The tablix feature provides a level of flexibility that can be very powerful to the knowledgeable SSRS user. It combines all of the aspects of a table, a list, and a matrix into one easy to manipulate tool. Now, if you were to look at the BIDS toolbox for your report, you may ask yourself, “Self, where is the tablix tool? Did you accidentally delete it during the great feature purge of Twenty-ought-seven?” The answer is no. The tool itself is a table, list, or matrix. By dragging one of these items to your design panel, you are actually creating a matrix, and it can be switched seamlessly between the tools by simply manipulating the rows and columns inside. At the heart, it’s a completely different feature. However, if you have your doubts that it’s different at all, all you need to do is look at the properties at the object type.
So, what does the tablix give you? It gives you an unlimited number of side-by-side adjacent groups on rows and columns, greater layout flexibility (stepped groups vs. nested blocked groups), and no longer having to decide up front if you need a table or matrix layout, because you can change it on the fly or adjust for new requirements later.
For example, to switch from a regular blocked to a step layout, without using the wizard (because wizards are lame, ex: ),
It can easily be done in four steps. We start out with:
It’s as simple as that. You’ve just gone from a block layout to step layout in under a minute. Since you didn’t alter the actual grouping, your aggregate functions should still remain intact, so no further maintenance is required.