I had the honor of presenting at the September 2009 user group in the Hyperion track for those who attended the Ohio Valley Oracle Application User Group in Louisville.  The presentation focused on Maxl best practices, and how to integrate the results of maxl into other technologies.  The presentation was driven from a project completed late last year.  A recent client spent a tremendous amount of time verifying the results of daily and monthly processes.

Adding some consistency in the Maxl scripting, I integrated the results of the scripts, including the error and process logs, with .NET to produce a website that summarized the state of nearly 50 processes.  Administrators were able to view a web page that showed real time status of all their applications, including links to error logs.  The increased productivity of the administrative staff created a positive ROI in the first month of use.


Many people use Custom Lists in Excel – sometimes without even knowing.  If you have ever typed January into a cell and used autofill (click the dark plus sign, and drag across other cells) to create February through December, you have used Custom Lists.

Excel has a few Custom Lists setup for users when it is installed. Select the Tools / Options menu, and display the Custom Lists tab to view them.  Users can create their own Custom Lists in this dialog box by entering a list separated by commas or importing a range of cells that already includes a list.

For Essbase users who use the Hyperion Spreadsheet Add-In or SmartView, this can become a valuable tool.  Many times Essbase users will want to display a specific list of accounts, measures, products, etc.  Rather than selecting these from the member selection, or typing them, Custom Lists can be created and used to reduce the effort.

Let’s assume a user is responsible for a subset of the existing products and those products are only sold in a few of the markets.  The user may spend a lot of time creating the market list every time they create a new retrieve.  If the user creates a Custom List, they can automate this selection process.  A Custom List might include the following members.

Columbus,Cincinnati,Los Angeles,Tempe,Dallas,Austin,Seattle,Denver,Nashville

All the user has to do now is type Columbus in the first cell and use the autofill to list the rest of the markets.  This function can save those who frequently create add hoc reports a lot of time.

Custom Lists can be created for just about anything, are easy and quick to create, and are useful in a variety of situations.  www.In2Hyperion.com is not just for those in a technical capacity.  User related ideas, such as using Custom Lists, will become more prevalent on this site.  Sign up for our newsletter and receive notifications when more Excel tips for Essbase users become available.