Tablix – Stepped Layout

Tablix enables the separation of data groupings and layout header areas.  A stepped layout can help with horizontal spacing, because nested groups can then share the same horizontal space, which was previously not possible in a matrix layout.  This provides very powerful layout capabilities, and is one among several new features introduced with Tablix.

A webcast about Report Authoring in Reporting Services 2008 by my esteemed colleague Carolyn Chau shows how to design a table or matrix with a stepped group layout by simply selecting an option in the table and matrix wizard. 

You can accomplish the same effect by manually converting from a regular blocked to a stepped layout.  For the example shown below:

  1. right click the Component textbox – insert row – inside group above
  2. copy the Component textbox description into the newly created header space
  3. right click the Component textbox and select delete columns (delete columns only, not the associated group)
  4. select the SubComponent textbox and set the left-padding to 20pt

Tablix with blocked layout


Tablix with stepped layout