1. Modeling
  2. Model building recommendations

An Anaplan model represents different aspects of your business that you can use for connected planning. 

Before you build a model, it's important that you consider the business cases you want to address, such as budgeting, sales, and planning. Then, you can identify the facts about your business that help to create your model. For example, your locations, products, and people.

A model contains modules, line items, and dimensions. Use these components to represent each aspect of your business.

Modules

Modules are key components of an Anaplan model. Each module represents a specific function, such as margin calculation, employee expense planning, or profit and loss reports. Use modules to enter data and calculate values.

You can categorize your modules into functional areas. Functional areas display in the Table of contents .

Publish module data to a dashboard to enable users to understand and work with a model. You can also save different data views from modules to analyse data from other perspectives. 

Line items

Use line items to measure data in your model. For example, in a Profit and Loss module, you might want to measure revenue, cost of sales, margin, expenses, and profit. Add a line item for each business area, and configure each line item in the module's Blueprint.

Dimensions 

Use dimensions to form the structure of a module. Pivot dimensions on a module's rows, columns, and pages.

By default, all models include the Time and Versions dimensions, and the Organization and Users default lists. Other dimensions include lists, which you can use to group related items in a model, such as employees in a department, products, or geographic regions.

Use the Time dimension to set the timescale for your model's calendar. Depending on your requirements, you can specify if planning is done by months, quarters, or years.

Versions let you compare different scenarios in a model. Each model has two default versions: Actual and Forecast. For example, use versions to compare actual and forecast sales data in your model.

Other model elements

In a model, you can also:

You can enter data manually, import data from external sources, or use formulas to pull data from other line items in your model.

Model components, such as dimensions, are local to a model, but can be updated with data from another model. If you change any data directly in your model, the model automatically recalculates all affected cells.