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Do you have a go to set of steps that guarantee TBM delight? Maybe a secret ingredient or a favorite report? It’s time to bring your home cooking to the big kitchen. Submit your recipe today!


Check out How to submit a recipe in the Insights Cookbook to ensure your entry is received.  I know, I know, you're wondering "are there any prizes for submitting a recipe?" - what fun would a cook off be without prizes?


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 Apptio socks!! 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
  • Upload Benchmarking
  • Map Cost Pools
  • Map Towers
  • Map Sub-towers
  • 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


Length: 65 minutes


Format: Self-paced 


Prerequisites: None

Recognition Title: Upon completion of the IT Benchmarking courses and assessment, you will be awarded the IT Benchmarking badge. 


Special thanks to Julianne Maila, Venky Krishnan, and Michael Epstein who served as subject matter experts and guest instructors for this series.  


Want to empower your Business Unit leaders to track consumption and see their impact on bottom-line costs?


Configuring and Using CT Business Unit Reports is an introduction to the reports included in the component and a couple of the nuances of configuration.


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


Format: Self-Paced



  • Reporting analysts with permission to create reports
  • TBMAs


 Related pages:

Install and configure the CT - Business Units component 

Business Units Module configuration 

Hi Folks,

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 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".   


I hope this helps!



Hi TBM Heroes,

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. 



Michelle McGuire - was it you who asked me about this? 

Rhonda Keller and Debbie Hagen join us to discuss the ETBMA Case Study. Curious about the following? Then take a few minutes to listen to their insights.

  • What happens when a case study is submitted?
  • What are the review standards for a case study submission?
  • Why do some case studies stand out to the review board?
  • Are there any tips or tricks that will help me create an outstanding case study?


ETBMA 2018 Case Study 

ETBMA Case Study Grading Rubric 

  •      Are you curious how calculations work in Apptio? 
  •      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

Understanding Error Text - Link Only


Data Upload Interface - Link Only


Allocations Summary - Tracking Unallocated Values

Unallocated Report 


Filtering Data in a Column - 1 vs 100 vs 100%

[Closed - Enablement] Increase usability of column filters for numeric values 

*this content was updated on May 4, 2018 to fit with the recently updated backpack courses*

I am writing this post mainly for CT beginners that are working on building a cost transparency foundation project 1st backpack course in Apptio University.  However, the concept and the formulas are the same in R11.


Understanding the Default Allocations in Apptio's Cost Transparency Application

In many, if not all cases, you will want to create your own allocations in your models but when you don't, you'll need to understand Cost Transparency's default or “out of the box” allocations.  


The default CT allocations are based on a Data Relationship.  This means when there are matching values in each column (on the sending object side and the receiving object side), the data tables can share information and dollars can flow.  If there are not matching values, the dollars will not flow.


If you look at those columns in the master data tables (look in the Formulas step) you will see a formula. We need to make sure that the formulas are generating equal values or else our dollars will not flow.  


Below is a table that shows the formula that is in the default allocation for getting dollars to flow from the Cost Source object to the Labor object.  See the formula and then examples of what it generates for 2 different GL line items.


LABOR MASTER DATA.Cost Source_Labor Key

Cost Source Master- Is Labor?

Cost Source Dollar



Flow from Cost Source to Labor Object?

=if(upper(Is Labor)="YES","Labor_Key"&&Cost Center&&Cost Pool&&Cost Sub Pool&&Labor Key Metafield,"CS_Labor_null")

="Labor_Key"&&Cost Center&&Cost Pool&&Cost Sub Pool&&Cost Source Key Metafield




Labor_Key – CC1565254222 – Internal Labor – Internal Labor –

Labor_Key – CC1565254222 – Internal Labor – Internal Labor -










This is especially important information to know when troubleshooting issues in your model.


Can you change those default allocations?  Absolutely!  And as mentioned above in many or most case you will want to do that based on your company data.  You get a chance to do this in the 1st backpack too.  So be sure to watch the Allocations video in the Videos and Documentation section of your backpack.  

Happy Learning! :-)



Have you started the Understanding the TBM Framework course? In addition to the course you will have the opportunity to complete a Community Quest! The first challenge in the quest is available now


You will have the opportunity to earn Community points, three Community Badges, and eventually learn how to earn your very own TBM Framework Dude! 


Check out the TBM Framework quest page to begin!






Understanding the TBM Framework is a new self-paced course from Apptio U! This course was inspired by the Learning the TBM Framework (the Easy Way) blog by ETBMA Jairus Green in which he introduced his TBM Framework Dude. Jairus was inspired to create the TBM Framework Dude to give him a conceptual overview of the TBM Framework when explaining it to others. Remember we told you there was more to come? Well…here is the "more!" This course is designed for new or experienced TBMAs looking to refresh their knowledge of one of the many TBM Tools, the TBM Framework.

In this course you will learn how:

• the TBM Framework aligns with other TBM Tools.
• the IT organization utilizes the TBM Framework to enhance the entire business.
• the organizational elements are implemented to improve the way IT provides value to the business.
• the core disciplines are incorporated to anticipate future changes and align with strategic business goals.
• the IT organization uses value conversations to focus on overcoming various trade-offs with the goal of better business outcomes. 


Now on to the #TBMFrameworkChallenge! In addition to completing the course you will have the opportunity to complete three Community Challenges! The challenges will be released quarterly. You will have the opportunity to earn Community points, up to three Community Badges, and eventually learn how to earn your very own TBM Framework Dude! The points you earn will count toward your Community Engagement points required for your Recognized and Elite TBMA Certification. The first Challenge will be released June 2018!

Length: 40 minutes (not including time to complete challenges)
Format: Self-paced
Audience: Community Users


Special thanks to Debbie Hagen and Jonathan Strauss who served as subject matter experts for this series.  

Everyone!  The Superhero's have been sent off and those of you who are getting one will receive it shortly!  Please post a pic when they arrive Jillian Ferguson Ben Burkett Matthew Rosenbluth Martyn Dawes Keith Edwards David Battaglia Juliet Orgain Gordana Moore Peggy Cantu Juan José Jarillo Trae Baker

First, a little about Apps and Services...


The Applications and Services Module is used to allocate the IT Resource Towers costs into the associated infrastructure and ultimately into the Applications and Services table. The resulting reports can be used to gain insights into the Application and Service Portfolio spend.


Apptio provides visibility into not only the total cost of an application or service but the underlying drivers of that cost; this visibility enables identifying outliers and drilling into the details of application cost.  Insights gained through spend analysis highlight problem areas and improvement opportunities, for which targeted corrective actions can be evaluated, for example:

  • Adjusting service levels to reduce costs of an app or service
  • Improving ROA and avoiding/delaying capital spend by eliminating or re-purposing underutilized assets
  • Right-sizing HW and SW configurations based on cost and performance requirements
  • Evaluating different sourcing options (e.g., on-prem vs. cloud)
  • Directing resources to highest priority applications
  • Delaying planned investments not critical to business

Application costs are calculated on an-going basis, ensuring that TCO figures are up-to-date and reflect current costs and conditions.


That's pretty heady stuff. Before you can do all of that you will need to configure the Apptio model. 


In this course, you upload the necessary data for apps and services, configure your data, map data to master data sets and configure your allocations. The work stream you follow is the recommended step-by-step process that you should implement during a real world Apps and Services configuration. The purpose of this course is to provide you with  hands-on experience so you can contribute, as a customer, partner or Apptio employee, to the varying twists and turns of an actual Apps and Services project.  


Begin the course here:

Partners and Apptio employees (Required):  Employee and Partner: Request Training Environment for "Configuring Cost Transparency Apps and Services in R12".

This course is REQUIRED. Complete this course in the two week time period you have been allotted. You have the base project, "CT Apps and Services Base Project" in your training environment so you may begin at any time.


Apptio Customers (Optional): Customer Request Training Environment for "Configuring Cost Transparency Apps and services in R12"

This course is OPTIONAL. If you wish, you may complete this course in the two week time assigned OR you may come back at anytime in the future. Complete the survey HERE to request a new training environment when you are ready. The base project, "CT Apps and Services Base Project" will then become available to you. 


Length: Varies - estimated between 2 to 4 hours


Format: Backpack - a self-paced class that includes all the resources you need to effectively manage your data in Apptio


Audience: TBMAs


Prerequisites: Configuring and Installing Cost Transparency Foundation R12


Deconstructing a Report in R12 is now available! Jonathan Strauss, Customer Success Adviser, demonstrates a process by which TBMAs can answer the business stakeholder question, "From where does this report value come?" Beginning with the report, Jon shows how to work backwards towards the data, model and allocation strategies to contextualize the origin of numbers that appear on a report. 


In this course, Jonathan will:

  • Explain how to deconstruct a report to determine exactly where the numbers are coming from
  • Show you how to work backwards from the report to identify which data/models/allocations are building it's content
  • Increase your confidence in answering questions about reports in an accurate and defensible way
  • Enable you to build/strengthen stakeholder and end user buy-in and confidence


You will also learn several tips and tricks that will enhance your daily use of Apptio.


THIS RECORDING IS AVAILABLE IN APPTIO U!  Click  HERE to access the recorded session.


Length: 1 hour

Format: Self-paced  

Audience: RTBMA Candidates


Cost Transparency Foundation is one of Apptio's most popular products for a reason - it's a powerful application that allows businesses to identify and communicate true IT spend and value. Though it certainly can seem like a complicated thing to learn, we got you covered. 


In this new course we ease you into the application with multimedia learning materials, clear & guided instructions in building your first project, and instructor help along the way. 


Installing and Configuring Cost Transparency Foundation R12 - formerly known as Data Management R12 - contains all the newest instructional videos, supplemental materials, instructor help through Lab Assists, but most importantly - a new, easy to follow, step by step guide that walks you through the whole process from opening the application for the first time to completing your first allocations up to the IT Resource Towers infrastructure layer. All in about 10 hours of your time. 


The Installing and Configuring Cost Transparency Foundation R12 course is laid out in an easy to view format, which makes navigating the course a simple task.

Already an experienced R12 user and just want to review some of the material? Easy.

Completely new to CT and having to go back to watch a video while working on your project? No problem.


View the course here: Installing and Configuring Cost Transparency Foundation R12


Length: Viewing the instructional materials and completing the hands on activity takes about 10 hours. 


Format: What we call a backpack - a self-paced course with instructional materials, student guide for completing an introductory project in Cost Transparency, and many more additional resources to help along the way. 


Audience: TBMAs


Prerequisites:  Introduction to Cost Transparency R12 course

26April_TBM-Talk-Icon.pngEpisode 8: Adding Calculated Columns to Reports

(Counting Your Mangoes)


In this episode Michael Moulsdale, helps you perfect your daily mango counting  by adding calculated columns to an Apptio report component. Along the way you'll learn: 


  • How to start creating formulas in a report table
  • How to perform calculations in a table
  • How to convert a calculated column into a perspective
  • How to customize your perspectives
  • Performance considerations when creating calculated coumns


ETBMAs may find this discussion helpful while preparing to take the 2018 Advanced Scenario Hands-on Exam (R12). 


Play TBM Talk Episode 8 

Music by


Length: 13 minutes


Format: Audio and video Podcast


Audience: ETBMAs


Prerequisites: None