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Virtual Report Suite Curation: How did it get so messed up??

score 5
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My organisation has been trying to move to using curated Virtual Report Suites.  However, we have found 2 main problems:


  • 1) Segments/calculated metrics can either be shared to everyone or no one
  • 2) Users who create segments/calculated metrics are unable to see what they create


[Note: for simplicity from here on I only refer to “segments”.  However, I believe this all equally applies to calculated metrics]


Details of the issues encountered...

There are now 3 administrative capabilities relating to segments:

  • User admin control over creation of segments
  • Sharing of segments (e.g. clicking “share”)
  • Customization of Virtual Report Suite Components (VRS Curation)

Unfortunately, they interact with each other in bizarre and contradictory ways.  However, all the problems seem to stem from the “Customization of Virtual Report Suite Components” capability.


Issues observed:

  • The sharing of segments becomes all or nothing.

          This is because:

    • Any segment that has been included in VRS curation become visible to all users of that virtual report suite (even if the segment is not “shared”)
    • Shared segments that are not included in VRS curation cannot be seen by any users


This means:

    • Either everyone gets a segment, or no one gets a segment
    • The segment “share” functionality in analytics becomes completely redundant


  • Users who have been granted access to create segments suffer a poor/degraded experience

When a user creates a segment it is not a curated segment within the virtual report suite and is therefore blocked from appearing in the left-hand rail.


This break a well establish workflow leading to much confusion as segments do not appear where users expect them.


(Note: users aren't actually blocked from using segments they've created as they still have the capability within the panels to create segments in the project.)



Expectations as to how things should work...

The management of segments [and calculated metrics] should be removed from VRS curation.  VRS curation should concentrate on:

  • props (inc. entry & exit variations)
  • eVars
  • events
  • out of the box variables (e.g. mobile devices)
  • classifications


In addition to this I would recommend that:

  • Whether or not a segment is made available to multiple users should be managed in one place i.e. through the normal segment sharing capability
  • If there is a requirement to be able to define which report suites a segment will show up in, this should be configured and stored within the individual segment
  • If there is a requirement to prevent users sharing segments, this should become a user permission is the same way that the ability to ‘create segments’ is.


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