PDFs for our funders on a quarterly basis. This is proving to be more complicated than it sounds. As an example, one requirement involves reports by region. For these, we prepare 12 different regional reports that each include 12 different tables (e.g. - a breakdown by call line type or caller race/ethnicity). We've gathered the information into Salesforce reports, but it's usually not summarized or formatted exactly how we need it. And it is not compiled into one document. We would like to be able to automate the process of getting the report tables out of Salesforce without having to manually cut and paste, and we would like the solution to be flexible enough to accommodate our formatting requirements. We've explored working with Excel (which was very time consuming) and DrawLoop (which has potential but is very complicated to fine-tune for our purposes). I'm also experimenting with including Analytic/Reporting Snapshots into the final solution.

Does anyone have experience, suggestions or advice? Thanks in advance.

  • Conga can do this although it's a bit of an advanced feature. I have used it for similar requirements and it works great when you know how to utilize the functionality. I would highly suggest giving it a try
    – Eric
    Mar 1, 2017 at 5:16

1 Answer 1


As you have already stated, there are multiple ways you can address the issue.

  1. Looks like your reports are pretty static. A quick way to implement this would be a VF page and you can download the report as a XSLX file pretty easily in the VF page (By adding the contentType tag) or a PDF (renderAs = PDF).

  2. Drawloop or CongaMerge: You can do anything with these appexchange packages.

  3. DataLoader: Use Dataloader to extract the data and use a Excel Macro to build your report

  • Thanks for the suggestions. I don't have much experience with visual force, but it sounds like that would be worth looking into. I hadn't heard of the DataLoader approach. Would that be similar to to building a master report (with all the data fields that we need) and then exporting the details to Excel? Is there something advantageous about using DataLoader? We used Excel the last time but it took forever to generate all the tables using pivot tables. I like the idea of automating it with macros. I thought of building a template using formulas and ranges, but didn't think about the macros..
    – user17678
    Mar 7, 2015 at 4:49
  • Conga Composer is how we solve this issue - they have terrific technical support and the cost is very reasonable for a license
    – cropredy
    Mar 7, 2015 at 19:19

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