Published on

  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide


  1. 1. Page 1 of 4 Frequently-Asked Questions about ModelSheet™ Version of 12/12/08 Contents 1 What is ModelSheet? 1 2 What are the main elements of a ModelSheet model? 1 2.1 Analysis Variables 1 2.1.1 Formulas 1 2.1.2 Dimensions 1 2.1.3 Time Series 2 2.1.4 Accounting Types 2 2.1.5 Workbooks and Worksheets 2 2.1.6 Categories 2 3 What is the workflow of building models with ModelSheet? 2 4 How can I learn more about ModelSheet? 3 5 How can I get started with ModelSheet? 3 6 How can I get help on doing basic tasks in ModelSheet? 3 1 What is ModelSheet? The ModelSheet Authoring Environment is a SaaS and/or desktop application for authoring and maintaining business models and delivering them as spreadsheets. Instead of cells and cell addresses, ModelSheet uses readable symbolic formulas (and far fewer formulas) while preserving the table layout of spreadsheets. It uses segmentation dimensions, time series and variable data types to capture model structure. ModelSheet uses these features to automate virtually all manual cell-level operations needed to build conventional spreadsheets so modelers can focus on business logic. It generates fully functional spreadsheets and re-imports edited data from spreadsheets that it generated. ModelSheet is not intended to replace spreadsheets but to simplify creating and maintaining them. ModelSheet has a companion portfolio of application solutions. • For each application, you can view an Excel workbook generated by ModelSheet on our website at . They include three financial applications, three marketing applications, and five other applications. • You can work with the ModelSheet models for these applications by getting a free trial account, which you can request at . 2 What are the main elements of a ModelSheet model? 2.1 Analysis Variables Analysis Variables are the core of a ModelSheet model. These tend to be the concepts around which a model is built, for example “Profit” “Revenue” and “Expense.” An Analysis Variable can contain Formulas (explained next), Segmentation Dimensions, Time Series, and have properties called “Accounting Types.” 2.1.1 Formulas A Formula is a basic relationships between Analysis Variables. For example, Profit = Revenue – Expense is a Formula that can be entered inside the Analysis Variable Profit to define it in terms of the other Analysis Variables. 2.1.2 Dimensions A Dimension is a list of Items that segment the total value of an Analysis Variable. For example, if the Analysis Variable Revenue is segmented geographically by country, then a Dimension (perhaps named “Countries”) that consists of a list of countries should be a Dimension of Revenue. ® Copyright © 2008 ModelSheet Software, LLC ModelSheet and the ModelSheet logo are registered trademarks of ModelSheet Software, LLC.
  2. 2. Frequently-Asked Questions about ModelSheet™ page 2 of 4 2.1.3 Time Series A Time Series captures the time periods for an Analysis Variable or for an entire model. Each Time Series consists of a starting time, and ending time, and a time grain (such as quarters or years). You can think of a Time Series as a special kind of Dimension whose Items are weeks, months, quarters, or years, where these time periods have a natural order (e.g. Q1 2012 comes before Q4 2012), and you can do arithmetic on the time periods. 2.1.4 Accounting Types An Accounting Type is a property of an Analysis Variable that tells ModelSheet how to roll up that Variable over Dimensions or over time Series. Accounting Types enable ModelSheet to automate the rolling up of many variables for you, so you don’t have to write formulas for how to combine values over Dimensions and Time Series. For example,  An Analysis Variable for sales revenue should have Accounting Type “Revenue,” which causes ModelSheet to combine revenues over countries by adding the country revenues; and to combine revenues over four quarters of a year by adding them to get annual revenue.  An Analysis Variable for average selling price should have Accounting Type “Mixed,” which causes ModelSheet to combine average prices over countries by averaging and over time periods by averaging (as opposed to adding as would be done for revenues).  An Analysis Variable for growth rate should have Accounting Type “Discrete Time Rate” that causes ModelSheet to combine growth rates over countries by averaging, and to combine growth rates over quarters by compounding to get an annual growth rates. 2.1.5 Workbooks and Worksheets The main final output of a ModelSheet model is one or more Excel workbooks. (Recall that an Excel workbook is a file that contains one or more worksheets.) During the authoring process, ModelSheet provides web workbooks and worksheets that show you what the generated Excel workbooks will look like. 2.1.6 Categories A Category is just an ordered list of Analysis Variables. Categories are unimportant to the beginner, so skip them until later. 3 What is the workflow of building models with ModelSheet? ModelSheet slips easily into the workflow of building spreadsheet models with Microsoft Excel. You get your data from the same corporate repositories, author the model in ModelSheet, and deliver in fully functional Excel workbooks. Users cannot even tell that the Excel workbooks generated by ModelSheet are not built maintained by the conventional manual processes, except they might notice certain layout and formatting features that are characteristic of workbooks generated by ModelSheet. The workflow for building models with ModelSheet has three main steps.  Build the model by specifying Dimensions and Time Series first, then Analysis Variables and Formulas, then enter numerical data.  Lay out the Analysis Variables as tables on worksheets in workbooks.  Generate one or more Excel files that you can give to report users. A key aspect of the ModelSheet workflow is that you don’t worry about sheet layout while you are specifying how the model fits together. ® Copyright © 2008 ModelSheet Software, LLC
  3. 3. Frequently-Asked Questions about ModelSheet™ page 3 of 4 ModelSheet Workflow Experiment / Prototype Edit workbook layout & format Build model Design workbook(s) & enter data in ModelSheet in ModelSheet • Analysis Variables • Worksheet Content and Layout • Dimensions • Table Layout • Time Series • Titles, Formats • Symbolic Formulas • Accounting Types • Input Data Generate Enter data into Send spreadsheet spreadsheet spreadsheet to report users workbook(s) workbook Fully automatic 4 How can I learn more about ModelSheet? We recommend 1) View the 8-minute video “Editing Models with ModelSheet” at . 2) Explore the Excel application workbooks that were generated from ModelSheet applications, on our website at . You may find a prebuilt workbook that you can use with modest editing – for example, a financial plan, sales forecasting model, or investment project analysis. We suggest that you view the worksheet “Formulas” in each Excel workbook that displays the symbolic formulas in the ModelSheet model, though these are not active formulas in Excel. 3) Visit or join the ModelSheet web interest group at . 5 How can I get started with ModelSheet? 1) Request a free ModelSheet trial account at . People have different learning styles. • If you prefer to learn the concepts first and apply them, then read the introduction to ModelSheet in the first section of the introductory tutorial at . • If you prefer to learn by doing examples and pick up the concepts from the examples, then get a trial account at and do the exercises in the introductory tutorial at . 6 How can I get help on doing basic tasks in ModelSheet? Download and print a copy of the ModelSheet Quick Reference Card at . It catalogs the most basic operations you would ® Copyright © 2008 ModelSheet Software, LLC
  4. 4. Frequently-Asked Questions about ModelSheet™ page 4 of 4 perform with ModelSheet, and provides detailed instructions on what gestures to make to accomplish those tasks. Keep it by your side as you start using ModelSheet. ® Copyright © 2008 ModelSheet Software, LLC