What’s New in Oracle EPM

This highly-anticipated upgrade offers a significant new feature set, improved performance, and increased reliability for its users. Throughout the platform, new features – like ASO databases for Planning and greater administrative functionality in Smartview – promise to streamline the planning process and reduce total cost of ownership. In this article, we’ll explore the key benefits offered by EPM for both end users and system administrators who choose to make the move to this latest version.

Hyperion Planning

ASO Plan Types in Planning Applications


In prior releases of EPM, organizations often had to make the difficult choice between Aggregate Storage Option (ASO) databases for fast reporting capabilities and Block Storage Option (BSO) databases for calculation flexibility. With Hyperion Planning, those days now over are over: the latest version allows the implementation of ASO plan types within Hyperion Planning applications.  Web forms can now be created to write data directly to ASO databases within an application.

Key benefits of this feature includes:

  • Better User Experience – with faster roll-ups of data, business users can spend more time doing value-add Planning activities and less time waiting for the application to be ready
  •  Easier Maintenance – easy, centralized management of ASO and BSO models will keep your administrators happy and reduce total cost of ownership of the solution
  •  Advanced Planning Modeling – ASO databases in Planning opens the door to more complex dimensionality; performance considerations will no longer restrict advanced Essbase models from being developed in Planning

plng1Task List Dashboards and Reports

Hyperion Planning-enabled organizations love Task Lists because they provide users with step-by-step guidance through the Forecast / Planning process.  Prior to v., centralized governance of task lists was limited. Now, in Hyperion Planning Version, Task List Dashboards and Reports help track progress through the planning process and give immediate visibility to any issues as they arise.

The Task List Dashboard visually shows users how they are progressing through the Plan process with either Gantt Charts or Pie Charts.

EPM-2Enhanced Metadata Management

The Outline Load Utility saw significant enhancements in Hyperion Planning version and Now, in the latest release, loading metadata to Classic Planning applications has become even easier. Most functionality of the Outline Load Utility is now available directly in the Planning web interface. Administrators looking to perform a quick, no-hassle metadata load can now do this from within a familiar Planning interface rather than needing to use error-prone command line processes.

In addition to metadata imports, this new metadata management functionality is also capable of exporting metadata from applications.


On-the-Fly Member Creation

Hyperion Planning out-of-the-box modules (e.g. Workforce Planning and Project Financial Planning) now allow end users to create on-the-fly members. This enables provisioned users to define sparse members using business rules and then use those members in Planning web forms. Even better, this process does not require an administrator to perform a database refresh. This lessens the support burden on administrators and helps to align the technology to the needs of the business


Smart View

Much of the changes reflect only for

Hyperion Planning – A new Hyperion Planning Admin Extension allows users to work with metadata within Smart View. This includes editing and importing Planning dimensions and members.

Below shows the “Dimensions” folder that appears when logging into “Oracle Hyperion Planning” through smart view.

Note – Neither the Time Period nor Attribute dimensions are available for edit through Smart View

EPM-4Below is what appears in excel when a dimension is updated through smart view. Click the ‘Submit’ button to push a metadata updates to planning.



Most of the enhancements related to Hyperion Essbase will impact administrators more than the users. These improvements include additional calculation functions as well as command and configuration setting used to improved calculation efficiency.

  • @CREATEBLOCK calculation function that allows for the creation of a block for a specific sparse member name or sparse member combination and assign a #MISSING value.
  • Used against a single sparse member name
  • A sparse combination can be utilized for a specific sparse member combination
  • Member functions can be used (e.g. @DESCEDANTS(“New York”))
  • Function can be used within a FIX statement to improve calculation efficiency
  • Can be used in a member formula
  • Below is a @CREATEBLOCK function example

@CREATEBLOCK (“100-10″–>”New York”)

  • Additional Calculation Functions include:
    • @INTERSECT – Returns the intersection of members that appear in two specified lists of members.
    • @ISMBRUDA – Returns TRUE if the specified user-defined attribute (UDA) exists for the specified member at calculation time. This is different than @ISUDA in that it analyzes a specific member instead of an entire dimension
    • @ISRANGENONEMPTY – Tests for the existence of data values to improve performance of complex dense processing. If this function returns true, values exist for the specified range. If it returns false, the range is empty.
    • @MEMBERAT – Returns the specified member in a list of members. 1 references the first member in the range specifies, while a -1 specifies the last member in the range.
    • @RANGEFIRSTVAL – Returns the first value, in a range of the specified mbrList that satisfies the criterion specified in the first function parameter.
    • @RANGELASTVAL – Returns the last value, in a range of the specified mbrList that satisfies the criterion specified in the first function parameter.
  • The ability to use Runtime Substitution Variable in Calculation scripts using the new Calculation Command “SET RUNTIMESUBVARS”
  • Shared member can be displayed with qualified names (qualified names = parent.child)
  • New Configuration setting include:
    • ENABLERTSVLOGGIING – Determines whether Oracle Essbase logs runtime substitution variables that are used in a calculation script
    • ESTIMATEDHASHSIZE – Specifies, in millions, the estimated number of member name and alias name strings that are loaded into memory
    • UNICODEENABLE – Enables Essbase Server to create Unicode-mode applications and to migrate applications to Unicode mode, without needing to set the Essbase Server to Unicode mode using Oracle Essbase Administration Services, MaxL, or the API.

let me know your comments and feedback.





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