Before considering building your own reporting tools or buying a new one, here are a few questions that you should consider
How many reports will be made ? If your organization is planning on producing plenty of report, you might consider investing the budget on reporting tools as creating the report application manually one by one could take a long time. How will the report be distributed ? If the executives in your organization has a different preference of consuming the report (web based, SMS alerts, email delivery etc.), it' will consume a lot of resource to build reports for each of the distribution method Will the users will be able to create their own custom made report easily ? If the report end user are likely to able to create and alter the report tailor-made for their consumption, then you should consider purchasing a flexible reporting system rather than building different report for different users which basically shows the same data. Must Have Features Of Reporting Tools
The report presentation is as important as managing the data in the data warehouse itself. Therefore you should pay attention to the following points when evaluating reporting tools:
Data source connection capabilities : The reporting tools must have the feature to be able to connect to various types of data source since it is easy to assume that the reporting source will come from aggregation of various source of data.
Scheduling and distribution capabilities: With the scheduling and distribution feature, executive users will be able to flexibly consume the report in a timely fashion and will be able to make critical business decisions accordingly.
Security Features: Security is an important issue in almost every software application, including reporting tools. You don't want unauthorized access to important reports in your organization do you?
Customization: Flexibility is another plus feature in current business intelligence software. Many executive users will expect the data presentation will match accordingly to their preference.
Export capabilities: Many report users don't consume the report data as it is. Most likely they will export it to another format (PDF, Excel and/or other Office supported formats) which then will be used for their work.