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Exploration: Pros and Cons

Exploration provides ad-hoc analysis to Planning Analytics users that allows them to pivot tables and drill through.

Advantage of using Exploration

  1. Easy to create and manipulate

Creating an exploration view is easy; just right-click on the cube or cube view and select exploration. It will automatically open a view in excel where user can play around with the dimensions by drilling down to details.

  1. Fast response time

Exploration provides a faster responds time when retrieving data sets.

  1. Dynamic rows and columns

With the capabilities of pivoting data with the use of TM1 dimension, you are also able to filter the rows and columns by editing the set for the dimension.

  1. Support Hierarchies

Prior to the introduction of hierarchy in Planning Analytics, the term hierarchy was used interchangeably with roll up or consolidation. However, moving forward hierarchy should not be confused with roll up or consolidation. A dimension can have multiple hierarchies with their own set of consolidation can include elements shared across multiple hierarchies. You can use hierarchies and their set in Exploration.

  1. Utilize MDX Statement

With MDX, you are able to create dynamic sets that will provide greater flexibility in your report.

  1. Writeback to Planning Analytics cubes

Unlike Quick Report, Exploration allows you to writeback data to the Planning Analytics cubes.

  1. Source structure for other reports

With Exploration, you can pivot the dimensions around until you have your desired data layout that you can use to create another type of report by using the Convert To function in PAX. You can convert exploration to quick, dynamic, custom and universal report.

  1. Save as View

In Exploration, you can save views that can be utilized in TM1Web or PAW.

Disadvantages of Exploration

  1. One cube per sheet

The flexibility of moving dimension around prevents you from nesting other reports or cubes in the report or view.

  1. Cannot utilise Excel formula

The downside of using exploration is you cannot utilise Excel formula as it isn’t intuitive to know when you have adjusted filtering in dimension or moved dimension that the formula could be using an empty cell reference.

  1. Formatting limitation

Excel will allow you to format any excel sheet, however when you try to refresh the data, all data formatting will revert back to the original formatting if Use Server Formats is activated.

  1. PAW and TM1Web (PASS) Publishing Restriction

The PAX ribbon provides users access to publish Excel reports. However, publishing Exploration would not be ideal as it removes the flexibility of moving and filtering dimension.

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