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Complex Queries - need more capability in Custom Reports

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2007 8:50 am
by james_francisco
Last Sunday, the stake RS president asked for some custom reports. One of the reports that she wanted was all of the widowed sisters over age 65. The single part was easy, the age parameter was easy. But, isolating just the widows into a single list can't be printed directly from Custom Reports in MLS. This isn't the only time that the criteria options in Custom Reports hasn't been rich enough to all us to extract the exact information that we wanted. I would like to see either a broader range of criteria in the list or an advanced query option that would allow those who can write SQL queries to extract data that way.

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2007 10:04 am
by thedqs
An SQL feature would be great to have.

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2007 12:04 pm
by russellhltn
Yes, it would be nice to have SQL capability, but it might make security difficult if it's being done in the application level rather then the database level.

"Widowed" or just "Single"? "Widowed" would be a bit harder as I don't think there is any data for "was married" or "husband died" as opposed to "divorced". I don't think the database has the information that makes the strict definition of "widowed" possible. You can check to see if they are sealed to someone, but that's not the same.

However I'd gently question why she's needing the list. Older Single Sister? Fine. But why just Widowed? Yes, there are biblical citations, but that was a different era. I'd think today there are many in the "widow" situation who were never married. There's no substitute for knowing the situation of each member.

Posted: Wed Nov 14, 2007 7:39 am
by jenkinsja-p40
The system is already able to perform the requested query. Just enter the following criteria for your custom report. Hope this helps.

Attribute: Marriage Status
Compare Operation: Is
Value: Widowed

Posted: Wed Nov 14, 2007 9:09 am
by james_francisco
Actually, there is an underlying flag in the database for widowed. There is a lot of information in the membership table that is not easily exposed for data extraction and analysis.

RussellHltn wrote:"Widowed" or just "Single"? "Widowed" would be a bit harder as I don't think there is any data for "was married" or "husband died" as opposed to "divorced". I don't think the database has the information that makes the strict definition of "widowed" possible.

Posted: Wed Nov 14, 2007 11:59 am
by russellhltn
jenkinsja wrote:Attribute: Marriage Status
Compare Operation: Is
Value: Widowed


Well, proven wrong again. :o

I'd be skeptical of the accuracy of the information in the case of less active members. I've seen too many times where marriages aren't even recorded. If the marriage wasn't recorded, there's nothing to remove when they are widowed. And since this flag isn't that obvious, there's no reason for the clerk to take corrective action if it's wrong.