OneStream Extensible Dimensionality

Corporate Performance Management

Before you can understand Extensible Dimensionality, it is important to understand the Corporate Performance Management landscape. Historically, Performance management vendors like Oracle, provided separate products for Financial Consolidations (Hyperion Financial Management) and Planning (Hyperion Planning). The primary reason for separate applications is to avoid the comingling of actual data with budget or forecast data. By avoiding any interaction, users mitigate the risk of corruption, deletion, or tampering of the actuals data. This is extremely important in the world of performance management as actuals are considered to be of the utmost importance and any data issue surrounding them could become disastrous.

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While building separate applications has been the traditional method to avoid these issues, doing so requires an enormous effort on the part of corporations, consultants, and other business experts. Not only does the corporate planning team need to develop and maintain these applications but they also need to integrate them with one another for reliable and consistent reporting. As you can imagine this is very costly and time consuming for all involved.

Extensible Dimensionality combats this issue in two ways:

  1. Allows individual business units to produce management reports or statutory consolidations at various levels.

  2. Allows for budgeting and planning at various levels of detail to satisfy unique business needs even if those needs are independent from the overall corporate planning process.

Extensible Dimensionality allows OneStream to accomplish this all within a single application without affecting actuals data!

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What is Extensible Dimensionality?

Extensible Dimensionality is a powerful tool that allows variations of metadata to be housed in a single application (metadata is data that describes other data. Common metadata uses include names like account, month, period, entity, etc.). It works by using a standard corporate chart of accounts built at various levels of detail for the entire corporate structure.

Once created, each Business Unit would be able to expand on the standard set of metadata e.g. Accounts to satisfy their specific reporting requirements in either an actuals or budget/planning scenario.

OneStream is able to accomplish this because Extensible Dimensionality keeps the overall corporate structure intact while also allowing the individual business units the ability to “drill down” into the hierarchical structure of the data.

The primary benefit to this methodology is that the unique business unit reporting structure will always reconcile back to the original corporate structure (since it is derived from it). This will alleviate the operational burden typically placed on the finance team throughout the process. 

Example

Consider a Multimedia company that has products across several platforms - Digital, Television, Print, and Radio. Executives have decided that products should be segregated into two sub categories, Advertising and Other, for reporting and planning purposes. However, the individual advertising platforms wish to track data at a more granular level that is unique to their overall business.

The desired product roll ups can be seen below.

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As mentioned earlier, this was traditionally handled by building separate business applications. However, OneStream and Extensible Dimensionality allow developers the ability to create one all-encompassing structure, as seen below.

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The application can now be pushed out to the various Business Units who can calibrate and use desired member data, as needed, to create unique individual reports. This provides a tremendous amount of flexibility when considering the various ways, a planning application might use metadata versus a consolidation application. The OneStream Platform allows business users the ability to quickly and confidently toggle application settings to easily adjust hierarchical data as needed.

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Once Planning is complete at the business unit level, Corporate Reporting becomes as simple as aggregating and collecting the data. Since all planning processes are derived from the same initial metadata structure, there is no need to validate or integrate data later on in the process.

OneStream’s Extensible Dimensionality feature is able to combat a decades old issue in one seamless technological solution. Ultimately, Extensible Dimensionality is able to make the corporate planning and consolidations process easier, faster, and more cost effective than ever before.

For more information on implementing OneStream and Extensible Dimensionality please contact us.