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What Is Ad Hoc Reporting?

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Ad hoc reporting is a type of business intelligence reporting created on an as-needed basis. It’s typically used to answer specific questions or to address particular business questions. Ad hoc reporting is flexible and can be customized to meet the user’s particular needs. Keep reading to learn the definition of ad hoc reporting and how it can be used to benefit your business.

What is ad hoc?

Ad hoc is a type of reporting that is done on an as-needed basis rather than according to a pre-determined schedule. This type of reporting can be helpful when there is a need for timely information that cannot be obtained through other means. The report is not typically part of the regular reporting process, and it may be requested by someone in the organization who does not have regular access to data. Ad hoc reports can be used to answer specific questions or provide decision-making information.

One common use of ad hoc reporting is investigating unusual or unexpected events. For example, if there is a sudden increase in sales, an ad hoc analysis might be created to determine what caused the increase and whether it’s likely to continue. Ad hoc reports can also track progress on specific projects or goals.

Since ad hoc reports are typically created for specific purposes, they can vary significantly in scope and content. They may include data from multiple sources or just a single dataset. Additionally, they may consist of detailed ad hoc analysis and commentary or basic information about the data.

Ad hoc reporting can be a valuable tool for organizations because it allows them to quickly obtain information relevant to specific questions. However, it can also be challenging because creating custom reports takes time and effort. As a result, it’s important to ensure that requests for ad hoc reports are well-defined and limited in scope, so they do not interfere with the normal flow of business operations.

How can you use pivot tables for ad hoc reporting?

Ad hoc reporting is a type of reporting specific to the user’s needs. Instead, it’s not part of any pre-determined report format and is created to answer questions or solve problems as they arise. This can be done manually by creating a table or spreadsheet from scratch or using a tool like Microsoft Excel’s pivot tables.

Pivot tables are especially useful for ad hoc reporting because they allow you to quickly and easily rearrange data in different ways to see it from different angles. This can help you better understand what’s going on in your business and make more informed decisions about how to move forward.

How can you improve your data analysis with ad hoc reporting?

Ad hoc reporting is a powerful tool for improving data analysis. This can be helpful when you need to explore specific data sets in more detail or when you want to compare different data sets side-by-side. Ad hoc reporting can also help you spot trends and patterns that might not be visible in predefined reports. By customizing your reports, you can focus on the information that’s most important to you and see it in a way that makes sense for your business.

How can you use ad hoc reporting with Tableau software?


Ad hoc reporting with Tableau software allows you to create and share interactive data visualizations quickly. You can use Tableau Desktop to connect to data stored in your company’s database or the cloud, then build charts and graphs, called views, to help you answer specific questions about your data. Views can be shared with others inside or outside your company, making ad hoc reporting an easy way for teams of people to work together on data analysis.

Ad hoc reporting is important because it allows businesses and organizations to understand their current state clearly and make better strategic decisions. Additionally, ad hoc reporting provides more accurate and timely decision-making, leading to increased profits and improved organizational performance.

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