NOTE: The following information is also attached as a PDF for downloading and using off-line.
The process of designing a model will help you:
When you begin a project, you gather information and requirements using a number of tools. These include:
To solve a problem, you must completely understand the current situation. Performing this step provides this information and the first steps toward the solution.
Front to back design has been identified as the preferred method for model design. This approach puts the focus on the end-user experience. We want that experience to align with the process, so users can easily adapt to the model. During this step, focus on:
This is probably the most important step in the model design process. Maybe it seems as though it is too early to think about the user experience, but ultimately, the information or data that the user needs to make a good business decision is what drives the entire structure of the model.
On some projects, you may be working with a project manager or a business consultant to flesh out the business process for the user. You may have user stories, or it may be that you are working on design a bit earlier in the process and the user stories haven’t been written. In any case, identify the user roles, the business process that will be completed in Anaplan, and create a high level design of the dashboards. Verify those dashboards with the users to ensure that you have the correct starting point for the next step.
Here are some questions to help you think through the definition of your output modules:
These are the modules that are needed to support the dashboards or export to another system. This is what should guide your design – all of the inputs and drivers added to the design are added with the purpose of providing these output modules with the information needed for the dashboards or export.
Typically, the data at the input stage requires some transformation. This is where business rules, logic, and/or formulas come into play:
You can whiteboard your schema, but at some point in your design process, your schema must be captured in an electronic format. It is one of the required pieces of documentation for the project and is also used during the Model Design Check-in, where a peer checks over your model and provides feedback.
It is required as part of The Anaplan Way process. You will build your model design skills by participating in a Model Design Check-in, which allows you to talk through the tougher parts of design with a peer.
But more importantly, designing your model using a schema means that you must think through all of the information you have about the current situation, how it all ties together and how you will get to that experience that meets the exact needs of the end-user without fuss or bother.
For more information, check out 351 Schemas. This 10 to 15 minute course provides basic information about creating a model schema.
When your schema is complete, give it a final check to ensure: