Reporting in Google Sheets

You can use Google Sheet's built in functions to create your own custom reports with Streamtime data that's always up to date. Importhtml simply calls a website/web app and fills in the returned table in the sheet.

Many Stream­time users turn to waya­head to cre­ate bespoke reports, often to replace a Google Sheet they’ve been using for years. Gen­er­al­ly speak­ing, the process of updat­ing the data fre­quent­ly can be labo­ri­ous and time-con­sum­ing. More­over, the man­u­al han­dling of data increas­es the risk of errors and incon­sis­ten­cies.
Cre­at­ing cus­tom reports using the Waya­head app proves to be sig­nif­i­cant­ly eas­i­er and more effi­cient. Since the data is linked via API, it is always up to date, elim­i­nat­ing the need for man­u­al data updates. This not only saves time but also reduces the risk of human errors and incon­sis­ten­cies. The direct link between Waya­head and Stream­time ensures that your reports are always accu­rate and reli­able, lead­ing to well-informed busi­ness decisions.

Recent­ly, a clien­t’s unusu­al request for a cus­tom report had me a lit­tle unset­tled. They sought to extract mean­ing­ful sum­maries from Stream­time data in a straight­for­ward table. How­ev­er, this table was not meant to serve as the ulti­mate report. Instead, the plan was to trans­fer these sum­maries into a more exten­sive spread­sheet, inter­twin­ing them with oth­er data to gen­er­ate a com­pre­hen­sive report.

At first, I thought my dis­com­fort stemmed from pride — the notion that my report was mere­ly a step­ping stone to a more pow­er­ful report. How­ev­er, I soon rec­og­nized the real issue: I was design­ing a tool that only auto­mat­ed part of the process. Man­u­al labor would still be required to trans­fer the data into a Google Sheet. So I came up with a bet­ter solution.

It turns out Google Sheets offers a func­tion called IMPORTHTML that can be extreme­ly use­ful in sit­u­a­tions like this. This func­tion allows you to import data direct­ly from a table or list with­in an HTML page into your Google Sheet. By using this func­tion, you can auto­mate the process of trans­fer­ring data, elim­i­nat­ing the need for man­u­al labor and mak­ing your report more effi­cient and accu­rate.
But IMPORTHTML can not talk direct­ly to the Stream­time API. First of all, IMPORTHTML can not authen­ti­cate with Stream­time or send the cor­rect search para­me­ters, but it requires the end­point to return a html table. So we use waya­head­’s API instead. The waya­head back­end con­tains the authen­ti­ca­tion and report log­ic, fetch­es data from Stream­time, process­es the results and then returns a table for Google.

Let’s delve into how it oper­ates: In Google Sheets, we craft cus­tom cells tai­lored to assist us in gen­er­at­ing the report. These can encom­pass a vari­ety of com­po­nents such as date cells, check­box­es, text fields, among oth­ers. These ele­ments can then be con­veyed to the waya­head API through the URL. Upon receiv­ing these para­me­ters from the URL, waya­head­’s API pro­ceeds to issue one or more post requests to the Stream­time API, util­is­ing Stream­time authen­ti­ca­tion. The data retrieved from Stream­time under­goes a series of process­es with­in waya­head — it is amal­ga­mat­ed, com­put­ed, con­vert­ed, and ulti­mate­ly out­put as a table for uti­liza­tion with­in the sheet.
Every time one of the cus­tom cells from the sheet changes or every time the sheet is opened, Google auto­mat­i­cal­ly fetch­es the data again. Et voila! Instant up to date reports with the data from Streamtime!

This solu­tion offers a range of excit­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties for cus­tomiz­ing your report in Google Sheets. If you’re eager to explore how it can be tai­lored to meet your spe­cif­ic needs, I’d would love to hear from you. Please, don’t hes­i­tate to get in touch!

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