I would like to start by saying, may aspects of Podio have been done very well. Also, [as a developer myself], I understand that these systems take a lot of time and effort to build. So, thank you for taking on a very complex problem domain. Overall, Podio has done a good job.
My suggestion addresses an aspect of Podio that is currently lacking. This defecientcy is a major blocker of Podio becoming a powerful complete business solution. The aspect I speak of is the complex area of reporting.
A quick look over open feature request found 243 votes for this area of the application. These votes are spread over many feature request.
Why do I believe Podio should make an effort to resolve the problem of reporting?
Since this system is designed as a central place for everyone in a company to do "work." The system must provide a comprehensive way to report what "work" has been done. Executives, Managers, Stakeholder, and even employees love to see reports.
How many hours did it take to do that?
How much did we make on that deal?
How much better are we running as a company now that we all use Podio?
I could probably create 20 reports off the top of my head that people want to see. To get this information out of the system is for the most part impossible. Most calculations take multiple calculation blocks that confuse the people using the forms. The system needs the ability to handle complex reporting to generate graphs, trends, and so on. The system also needs the reports to be stylized and formatted. Then export these reports to PDF, so they can be emailed, printed, and generally obsessed about within a company.
I get that this system has a clear goal of being paperless and that everything would reside within the system so it is the one stop shop for everything to do with the business. So there are two options:
Build reporting into the system so that complex manipulation of the system is possible and sharable [exported in PDF] with customers outside of the system.
Option 2 is to create a reporting database that the end user can connect a system like Jasper reports to so the business can build any report they want from the data. I realize access is provided through the API. But the amount of work to make reporting functional will take a lot of time and effort. This time and effort is something most places don't have, because they are trying to run their business. That is why we all were looking for a system to handle this and found podio in the first place.
Option 2 sounds the fastest and is preferred. I srongly urge Podio to consider building a solution to help us out. Also, my fellow podio users please vote to help make this solution possible.
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