Reports Help

Forecasting

SkyDesk Reports enables you to effectively predict your future data trends, using its forecasting feature. Forecasting in SkyDesk Reports is based on powerful forecasting algorithms which analyzes your past data deeply and comes up with the best forecast for the future. You can setup a forecast in a chart using a very simple setup process, without worrying about the underlying complexity.

This document will help you to learn on how forecasting works in SkyDesk Reports and how you can easily setup the same in your charts.

Forecasting

  1. How do I setup Forecasting in my chart?
  2. Forecast option is not available in my Chart settings, why?
  3. How Does Forecasting work in SkyDesk Reports?
  4. The forecasted points shown in the chart are different to the shared users. Why? 
  5. The underlying data and drill down options are not available for forecasted data points. Why?

Troubleshooting Tips

  1. I could not find "Forecast" option in chart settings. Why?
  2. Already configured forecasting settings are not available now. Why?
  3. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Forecasting is disabled as the data is completely ignored". Why?
  4. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Forecasting is disabled as there is not enough data to identify pattern". Why?
  5. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Forecasting is disabled as there are more than 40% empty values". Why?
  6. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Column cannot be forecast as more than 5 data points is required". Why?

 

1. How do I setup Forecasting in my chart?

Follow the below simple steps to setup Forecasting in your chart.

Configure the following:

  1. Open the Chart View in which you want to setup forecast.
  2. Navigate to Settings page by clicking Settings icon.
  3. Click on Forecast tab.
  4. Click Add Forecast, which will list all the possible Y-axis series to be forecasted.
  5. Select the Y-axis series to be forecasted.
    • Forecast Length - Number of points to be forecasted.
    • Ignore Last - Number of points to be ignored from the past starting from the current point.
    • Formatting - Formatting to be applied to show the forecasted data points.
    • Show ignored values - If checked, the chart will plot the data points ignored in "Ignore Last" setting.
  6. Click Apply.

After completing the above mentioned steps, the forecasted series will be added to the chart based on the configurations provided. The forecasted data series will also be available as a Legend Item in the chart to easily view / remove the forecasted points in the chart.

2. Forecast option is not available in my Chart settings, why?

Forecasting will be enabled when it matches certain conditions, which are briefed below:

  • The chart type should be any one of the following:
    Line Chart, Bar Chart, Stacked Bar Chart, Scatter Chart, Area Chart, Stacked Area Chart, Web Chart, Combo Charts.
  • The X-axis of the chart should be a TIME series or NUMBER series.
  • Charts should have only one dimension column in X-axis: Forecasting will be enabled only when the chart has a single dimension column (in X-axis). If the chart contains Text, Color, Size or Tooltip, then forecasting will not be enabled.
  • Atleast one aggregate function should be present in Y-axis: Forecasting can be applied over the aggregate function alone. if all the Y-axis series in the chart contain advanced summarizing options like running total, then forecasting will not be enabled.
  • If the chart is filtered with a numeric column, then forecasting will be disabled. The forecasting based on filtered data might give inaccurate results, hence forecasting is disabled.

3. How Forecasting works in SkyDesk Reports?

SkyDesk Reports offers a powerful forecasting engine which predicts future data points based on past data. The forecasting engine offers a range of customizations such as number of units to be forecasted, number of data points to be ignored in the past data and the formatting to be applied over the forecasted data points.

The following points describe how the forecasting engine works in SkyDesk Reports:

  1. The forecasting engine analyses past data points.
  2. Based on the past data, the forecasting engine will identify the periodicity using auto-correlation method.
  3. Then it computes the seasonality, trend and randomness using the past data.
  4. By iterative processing, the forecasting engine fine-tunes the computed seasonality, trend and randomness.
  5. The engine runs linear, logarithmic and exponential regressions and identifies the data series falls under linear, logarithmic or exponential.
  6. The accuracy of the predicted results will be verified using Hindcasting. Hindcasting is the process of predicting the past data points and verify the same with the actual points.
  7. Once all verifications are done, the forecasting engine produces the final forecasted points

4. The forecasted points shown in chart are different to the shared users. Why?

The chart could have been shared with different filter criteria to the shared users. Number of past data points available in the shared data could very for different shared users, hence the forecasted points are different for shared users.

5. The underlying data and drill down options are not available for forecasted data points. Why?

The forecasted points will not have underlying data generated for each of the forcasted data points. Hence, View Underlying Data and Drill Down options will not be available for forecasted data points.

Troubleshooting Tips

1. I could not find "Forecast" option in chart settings. Why?

This could happen when the forecast constraints are not met. Please refer to the constraints specified.

2. Already configured forecasting settings are not available now. Why?

This could happen when the design of the chart has been modified, which does not match the forecast constraints.

3. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Forecasting is disabled as the data is completely ignored". Why?

This could happen if you had set to ignore all the past data points from "Ignore Last" setting.

4. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Forecasting is disabled as there is not enough data to identify pattern". Why?

This could happen when there is no sufficient data produced to forecasting engine to come up with forecasted data points.

5. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Forecasting is disabled as there are more than 40% empty values". Why?

When the past data points provided to the forecasting engine has more null values, the forecasted points might be inaccurate. To avoid this, the forecasting engine will discard the process when the null values are more than 40% in the given data.

6. I have configured forecasting for my chart. But it says, "Column cannot be forecast as more than 5 data points is required". Why?

To produce an accurate forecast, the data points to be considered for forecasting should be more than 5 points. Try changing the time series in X-axis to a more granular function which may result in more data points. For example, If the existing time series is Year, then change to Month & Year.

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