Narrative Reporting: How to Create a Report Package

By: Kevin White - Finacial Analyst
Published: February 24, 2021

In this tutorial we will be going over how to create a report package in Narrative Reporting. After you do all the work of executing, transforming, and loading your data into the proper environment in EPM and creating your fancy financial reports to hopefully impress the boss or a new client, you are now finally ready to create the report package. Phew, you’re on the home stretch! Now comes the fun part; how to eloquently tie your reports and documents together into one seamless presentation package.

The first step will be to go into the Narrative Reporting environment within EPM, go to Navigator and select “Report Packages”. From there, you’ll want to create a new Report Package and give it a name. Once you create your Report Package, you will find yourself with four tabs on the left-hand side. Go into the Report Center and make sure to upload your financial report(s) as “doclets”.

First part, not so bad. Next part? Good luck. You will want to click on the “Variables” tab on the left side and create two Static Variables. One variable will be the current month or quarter (depending on your client’s request), and the other the current year. These variables will ultimately let your boss or client change their Point of View within the report package so they can look at different data, such as the Income Statement from March 2019 or the Balance Sheet from September 2020. Once those are set you will need to utilize Smart View and Narrative Reporting within Excel to manually create some data tables, customize a bunch of formulas, create reference variables, and ultimately tie together all your data between Excel, your cover page, any data tables you decide to add and the financial reports. From there, you will proceed to upload your Excel and Word documents as doclets in the Report Center, similar to how you uploaded them previously.

Once that’s done, you can click on the Preview tab and check out all the errors and mistakes you made since this is your first time creating a Report Package! Now is the time to gear up to get frustrated as you go back and forth between your report package, Smart View and Word to figure out how to fix tedious errors, manipulate those famous Excel Formulas and ultimately want to throw your mouse at the screen. Although I advise throwing something other than your mouse because then you will have to use your touch pad and no one, I mean literally no one, wants to have to use their touch pad. Have fun!


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