When to use Line item VS List ?

Regular Contributor

When to use Line item VS List ?

Hi Guys 


Is there an approach you guys use when deciding on line item vs list ? 


for eg. 


I am loading three different kinds of volume data 

Volume type 1

Volume type 2

Volume type 3


Data is loaded by month 


Option 1 

Create a module with 3 line item and time dimension


Line item Volume type 1

Line item Volume type 2

Line itme Volume type 3


Option 2

Create a module with 1 line item called Volume and 1 list ( volume type 1 , Volume type 2 , Volume type 3)  and time 

(Volume type List ) X Time 

Volume line item 


Which option would you choose and not choose and Why ?

Is there a best practise for these kind of scenarios or it doesn't really matter ? 

If you have another way of doing it what is it and why ? 



Master Anaplanner/Community Boss

Re: When to use Line item VS List ?

If you think the volume type will grow (volume type 4, 5...etc)...then you should go for a dimension. So it is easily maintainable.




Certified Master Anaplanner

Re: When to use Line item VS List ?



Lists are essentially Master Data, which have the following attributes:

1. Lists can be referred by many modules, (Normally once you ask yourself the question of 'Will these items be used in many modules?', it should be quite evident)

2. Lists have properties that help with LookUp and Sum

3. Selective Access can be controlled with List


Line items are more of a measures, and are meant for containing values or calculation.


Like what @ArunManickam said, your requirement fits that of a 'List'.




Master Anaplanner/Community Boss

Re: When to use Line item VS List ?

As above, expansion is key - The 'S' of PLANS is for sustainable; build for the future

PLANS - This is how we model

Also, the point above about re-used. for calculations we say "calculate once, reference many times".  The same applies for structures.  If you need to repeat the line items many times, a list will be better


But the other aspect to bear in mind is what is the logic for Volume1, Volume2, Volume3?. 

If the logic is the same or similar then a list would be simpler; One tip here.  Don't write a formula like this:

IF ITEM(VolumeTypes)=VolumeTypes.Volume1 THEN xx*yyy ELSE IF ITEM(VolumeTypes)=Volume2 THEN xx/yyy ELSE.........


If is better to have a module dimensioned by Volume and have a boolean flag signifying the logic type; it is much more flexible and efficient (especially if some volume types hare the same logic)


If each type has a very different type of logic then it might be better to have line items; remember you can always bring numeric line items together using a line item subset


I hope that helps