PODs* let you create a template without recreating a tag. Instead, you use an existing template's tags and tables to create new tags for other templates. You then simply drag and drop these PODs into a new template.
*Portable Object Doclets: Doclets are snippets of Microsoft Word objects, and these are portable, meaning that they can be moved and used in other templates.
PODs can include individual tags, sets of tags, and entire tables. They are defined once but may be reused in any number of templates, any number of times.
This means template developers spend less time constructing queries or trying to remember how to create a particular report construct, such as a table of financial data or a conditional agreement clause. And non-technical users find it easier than ever to connect to data sources and insert tags and data into templates.
Creating PODs may be done by the person who uses the PODs, or someone else may create them once so others can use them again and again.
When you run a report that has been created using a POD, you don't have to do anything with the POD (RDLX) file. The only exception is when you're using datasets. In those cases, you will need the POD at runtime.
PODs to be used in Word need to be created in Word. PODs to be used in Excel need to be created in Excel.
The POD (.rdlx) file
The RDLX file can have a custom icon for any and all entries.
To assign a custom icon, you need to uuencode a .ico file and then place the uuencoded characters inside an <icon></icon> element that is a direct child of the POD item, datasource, and/or variable node (see attached sample).
The original .ico file should have a 16x16 and 48x48 bitmap.
This video will show you what PODs are used for and how they can increase the speed and efficiency of building reports.