Monday, April 29, 2013

Control Your Date Controls

Do your QlikView applications have date controls?  Almost all of mine do in one way or another.  Most of the time, I have resorted to the traditional Year, Quarter and Month list boxes that we are accustomed to.  Something similar to this:

This is fine for many business users but sometimes users have more exacting needs that cannot be selected with the above controls.  If a user needs to look at the months of November 2012 and Jan 2013 for example, there is no way to make that selection with the above list boxes.  So, we have to add another list box for the Month-Year combinations. 

Then if users have need to look at specific quarters or weeks in the same manner, now we have lots of extra list boxes on the screen that we do not likely have room for.

With the addition of containers, we now have an easy way to provide our users with the best of both worlds.  The key to this idea is that the user likely does not need to utilize both styles of date controls at the same time.  They will need one or the other for any given analysis need.  So hiding one set while the other set is active allows us to reuse the screen area. 

Using nested grid and single-item containers, you can create a very powerful date control set while, preserving the vital screen real-estate for your real data.  You may also incorporate cycle dimensions for a different feel.  Lets look at some examples.  You can find the qvw here.

In the default view, the user sees the traditional date segment view:

If the user selects Range, they will be presented with the ability to select specific year, quarters or months:

 And finally, they can drill down one more step to find specific weeks or dates.

Another option to display the date ranges is to use a list box with a cycle dimension to change the interval type.  This gives us a clean look, allows a larger amount of values to be displayed at once, but limits us to one type of date interval at a time.

There are probably other variations of this idea that may be even more effective and helpful for the user.  Hopefully you can utilize and improve upon this in your own work.

Comments and feedback always welcome.


  1. Simple...yet brilliant.. I have only just started looking at this blog yet am loving a lot of the posts... Please give us more Aaron

  2. Great idea. Can you provide me with an example document. The link to the qvw is dead unfortunatly

  3. Sorry about the issue. The links are now working again.