Hichert Partner Logo

Follow @ibcs_a

Comments since 2015-07-01

Andrej Lapajne 2017-05-26 12:23 am 0
UN 4.2 Unify time series analyses Introduction
I think here we're missing a few more time series analyses terms. It looks like UN 4.2 is focused on montly periods, but in practice we also have sub-monthly time series analyses

Most importantly in operational reporting (daily, weekly reports)::
MTD (Month-to-Date) = beginning of month to present date
RoM (Rest-of Month) = present date to the end of current month (the equivalent of RoY or YTG as you call it)
rolling 7 days ... no idea what a nice abbreviation for that would be

Also moving beyond the period of 1 year we frequently have the CAGR (Compound annual growth rate).

There's more, but at least the abovementioned time-series analysis should be added here.

Andrej Lapajne 2017-05-26 12:10 am 0
UN 4.2 Unify time series analyses
Hi Juergen, regarding your "YTG" (Year-to-Go): in my experience the most standard term for that is RoY (Rest-of-Year). So YTD+ROY = FY (Full Year). 
jens herrmann 2017-05-16 10:37 pm 1
UN 3.2 Unify scenarios and-Budget-period

We  should change the current definition of Plan and Budget not as ‘the mental anticipation of future actions’ but more as ‘a target to compare with/ to reach to’


A very common use case in reporting is to compare the company's own data against various "Benchmarks" / targets (eg.  Market avg,  estimated sales , etc.).

Instead of adding new semantics for benchmarks we came after a long discussions to the conclusion (Rolf thank you alot for the given feedback) that a generic benchmark is in fact from the same nature as IBCSs  Plan/ Budget.

IBCS would benefit from a more fleshed out definition of Plan/Budget/Benchmark  because of  its frequent use in daily business.

Our proposal is  as follows:


PL is a target of a key performance indicator (KPI) and  has two subtypes.

  1. 'toReach' (Benchmarks mit Zielcharakter) a scenario of mental anticipation of future actions

  2. 'toCompare' (Benchmarks mit Vergleichscharakter) a scenario of 3rd parties actions


  1. Showing  planned sales data. (We plan to sell  amount of X); Compare planned sales vs AC sales

  2. Showing market avg data    (Avg. sales in branch X); Compare own sales  vs competitors sales

Off course wording is not final and we interested in additional input/ feedback 
Beat Honegger 2017-05-12 09:22 am 0
UN 2.3 Unify the positon of legends and labels Introduction
You are right, we have also to consider when one label is very long the other labels can be far away from the chart. In table we have lines which help to find the right line.
Bojan Scepanovic 2017-05-12 08:55 am 0
UN 2.3 Unify the positon of legends and labels Introduction
We should unify legends position in charts. In my opinion legends should always have left alignment.

For example, legends in tables always have left alignment, while in charts (stacked column, bar charts...) if we position legend to the left, it has right alignment and if we position legend to the right, it has left alignment.

In my opinion it should be standardized (left alignment), becaus if legends always have left alignment it would be easier and faster to analyse the report, especially when data series labels do not have the same lenght.

When readers read some text, they naturally read from left to the right and from top to the bottom of the page. If labels in this case have the right alignment, then visually labels are more difficult to read.

Legends will be positioned outside of the charts which is allowed by IBCS standards.

Michael Schelkle 2017-04-28 11:33 am 0
EX 1 Use correct object type Introduction

Since I also quite often had the challenge to decide whether to use a table or a chart I want to join this discussion and give you some insight based on reviewed literature about this topic. My personal opinion is that we first have to remember the process of business information visualization, e.g. referring to Gene Zelazny:

1)      1) What message do I want to convey?

2)      2) Which kind of comparison do I want to show (e.g., structures, correlations or detailed numbers)?

3)      3) Define the visualization type (e.g., table or bar chart)

These steps build on one another and therefore each previous step defines the subsequent step. For the distinction whether to use a table or a chart I want to refer to cognitive fit theory of Iris Vessey. Cognitive fit theory proposes that the correspondence between task and information presentation format leads to superior task performance for individual users. It describes the relationship between graphical and tabular representations and the types of tasks they support. Based on studies, cognitive fit theory provides an explanation for performance differences among users across different presentation formats such as tables or graphs. The hereafter summarizes aspects of  Vessey’s (1991) research paper Cognitive Fit: A Theory-Based Analysis of the Graphs Versus Tables Literature. Decision Sciences 22, 219–240 (1991).

Graphs are spatial problem representations since they present spatially related information. Spatial representations facilitate viewing the information contained therein at a glance without addressing the elements separately or analytically. Hence, perceptual processes provide an appropriate access to the data in a graph.

Tables represent discrete data values. Discrete data values are the only type of information directly represented in tables. Analytical processes provide an appropriate access to the data in a table.

The first type of tasks (those said to be facilitated by graphs) assess the problem area as a whole rather than as discrete data values.


"Between the years 1100 and 1438 whose earnings increased most rapidly, those of the wool, silk, or Calimala merchants?"  à This is a comparison of trends and is spatial in nature.

"Did sales exceed the cost of goods sold?" à This question requires assessing relationships in the data. It is, therefore, spatial in nature.

The second type of tasks (those said to be facilitated by tables) involve extracting discrete data values. These tasks, then, lead to precise data values, which are referred to as "symbolic" tasks.


"How much did the wool merchants earn in the year 11oo?" à This question requires a specific amount as the response. It is, therefore, symbolic in nature

"What was the company's net income for the past year?" à This question also requires a specific amount as the response and is therefore symbolic in nature.

I therefore recommend to update the introductory paragraph of EXPRESS referring to cognitive fit theory to give IBCS users guidance on when to use a table and when to use a chart.

Andrej Lapajne 2017-04-21 04:47 am 0
UN 4.1 Unify scenario analyses Introduction
Just to add a small detail on markers. If you use standard marker "size" (in Excel or other tools) for markers of different shape, then you will probably get different marker areas:

All the above markers have the size of 5pt. In my opinion that is not OK, that is why we are using a correction ("equalization") of area sizes in Zebra BI like this:

So the rule "Marker size is 0,5 font size" in IBCS (at least it used to be defined like that) is not completely pixel-accurate. It would be better to define the area sizes in FS2 or pt2.

Andrej Lapajne 2017-04-21 04:32 am 1
UN 4.1 Unify scenario analyses Introduction
Here is the detailed picture:

Andrej Lapajne 2017-04-21 04:30 am 0
UN 4.1 Unify scenario analyses Introduction
Hi, I agree with Rolf, I think the "lollipops" are correct. I have noticed that some people are still using the old notation from 2013 with the markers colored in red/green (it used to be called "Needles") or even an older one, where the drop line is black and the markers are red/green (do not do that please...)

Since I was the one who suggested that this is not OK and am thus responsible for this change back in IBCS 1.0, I am uploading the original PowerPoint file with a more detailed explanation:

Andrej Lapajne 2017-04-21 04:12 am 0
Missing Topics MT 3
PS. I have struggled to post my comment. I guess it was too long or had too many links and pictures. I try again to post the original PowerPoint file (some 5 years old...) with the ideas described below:
© 2015 IBCS Association. Except where otherwise noted licensed under Creative Commons BY-SA 4.0 International.