Thursday, June 1, 2023

Audit Log - Showing Internal References

 Just a heads up on an issue with the audit log. When a member is moved from one parent to another, the audit log captures that and shows the "from member" and "to member." Only, it doesn't. What shows is an internal reference, which isn't helpful in determining the member labels that are seen in the application.

Apparently this is a platform bug, so not just related to FCC. It's also not always been this way, so hopefully it gets fixed soon.

Monday, March 6, 2023

FCC Release 23.03 - Metadata Validation for Movement Members

In the 23.03 release of FCC there is a new metadata validation that requires that all members under FCCS_ClosingBalance have a consolidation operator of Addition. On the surface this makes sense; however, it will cause major issues with cash flow.

It is common for cash flow to require various types of manual adjustments and calculations that are not part of the closing balance calculation. But, if a movement member is not under FCCS_ClosingBalance, then the data does not consolidate.

So what I and many others have done is to put these members somewhere under FCCS_ClosingBalance with a consolidation operator of Ignore. That way the data consolidates and does not impact the closing balance.

With the 23.03 release, when a metadata validation is run, this happens:

I filed an SR for the company I'm currently working with for this issue. Unless Oracle removes the restriction that members must be under FCCS_ClosingBalance to consolidate, I expect that this validation will get pulled back.

Monday, February 27, 2023

Oracle EPM: Hierarchy Calculations

Most implementations have some statistical calculations, particularly with accounts. There are multiple levels of calculation complexity. Member formulas is usually the go-to place to write these; however, for simple calculations, there's another option. And it has a benefit that member formulas don't have!

Create an alternate hierarchy with the parent member representing the result and the children representing the inputs. Then use the consolidation operator to add/subtract/multiply/divide or calculate a percentage. In the below example, FCCS_Gross Profit is being divided by FCCS_Gross Sales to calculate a gross margin percentage. And with the percentage option there is no need to multiply the results by 100.

If the calculation needs parentheses, then create a mid level parent to represent that part of the formula.

Now, the benefit. A user can view the result on a report, data grid, etc. and then drill down into it to see the components. The result member is just a parent member, after all. So that's helpful.

Monday, February 13, 2023

Applying the Most Basic IT Concept to Oracle EPM Cloud: Reset Service

There are different reasons why I write blog posts. Sometimes to illustrate something or to talk about the merits of attending Kscope23. You will be going to Denver, CO, USA this June, correct? If you haven't registered, may I suggest going to and checking it out.

This one is a reminder that no matter how impossible something seems, there might be the easiest fix for it.

Another consultant reached out with the following problem: an admin user who is properly provisioned with the service administrator role logs into an environment and doesn't see the admin cards on the home screen. My response was maybe the navigation flow has been customized or maybe the admin is logging in with a native ID instead of the SSO ID or along those lines. Both of which I've seen. They got back to me with a simple answer: they reset the service and everything is fine.

Resetting the service is like rebooting a computer. You flip the switch off and on, wait a few minutes, and see if the problem clears up. The thing is, how do you reboot an Oracle EPM Cloud environment? You really can't go to the nearest Oracle data center and start flipping power switches (at least I hope not!). Fortunately, Oracle provided a way to do it: EPM Automate.

Here are the two (well, three steps needed). Either with a command line or a batch script, log into the environment, run the reset service command, wait, and then log out.

AutoTune optimizes the database (use for Planning, FCC, and Tax Provision only) and -f skips the confirmation step. Here's the doc link on how to use the resetservice function.

Resetting the service can also be useful when reports don't run, data forms don't open, or just something seems off. I have reset a service for all of these reasons.

When in doubt about something not working right (or before trying to resolve seemingly impossible problems), reset. It works for personal computers; it works for Oracle EPM Cloud.

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

FCC January 2023 Update - DO NOT CHANGE Dense/Sparse!

Hello and welcome to 2023! The first blog post this year is a warning regarding the FCC (Financial Consolidation and Close cloud service) update for this month.

The 23.01 (January 2023) release somehow opened up the dense/sparse settings for the dimensions in the application. Dense and sparse (if a dimension is not dense then it's sparse) relate to how the underlying Essbase database is structured for saving data. Below, the Period and Movement dimensions are set to Dense (checkmark enabled).  If your application shows only the Account as dense, see the bottom of this post.

The dense/sparse column is normally read-only (greyed out) but as you can see the column is editable. Do not make any changes to this! Untold calamities will occur - seriously, there is no telling what will work and not work. Insertion rules, for one, will have problems. Oracle has already worked through the optimal dense/sparse settings, determined the optimal setup, and built the application around them. A fix to put the setting back into read-only mode is under development.

If your application shows only the Account as dense, then consider running the migration to make Period and Movement dense. There are several benefits, the biggest being the consolidation time will be a lot quicker.

There are several steps to do. The process is not hard, but should be done in test to confirm, particularly if insertion rules exist. Here is the link for the documentation (note if two rows of text show this is one link that is wrapping on the screen).


Friday, September 23, 2022

ARCS - Need more data storage?

More than the other Oracle Cloud EPM applications, Account Reconciliation ("ARCS") has the most need for file attachments. For each recon, there could very will be a requirement to upload a bank statement or other supporting documentation. If these are stored in the regular EPM database, it can quickly use all of the available space, make snapshots larger (since the attachments are included), increase the time to clone production to test, etc.

Fortunately, Oracle has thought about this and has a solution ready. Instead of storing the attachments within the ARCS environment, attachments can be stored in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Object Storage. Basically (and I'm sure that I'm oversimplifying this) it's like having on steroids. The easy part of this is that the product is built to use it, so once it is configured the users do nothing different and have the same experience.

To enable, go into System Settings and on the left click Object Storage. Provide the URL, ID, and password and click Validate and Save.

Once enabled, a migration process moves existing attachments to the object storage. Any new attachments automatically go there. The bottom part of the screen above, Attachments and References, provides information about the items in Object Storage.

Another benefit of switching to OCI Object Storage is that the administrator can choose to increase the maximum file attachment size from 20MB to 100MB.

In case you're wondering, yes, there is a cost. The cost is US$0.0255 per GB per month. So 150GB of storage would cost $45.90 per year.

If attachments are not a huge part of account recs, then this probably isn't needed. But if attachments are a way of life, then this option should be considered.

Here is the pricing link for details:

Here is the link in the help regarding setup:

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Consolidation Dimension, DSO, and Solve Order

With FCC the change to DSO (where the movement and period dimensions are dense) really speeds everything up. One area that has still seemed slow involves QTD and YTD reporting. The fix for this is to adjust the solve order for the consolidation dimension. All of the dynamic parents should have a solve order of 51 (not 50 or 52 but 51).

This change is scheduled to be pushed to the pods with the June 2022 update.

In case you think I have a crystal ball or a hotline direct to the development team, you're right, I do. But actually I found out about this on a cloud customer connect post to the FCC forum. So even if you don't have a question to post, there are still benefits to following the forum and finding out what others are saying.

By the way, here's the original cloud customer connect post. See the bottom of the responses for the details.