My favorite new Anaplan features in 2023

edited January 18 in Blog

Each year, Anaplan strives to not just maintain, but to enhance their platform in the form of periodic monthly new releases. This can take various forms. It could take the form of major sweeping updates like unveiling the New UX or Management Reporting pages. On the other hand, it could be focused on more micro-level changes like enhancing KPI conditional formatting or enabling dynamic text across all pages. Regardless, each year never disappoints when it comes to exciting new Anaplan features. Big or small, each user is sure to have their favorites. This doesn’t just correlate to most complex or broad, but often encompass small, yet impactful, updates that drastically improve day-to-day experience for both builders and users alike.

Here are four of my favorite features from 2023

Action run time load

One of the most helpful updates of the year has been the ability to see the most recent run time of a particular action. Although this is a simple, often overlooked update, it has proven immensely valuable to me over the course of this year. Working on several use cases that were heavily reliant on running actions efficiently, getting this level of detail was a welcomed addition to the action tab. The most obvious benefit is being able to identify bottlenecks in large processes.

Is there a particular action that is drastically slowing down a process?

If you identify an action that is an outlier for one reason or another, it is a good indication to check the source data.

  • Is the data clean?
  • Is the saved view properly configured?
  • Are there unnecessary hierarchy levels and/or time periods included in the action that are slowing it down?

Conversely, if an action is too quick, it could be an indication not all relevant data is being included. This helps aid administrative maintenance to the model and provides insights into model efficiency.

Double click to sort in UX

Another favorite release came in the form of the ability to double click to sort within the UX directly on a grid. I have noticed this change be a seamless process for users to pick up in real time, which eases the burden on training or buy-in from users who come from other backgrounds like excel. This also eases the burden on the model builders because there does not need to be as much back-end development to create dynamic sorting on multiple columns.

This quick and easy tool gives users the ability to toggle through all types of sorting options at the (double) click of a button. It’s extremely flexible, so the model isn’t as beholden to overarching module parameters that may be more preferable to certain users vs others.

Also, having the ability to limit this capability grid by grid is a welcomed alternative if needed. This is especially true where synchronized scrolling is enabled.

Number formatted lines defaulting to summary method: “none”

This next release — although certainly requiring some time getting used to — has been a welcome one. A key concept to grasp when building in Anaplan is “efficiency” — both in terms of logic but also the space that logic occupies. This feature helps promote efficient model building by limiting unnecessary space. Not every ‘staging’ or ‘test’ line item can keep summary methods as “none,” but I have found a large portion often can. This is especially true during development sprints when logic is continuously being refined. This feature forces architects and model builders to critically assess space and summary methods proactively, instead of after the fact.

Taking a more mindful approach to development has been a largely beneficial even in such a short period of time. Beyond normal build activities, this feature is also especially useful if a model has space constraints — as any new number-formatted line items added will take up significantly less space without summaries turned on.

Defaulting new numbered line items to summaries of "none" makes it less likely there are as many unnecessary summary methods existing the model. While this is not a perfect indicator of whether a model uses space as efficiently as possible, it does provide an added layer of context that architects can rely upon when analyzing size. Overall, this somewhat under-the-radar change has had a big impact on streamlining logic, structure, and space.

Form validation options

Additionally, form validation options are another impressive new feature this year. This is another simple, yet quite effective, update. It eliminates the need to develop more tedious conditional formatting rules, which is a great time-saver during hectic development sprints. Aside from just model building, this is also a quick and easy way of integrating or training users. This could be relating to general assumptions or even more specific business rules. Either way, it can help guide users into planning more rationally, which will allow for cleaner and more accurate outputs. This is especially true if the business can help model builders determine what the appropriate ‘thresholds’ are for user entries, which establishes a base line expectation of what the model will calculate and makes validation easier. It also helps prevent user errors when entering assumptions that may have unforeseen downstream impacts. Form validation is a straightforward feature to get used to, whether you are seasoned Anaplan veteran or a new user.


Although some of my personal favorites, the several new features mentioned above barely scratch the surface on the value Anaplan has brought to customers this year in the form of new product releases. There are so many exceptional enhancements to the software and the general user experience that not only assist end users but streamline the model builder experience as well. It’s exciting to imagine what other new features will be released before the end of the year and into the next, as well as the benefits and process enhancements we will realize as a result.

What were your favorite features released in 2023? Leave a comment!


About the author: Matthew Valianti, Manager, Enterprise Performance Solutions.
Matthew is a Solution Architect & Master Anaplanner with a multitude of experience within the financial and consumer goods industries who specializes in helping companies realize their Connected Planning vision. Matthew also specializes in training model builders to properly utilize Anaplan.


  • @PhilippErkinger - I've not really used this practically. Can you or any one explains what does this really do and benefits of this feature in simpler way. "Unlink revisions after restore point". I wanted to understand it's pros and cons.

  • @Dikshant, it can simplify fixing a bug in a deployed production model. With this feature, you can roll back the model before the faulty revision was released, unlink the revision tag from the production model and still maintain compatibility between the development and production model.

  • AlejandroGomez
    edited January 15

    The run time report per action brings the most value from a model builder stand point, in my opinion. Otherwise there was little we could do to obtain this information, while for the sorting, formatting or summary (while also useful) model builders and users had other ways of getting to the same result (as pointed out in the post, more tedious ways, but was possible nevertheless).

    It is not listed on the post, but I had a look at geomapping and I loved it. I think is very useful for Supply Chain applications to visualise the supply network and therefore gain better understanding of lead times, primary suppliers and other important considerations.