Out-of-the-Box Features: Profitability and Cost Management Cloud Services (PCMCS) - Rule Data Validation Report

Published October 6 2020 by Alecs Mlynarzek
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Welcome back to a new blog post about Profitability and Cost Management (PCM) applications and specifically about the tools that come included with the Software to enable you to get the most out of your investment.

In previous blog posts you have learned about:

  • Program Documentation Report, which gives you a full listing of the allocation rules that run within your models
  • the Execution Statistics Report, which gives you a rule by rule report on performance and data cells generated
  • Other System Reports, such as Dimension and POV Statistics, useful when tracking changes and impact on app performance over time
  • Rule Balancing Report - which enables users to check for each POV whether the calculation flow performed a fully balanced allocation or whether there were portions of data that fell through the allocation steps and need to be corrected

All the above reports perform an analysis of either the setup of the app, execution performance or overall calculation results.

But what if you want to analyze a single rule at a time, across all the different components: Source, Driver, Destination?

Here is where the Rule Data Validation report comes in.

Disclaimer: the PCM menu options and display can be updated. As such, screenshots contained in this blog may not be 100% aligned with your current version of Profitability and Cost Management. All images were taken from the 20.09 version of the Cloud software.

Rule Data Validation Report

The Rule Data Validation Report enables you to quickly validate source data (expense or revenue) and driver data before or after running the allocations, via 1 simple click, without the need to build Smart View reports.

Where to access the Rule Data Validation Report: System Reports menu

Available formats: PDF, EXCEL, WORD, XML, HTML

Parameters: an existing POV; a calculated Ruleset and Allocation Rule; the choice between Summary Values and Data Sample (Source or Driver) or just Summary Values.

Note: to leverage the Rule Data Validation report, the Rulesets and Rules used to calculate a Data POV must be copied onto the POV.

Note: Rule Data Validation reports can be executed only against Allocation Rules, not against Custom Calculations.

When is the Rule Data Validation Report Useful?

During testing activities, whether early on in development or even during Business as Usual, the Rule Data Validation Report can quickly indicate whether there is an issue with a particular rule and/or data point.

If the Rule Balancing report is not displaying the rule ID we are interested in, and the Execution Statistics report confirms that the number of cells updated for the given rule is null, then there are a couple of potential explanations:

  1. There is no data for the source intersection, therefore, we have nothing to allocate
  2. There is no data for the driver intersection, therefore, we have nothing to allocate by
  3. The rule set-up is incorrect, resulting in a zero-cell allocation

Rule Validation Contents and Options

The Rule Data Validation report launched for a given POV, and a rule will indicate several pieces of information:

  • Application name and type
  • POV selected
  • Ruleset and Rule reference
  • The Data option parameter that was chosen

When the report is launched with the option Summary Values Only, it will display Source Data Total and Driver Data Total, without indicating the specific intersections referenced in the rule. Choosing this option when launching the report will generate the contents in a much shorter time frame compared to the second option, which will be described further.

If there is an interest in the detail of the base member intersections that are making up the Source Data Total and the Driver Data Total, you can select the Summary Values and Data Sample option and include either Source or Driver Data or both.

Depending on the number of base-level intersections referenced in the Source Data, the resulting report can vary in length. The larger the number of intersections, the more time it will take to run the report.

How to Interpret the Contents of the Rule Validation Report?

If you run the Rule Validation report after the rule has been already executed, then the Source Data intersections will ideally show a value of 0, indicating the full amount had been allocated out. However, it will list out all the base level members in the Source intersection that have been allocated out as part of the selected rule.

The driver data reference information will display a full list of driver metrics and the corresponding data value. If there is a mismatch between source intersections and driver data intersections, then the rule will either allocate partially or not allocate at all.

Note: the Rule Data Validation detailed report will only display the first 1000 base level members selections in the Source intersections.

For a Source intersection that has not been processed yet through allocations, the Data Total reference will display the value to be allocated:

 

Takeaway

When launching allocations in PCM, you will sometimes receive messages in the Job Library indicating the Number of updated cells count is Zero for Rule ''R000_NameOfRule”. The Rule Data Validation Report will enable you to quickly identify the cause of such a warning message, whether that is related to missing source data, missing driver data, or, potentially, a mismatch between the two.

Users often prefer a quick check of a rule via the Rule Data Validation Report, as it is fast and error-proof. These reports are also useful during development, as they can quickly validate intersections of data across all the relevant dimensions within an application.

Conclusion

Alongside the other System Reports included with PCM, the Rule Data Validation Reports offer a complete set of tools to troubleshoot and validate a Profitability Model data set and Rule configuration. These types of reports are useful in situations when fast data validation is required to confirm either data loads or satisfactory rule set-up.

Watch this space for a future post related to Model Data Validation – how to validate your Rules against the latest Master Data structures and how to verify that there are no references to previously removed items that could potentially cause failures during run time.

For comments, questions, or suggestions for future topics, please reach out to us at infosolutions@alithya.com.  Visit our blog regularly for new posts about Cloud updates and other Oracle Cloud Services such as Planning and Budgeting, Financial Consolidation, Account Reconciliation, and Enterprise Data Management.  Follow Alithya on social media for the latest information about EPM, ERP, and Analytics solutions to meet your business needs.

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