The New FileMaker 11 Chart Tool

FileMaker 11 has a great new Chart tool that allows you to add dynamic graphs to your database. Until now, the only way to dynamically display data charts and graphs from within FileMaker Pro was by using 3rd-party plug-ins or a web-viewer and web service. The new chart tool will display data from the current record, the current table, or a related table. It supports bar, horizontal bar, line, area and pie. There are a number of useful formatting options available.

In the example below, I’m charting sales orders. I already have an Order Total field that holds the total $ amount for all items, taxes and shipping on each order. I want to summarize the sales numbers, showing the total sales in dollars for each sales person, or total sales per showroom. To do this, I will add a summary field to my Orders table:

This field is totaling the total of each order. When I sort my Orders by Salesperson, the summary field will show the total of all orders by a given salesperson. If I sort by showroom, it will show a total of all the orders from that showroom.

For the vertical axis, I’ve selected my summary field, OrdersTotal:

For the Y axis I’m using the SalesRep’s NameFirstLast. If you have a number of data points, you will want to click Format Chart, select the Y axis, and change the label angle to 45 or 90 degrees.

After sorting my Orders by SalesRep LastName and SalesRep Firstname, I get my Graph:

I can build another graph with Showrooms on the Y axis, and show an up-to-date chart by sorting on Showroom.

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