Extensible Documents Power Point

Automating Power Points and Reporting through Extensible Documents

Anyone who has updated a Power Point deck before knows the frustration of updating numbers, double checking there are no typos, taking screenshots and sizing them to fit the slide. When you delegate this task to someone else it seems like something is always wrong. So, let me ask you a question. Why do this manually when OneStream can do it for you?

Extensible Documents allow you to export OneStream content into Microsoft Office files. This example walks through a Power Point, but Extensible Documents can be utilized in Word and Excel as well.

Getting Started:

To get started you will need to create a Power Point deck. Set up how you topically would, you probably have one created already you can use as a starting point. You will need to save this document with the following extension .xfdoc.pptx This lets OneStream know that this is an Extensible Power Point and that it needs to look for extensible references.

For Word and Excel you need to use xfdoc.docx and xfdoc.xlsx, respectively.

Anywhere you have a reference to a date, balance, entity, account, or any other type of metadata or data we will add a reference. To do this we can use Substitution Variables and Parameters that exist in OneStream.

Anywhere you want to pull in an existing Cube View or Chart you will need to paste an image on that tab (this can literally be anything, it will not show up in your final deck) and size it to take up the amount of the slide you want your item to take up. This may take some fine tuning to get perfect. To add a path to an item we will right click the image and select “View Alt Text”, this will open a panel on the right with a box that we can enter text into which will call the appropriate objects.

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Substitution Variables and Parameters:

Substitution Variables and Parameters can be accessed from any items within the Presentation group in your Application by clicking the Object Lookup Button (the glasses).

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OneStream has a few hundred Substitution Variables out of the box to select from. Anywhere you have text you want to update you can add a reference to one of these. A Substitution Variable is called with Pipes: | | while a Parameter is called using Pies and Exclamation Points: |! !|

In my Power Point example, I used |WFTime| as I planned to attach to a Dashboard on the Worfklows. I also used a Parameter I built to allow the user to select the Entity they will run their Power Point deck for.


Anywhere you want to pull in a balance you can use an XFCell Reference. A basic example would be XFCell(E#US:A#Sales); you can use Parameters and Substitution Variables in these as well, and can reference as many dimensions as you need. You can also format numbers and scale within this string. For a full list of options, you can access the Extensible Documents Settings list from the Object Viewer. You can also pull in member properties if desired.

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I have data pulling into a summary slide as well as a chart showing detail by account. If you make these references dynamic you will only need to set up your Power Point one time and will be able to run each month.

See my examples below:


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Cube View/Chart Reports:

Any tab you want a Cube View or Chart you will need to paste an image on. Once you do this you will navigate to the Alt Text as explained above.

The following strings will be pasted into the Alt Text box for a Cube View and a Chart:

Cube View: {XF}{Application}{CubeViewReport}{CubeViewName}

Chart: {XF}{Application}{ChartReport}{ChartComponentName}

You will only update the last set of brackets with your Cube View or Chart Component name, the rest remains as is.

Upload your Report:

Once you are happy with your set up you will need to upload your Power Point deck to OneStream using the file explorer. Once this has been done you can double click on your document and it will export with everything updated. You may be prompted for a Parameter if you have any in your deck.

The Before and After:

This is what my Power Point deck looked like before I uploaded it into OneStream:

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I have attached my Power Point deck to a Dashboard by connecting it to a button. You don’t have to do this step, you can just run from the File Explorer pane anywhere in the application.

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Now, with a single click my slide deck above turns into this. A deck populated with dates, balances, Cube Views, and Charts.

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Use Cases:

When I think of use cases for this it exceeds a month end review deck. You could use this to export a set of charts/graphs for multiple business units in one deck or allow Business Unit owners to select their Business Unit or entity from a drop down and get a customized package of details relevant to their business with one click. They no longer need to run reports from multiple sources.

As with most things in OneStream the customization options only end with your imagination.


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