How great would this logo look next to your name?!!!!
Maybe it was the beginning of the year, maybe you just started your TBM Journey, but I'll bet many of you set out to earn your RTBMA before the end of this year. Well, if you haven't finished the courses yet, there is still plenty of time to get your name on the TBMA Wall of Fame - RTBMA18 Don't wait until the last minute.
Think what a great achievement that would be to add to your 2018 performance review! Plus you'll be able to add the logo to your TBM Connect and Linkedin profiles. And that's just the fame part of it...by completing the RTBMA requirements you'll be learning so much about how to manage your Apptio solutions!
Here is some advice I've given my students or seen them give to others once they've earned their RTBMA!
For those of you who have finished the courses but are test shy:
Review the self-paced courses, if it's been a while since you've taken them. There are some questions around TBM, Hallmarks of Success, etc.
***(new item)***We've added the Sample Exam as an optional part of your Learning Plan
Just give it a try. No one but you will know if you don't pass on the first try and you'll know what to study for so you can take it again. And who knows, you just might pass on the first try!
It's about 50 multiple choice questions, you won't have to write formulas or troubleshoot. We're not trying to trick you. If you've paid attention in class and done the class work, you should be able to pass this exam.
You'll have 2 hours to answer all the questions. I recommend going through and answering them all quickly, flagging the ones you aren't sure of for follow up.
For those of you who need to complete your 1500 points requirements on Apptio Community:
You get 500 points just for completing the required courses in your RTBMA Learning Plan - how simple is that?
If you don't see your class on the schedule, email email@example.com to let us know what classes you are missing and let us know your timezone. We will do our best to get these courses on the schedule to help you complete the necessary courses for your RTBMA.
I've come across another topic that I get asked about sometimes in class, lab assist or on AAI that I thought I'd try to clarify for the Apptio Community. It's related to allocation rules and that option in the From part of your allocation screen.
"Send only remaining values" (after other rules run).
I've noticed some of you using it when trying to complete your Cost Source to Vendor or Cost Source to OCP allocations with unsatisfactory results and I wanted to clarify what it does and when you might use it. Before writing this I synced up with one of my super smart people Mark Nealey and he helped me explain it in simple terms. He can add on or clarify if needed.
First, what the "Send only remaining values (after other values run) does, it says, take whatever is left after ALL of my other rules are applied and send those up. It's the leftover costs that I don't necessarily know how to account for.
Here's how Mark explained it to me:
Let's say I owe people 30 dollars. I know I owe Rhonda Keller $10 and I know I owe Julie Batty $10 but I don't remember who the last $10 goes to. I would use the "send only remaining values" option to just divide it up into small pieces and give it to everyone else on the planet (or at least on TBM Connect ).
The benefit is that I have a fully allocated model, with no fallout.
However, I do want to caution you from applying this option just to get a clean model. Many people view fallout as a bad thing (which it is, in a way), but what it really is, is the opportunity to understand why those costs are falling out, and work on improving our data or our allocations so we can understand and correct where that cost should actually go.
One other caution I'd offer is that you want to be careful what other allocations you apply when you apply this rule. For example, if you create 2 outbound allocations, and set them both to "send only remaining rules (after other rules run)" you'll create a deadlock. This is because it can't run line 1, until line 2 runs and it can't run line 2 until line 1 runs. Therefore it's deadlocked and can't process either allocation.
Finally, don't interpret this blogpost to mean that you shouldn't use this option. It has it's benefits as long as you understand what it's doing with those leftover costs. We just want to caution you that we shouldn't use it just to make your model tie out top to bottom/left to right. Here are two related articles I found useful on this topic. If you've read/posted other related articles or have feedback, feel free to comment.
I've gotten this request a couple times recently on Apptio Community and since not everyone has an AAEP to watch Jonathan's Spark video, I decided to write up an abbreviated version of how to do this. For those of you have have current AAEPs you can view Jonathan's video by logging into ApptioU and searching on Binary Filter.
If you don't already have the binary (Yes/No) column, you'll need to insert a formula column to create it. Usually you use some kind of If statement to test your values and return Yes or No. If you already have a Yes/No Column you can skip to Part 2.
To make setup easy, I've created a simple report that displays Cost and Budget by Account number.
In our scenario let's say the business wants to only display values where there is negative variance. To accomplish this, we'll first have to calculate variance (of course we do have a variance metric but I'm going to create a custom column for demonstration purposes). Go to the Data Tab while in your report and Insert a Formula Column.
Variance is just Budget-Cost. Set the format to Currency and click Create.
Now we only want to show the rows where the Calculated Variance is a negative number. We can do that with a manual filter, but we don't want our users to have to filter every time... so we'll create another formula column to test for negative variance.
This results in a new column with Yes and No values
Now again, we want to show only the ones with a negative variance, which in our table would be the "Yes" values. So we right click on the Neg Variance column and add it to the Filters
Now that it's in the filters column, we can edit the filter to say what we want to display. All I have to do is right-click and Add it to Filters.
Once it's in the filters I can right-click to edit the filter
I'll need to set up a custom filter that matches the value I want to display (Yes). Remember Apptio is case sensitive so the value you type in for the filter name, has to match the case and spelling of the value you're trying to filter for.
Deselect everything but Yes and click OK
Now our report only shows those accounts with a negative variance (where Neg Variance column =Yes).
Let's do a little final cleanup. We don't really need our users to see the Neg Variance column... so we can go back to where it exists in the Values area, right click and hide the column.
You've heard about the TBM Taxonomy. You're even familiar with its layers. But do you get "bogged down" in the multitude of terms, definitions, and their place within the taxonomy? If you answered yes to this question, we have a solution for you--TBM Taxonomy Flashcards! This tool allows you to quiz yourself on TBM Taxonomy terms and definitions, while giving you a visual representation of where the terms belong within the layers of the taxonomy. So follow the link, and get to flipping! TBM Taxonomy Flashcards
One question I'm often asked in Lab Assists and on Ask an Instructor is "why don't my numbers in Servers and Hypervisors match the guide or the answer key? What did I do wrong?
Well the short answer is you may not have done anything wrong. It's typcially related to slightly different allocation strategies since we're not giving you all the answers and are expecting you to figure some things our for yourself as you get farther along in your training. But the question comes up enough that I want to explain why it happens using an example from the CT Apps and Services project.
Let's say you configure your allocations from Physical Servers to Hypervisors and Servers as follows:
Some of you may get a result that looks like this:
While some of you may get different numbers.
So why does this happen, especially since in both cases the allocations from Physical Servers to Servers and to Hypervisors are identical? Well it turns out, that the reason is back a couple steps in our project with the allocation from Data Centers to Physical Servers. You may think "but I've got the right number in physical servers" and you're right, but sometimes its about the distribution of those dollars.
To explain this, let's take a look at the allocation from Data Centers to Physical Servers that we did earlier in the project. Let's say you allocate from Data Centers to Physical Servers using Location as your data relationship column... but you don't select any weighting value. Apptio spreads the dollars from the Data Center line items to the respective Physical Server Line items evenly. In the screenshot, I've filtered by Raleigh so you can see that every server in Raleigh gets the same $ amount.
Now let's change the allocation slightly. I'll add a weighting factor to my allocation based on the CPU Cores and once again filter for Raleigh. Notice how when it's weighted by CPU cores, the higher the number in the CPU Core column the more dollars are allocated. Lower CPU Core numbers result in lower allocations.
The point is, regardless of which allocation strategy I use, I get the same number going from Data Centers to Physical Servers:
The difference is in the spread, and that comes out later when we allocate from Physical Servers to Servers and Hypervisors. Because the $ allocated to each Physical Server line item are different in the different allocation strategies, the amount to send from specific line items in Physical Servers to Hypervisors or Servers are different, which changes the amounts in those subsequent allocations.
We can compare a specific line item. Below is the project where I have a CPU Core Weighting in my DC to Phys Serv allocation. I've filtered for HV1000272. Notice that in my Cost column for that line item in the Source data, I have $7352 to allocate.l
Now, if you look at the same line item in the project where I've not used the CPU Core Weighting and just let the dollars be spread evenly we get different results. Notice that we only have $2408 available to allocate from the HV100272 line item in Physical Server Master data to the relevant Hypervisor line item. Of course this is going to change our results.
The point is, different companies use different allocation strategies based on what is important to them. Spreading the dollars evenly, without a weighting is a perfectly valid allocation strategy although not quite as accurate and defensible as one that is based on an attribute of the data or on consumption. Note: If you're trying to fix your project to match the guide, you can do so by adding the CPU Cores weighting to the Data Center to Physical Server allocation.
I hope this lesson on how the weighting factors can change your results has been helpful. Let me know what you think!
As a part of the RTBMA Learning Plan, the Introduction to Apptiocourse will showcase Apptio’s suite of SaaS applications for automating TBM and how Apptio empowers common roles in IT. In addition, the course covers how you can maximize your success by adopting TBM processes, and how you can connect with other practitioners.
With Apptio’s TBM applications built around ATUM, you can connect your data to pre-defined and useful reports that facilitate better and faster decision-making capabilities for your IT, Finance and Business Units.
Taking this self-paced class will prepare you for the courses that follow in the RTBMA Apptio UniversityLearning Plans.
As always, Education Services is happy to provide you with best practices and communications to help you through your TBM journey. This Apptio User Rollout Training Plan developed by Jacinta Fraser at CBA highlights key milestones and opportunities to gain insight through training sessions, email communications, user guides, and more. The PowerPoint graphic is downloadable and completely customizable to suit your organization’s timeline.
If you are one of the first 20 approved entries your recipe will be showcased in the Insights Cookbook AND you will receive a pair of Apptiosocks!! Who doesn't like prizes and Apptio swag?! I've had many requests for these socks so get your pair before they are gone! (Please note, 1 pair of socks per person. We would love for you to submit more than one recipe but you will only receive a pair of socks for your first approved recipe.)
The Apptio socks are the prize for customers. Apptio employees and Partners please check the internal Info Hub for the internal prize..coming soon.
Apptio University is pleased to announce the release of the IT Benchmarking Learning Plan. These courses will allow you to dive deeper into configuring and using IT Benchmarking to compare, investigate, and track actuals against benchmarks. In these self-paced courses you will explore:
How to Configure Interactive Benchmarking:
Auto Upload Actuals from Cost Transparency
Manually Input or Override Actuals
Overview of non-US Currencies
Using non-US Currencies
How to Configure Benchmarking in Cost Transparency:
Download Benchmarks from Interactive Benchmarking
Map Cost Pools
Map Units of Measure
How to Use IT Benchmarking:
To Compare Industry Benchmarks
To Compare IT OpEx Benchmarks
To Compare Infrastructure Benchmarks
To Investigate Infrastructure Benchmarks
To Track Progress Against Infrastructure Benchmarks
Recognition Title:Upon completion of the IT Benchmarking courses and assessment, you will be awarded the IT Benchmarking badge.
The Cost Transparency Business Units component gives Business Unit leaders the insights they need to make proactive assessments. You’ll see reports that reveal detailed spend information for each Business Unit, including the ability to drill down to view the unit’s application and project spend. You can also see Business Unit spend by category, and what the BU is spending on each application and service it consumes.
Get to know the CT Business Units component – another way to maximize the value you get from Apptio.
Length: 5 minutes
Reporting analysts with permission to create reports
I've recently had a couple questions from folks about the best way to submit a feature request that you'd like to see in the product. So I thought rather than answer it several times, I'd write a blog post. Before I start I want to set expectations that I can't promise if or when your request will get added, but the first step is to get it into the request list so that engineering can look at it to see if it's feasible and beneficial to many people.
The first step should be to go to the Product Central page for the product for which you have the idea. For some of the products, such as ITPF, there is an area where you can submit feature requests and review current requests under consideration. Scroll down the project page to find it.
However not all products, CT for example, have a feature request area on Community. To submit a feature request for CT, you would log in to Support.apptio.com and click the "Have an Idea" option.
Next click the "Have and Idea for Other Apptio Products - Submit an Idea" option.
Just fill in the blanks and you're done. Be as specific as possible in your description. Specify the product in the drop down and your description should include the scenario where you'd want the new feature to be available or happen and it should also include a "How will I know when it's working/done".
This question came up in class quite some time ago and I can't remember now who asked it. Anyway, it took me a while to find someone who knew the answer but I finally tracked it down. I tried to find the asker in my notes and email but was unsuccessful. Hopefully though you are following me and will see that I didn't give up on getting you an answer.
The question was related to an unusual menu option in one of the OOTB reports. This Tabbed table is in the OOTB Application Review report. About halfway down the page. Notice that rather than Size and Position, the right click menu shows an option to "Change Size" . A student in class was curious about where that option came from and why it doesn't exist in other places.
So it turns out that it's related to the group settings, The tab with the unusual menu item is nested inside a larger grouping component and that grouping component is set to use dynamic layout. When you have nested components inside a group that used dynamic layout, you won't get the option to specify the position of the item in the group, so it changes the menu to only offer a sizing option.
If you drag the tab component outside the group (not the easiest task since there are a lot of layers in this report) you can see that once it's outside the group the tab component once again has the Size and Position option. It's no longer controlled by the rules of the group.
Are you wondering how you can manage your checkins and checkouts as a team?
Do you know the best way to organize your data sets when loading them into Apptio?
If you have these questions and others, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve collected the most common requests we get for “I really wish someone would explain how this works…”. Ryan Oliver has generously provided explanations for those things TBMAs want to understand while using our software.
Copy Forward, Data Freshness and Data Versioning (3 mins.)
Data Set Organization (6 mins.)
Review Project Error Notifications (11 mins.)
"Various": What Should I Do? (5 mins.)
What is Happening During Calculations? (11 mins.)
Working as a Team in Apptio: Check-in & Check-out and Coordinating Who Owns What