FAQs: FedEx® Flat File Reporting Tool 4.5

Please select from the following categories to review specific frequently asked questions about the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool.

ShowSystem Requirements
What are the system and hardware requirements for the application?

System Requirements

  • Microsoft Windows XP with SP2, Windows 7, Server 2003, Server 2008 and Vista
  • Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 or higher
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer v6.0 with SP1 or higher
  • An active internet connection is required to download flat files and application updates, but is not required to use the application

Hardware Requirements

  • Minimum 600-megahertz (MHz) Intel Pentium III-class processor or AMD processor; 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster recommended
  • Minimum 256 megabytes (MB) of RAM; 512 MB recommended
  • Up to 500 MB of hard disk space (25 MB for the basic application; 350 MB for the optional installation of SQL Server Express; additional disk space if data is saved locally rather than on an external SQL server)
  • External SQL server connections of SQL 2005 or 2008
  • Minimum resolution display of 1024x768 with 256 colors
  • Microsoft mouse or compatible pointing device

ShowInstallation and Versioning
How do I install the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool?

  1. Download the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool installer.
  2. Afterwards, double-click the FedEx Flat File Tool Installer icon.
  3. When prompted, select Run to install the application on your hard drive.
  4. Follow the instructions as you are guided through the installation process.
  5. The FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool will now be available on your computer.

FedEx® Billing Online files must be imported into the tool before reports can be generated. Learn about importing your data by viewing the demo or reading section 5 of the Help Guide.

What if I have a previous version of the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool?

Version 4.5 will seamlessly upgrade from version 4.0, importing data connections and report settings.


Version 4.5 can run side-by-side with version 3.0, but if you’d like to migrate data from version 3.0 into Version 4.5, follow these steps:


  1. Open the previous version of the tool.
  2. Go to the File menu and select the Export function.
  3. Export all the desired data to your PC.
  4. In Version 4, go to the Home tab and select the Import button.
  5. Import the file exported from the previous version.

For more about importing and exporting files, please see sections 5 and 14 of the Help Guide.

How do I get an updated version of the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool?

There is no need to manually download updated versions of the software. Each time the application starts, it checks for any available updates. If updates are available, you will be notified and asked for permission to install the update.

ShowImporting, Exporting, and Archiving Data
How do I download a new FedEx Billing Online flat file?

To download a new flat file, log in to your FedEx Billing Online account on fedex.com. There, you can create FedEx Express/FedEx Ground and FedEx SmartPost download files by using the New Search or Saved Searches. Once you’ve found matches, you will have the option to either download the screen results using a standard template or to create a customized download file using a customized template.

 

If you want the information in a specific order, create a customized download file. You will have the option to name it and access it later from the Download Center.


To download a file from the Download Center, double-click (or right click) the file name and follow the instructions for saving the file.


FedEx Billing Online Plus customers may also opt for Automatic Downloads. Click the Automatic Download option on the Search and Downloads screen and follow the prompts to select a standard template and file type. Downloadable files will be automatically created as soon as the corresponding invoice is available on FedEx Billing Online. You will receive an e-mail notification when your invoice and download are available from the Download Center.

How do I import FedEx Billing Online data into the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool?

  1. Choose the Home tab, and then click the Import button.
  2. Select the database into which your data files will be imported. For first time users, files will be imported into the default Main database.
  3. Next, click the folder icon to browse your computer for the file you want to import. Keep in mind you must select All Files under Files of Type to see files downloaded from FedEx Billing Online.
  4. Once you have located your file, select it and click Import. Depending on your machine, the import task may take several minutes. A status bar will keep you informed of the operation's progress.
  5. When the Data Imported message appears, click OK to continue with your work.

For more information on data importation, please view the demo or see section 5 of the Help Guide.

How do I archive or export data?

For maximum FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool database efficiency and performance and long term preservation of your historical data, you may wish to export and archive this data. It can be moved from the tool database into an external archive file on a network drive, or onto a CD or DVD. This can be done in several ways and is fully explained in sections 14 and 15 of the Help Guide.

ShowRunning Reports
How do I generate a report?

At least one FedEx Online Billing data file must be imported before reports can be run (instructions for file importation are detailed in the demo and in section 5 of the Help Guide). If your application's database is empty, the tool will inform you that you need to import a file.


To run a report:


  1. Select the report you would like to generate by choosing it from the report selection panel on the left of the application. The possible filters for the report will be displayed in the main panel of the application.
  2. Enter desired values to restrict your report to the data matching your parameters.
  3. Click Run Report on the bottom right of the application. Report generation may take a few moments.
  4. Once prepared, your report will be displayed in the main panel. Click the Report Parameters bar to alter your report parameters, or choose another report from the report selection panel.

For more information on generating reports, please see the demo or sections 6 and 7 of the Help Guide.

What reports are available with the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool?

Using the Report Designer, you can create any number of custom reports using the data fields and parameters that you choose.


Standard reports include:

Account Summary

  • By Account
  • Reference Detail

Invoices

  • Charge Reports
    • Charge Summary
    • Charge Type Summary
    • Charge Type Summary by Invoice and Ship Date
    • Shipment Charge Detail by Reference
    • Duty/Tax Charge Summary
  • Invoice Detail Reports
    • Express Shipment Detail
    • Ground Shipment Detail
    • Invoice Detail
    • Invoice Package Detail
    • Invoice Shipment Detail
    • Multi-Weight Detail
    • Package Detail
  • Invoice Summary Reports
    • By Charge Type
    • By Ship Date and Billing Type
    • Summarized Invoice Shipments
  • Address Corrections
  • Invoice Activity
  • Invoice by Service
  • MAIS
  • Service Fees

Shipment Summary

  • By Company
  • By Invoice
  • By Meter
  • By Payor/Returns
  • By Reference
  • By Reference Charges
  • By Service Type
  • By Shipment Date and Payor Type
  • Daily Shipment Totals
  • Type of Service Shipments

SmartPost Reports

  • SmartPost Package Detail Report
  • SmartPost Billing Group ID Detail Report

How do I generate a report for non-specific account numbers or invoice numbers?

  1. Select the report you would like to view from the left panel of the application.
  2. You can enter partial words or phrases in any text entry field to search for similar data. For example, to report on all invoice numbers that begin with "9," only enter "9" in the invoice number field. You may leave any field blank if you do not want to use it to filter data.
  3. Choose your desired date range, and click the Run Report button on the lower-right of the screen.

How can I change the order in which my report elements display?

After running a report, you can click and drag one or more column headers from your table up to the bar above the report (next to the report name) to group the data by those fields. You may also click the headers to sort the order of your data, and even click and drag the headers to change order of the columns.

How do I choose the date range for my report?

The date range will default to the earliest and latest dates of the information currently stored in your application's internal database. You only need to manually select these parameters if you would like to narrow the data displayed by your report.


  1. Select the report you would like to view from the left panel of the application.
  2. Click the dropdown arrow next to the starting date and select your desired start date on the calendar that appears. Repeat this step to set an ending date.
  3. Once you have chosen your desired date range, click the Run Report button on the lower-right of the application.

ShowCreating Custom Reports
Can I create a custom report from the data contained in the FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool?

Yes! The FedEx Flat File Reporting Tool offers a number of pre-defined standard report types for your convenience, and you can edit these standard reports or even create your own customized reports from scratch.


To edit a standard report, click on the report name and then make a copy of it by clicking the Copy Report button. Select the copy you made and then click the Edit Report button on the top toolbar. By doing this, you can modify a standard report to fit your needs.


To learn more, please view the demo or section 7 of the Help Guide.

ShowSaving/Printing Report Results
How do I save report parameters?

  • Open the desired report (standard or custom) and enter your parameters in the Report Parameters section
  • Click the Run Report button on the lower-right of the application
  • When your report appears, click the Save Parameters button on the Home tab

This function will save your report parameters, column organization, and any grouping. The next time you click on the report, your parameters and columns will appear in the manner in which they were saved.


For more about report parameters, please view the demo or see section 10 of the Help Guide.

How do I save a report?

To save a generated report:


  1. Click the Save Report Results button (on the Home tab) and select your desired format from the drop-down list.
  2. Choose where on your computer you’d like to save the report and enter a filename.
  3. Click the Save button .
  4. Your report will be saved to the location you specified; you will also have the option to view your saved report.

For more about saving reports, please view the demo or refer to section 11 of the Help Guide.

In what formats can reports be saved?

All reports can be saved as configured files with a variety of attributes and in multiple formats including Comma Separated Value (CSV), Grouped Microsoft Excel and Flat Microsoft Excel Formats.


The Comma Separated Value (CSV) produces a comma delimited flat file. This format is supported by almost all spreadsheet applications and database management systems. Charges will be listed as columns in this format. Keep in mind that opening a CSV file in Excel may change the format of some fields (date, invoice number, etc.).


The Grouped Excel format maintains the groupings you see in your report. Microsoft Excel supports this format. If Charges are listed as sub-tables in the report, they will remain as sub-tables.


The Flat Excel format produces a flat document without grouping or sub-tables, and Charges will be listed as columns. Microsoft Excel and Open Office support this format.


For more about report formats, please view the demo or refer to section 11 of the Help Guide.

How do I print a report?

  1. Generate your report as described above.
  2. Click the Print Report button on the Home tab.
  3. Verify that the correct printer is selected, and click OK .