Skip to main content


Workday Adaptive Planning KB

Account Type Setting: Cumulative or Periodic

Introduces administrators to the Type  setting for general ledger, custom, assumption, modeled, and cube accounts.  Learn how choosing periodic or cumulative changes the way your team views and enters data in sheets.

Audience: Administrators who manage the model.

As an administrator, you need to understand and define the account Type setting. Every account in Adaptive Insights, except metric accounts, has a type, although it isn't always editable. What type you choose depends on the kind of data you're tracking. You find this setting in the Account Details:

  • Periodic: The value is the net for the period.
  • Cumulative: The value is the running balance. 

Account Type setting

For general ledger accounts, the account Type setting includes the type and family of accounts. In the following image, Current Assets is the account family and the account is cumulative.

GL Account Type Setting

The account Type setting changes:

  • The time rollup options available.
  • How your team enters data for the account in sheets.
  • How data displays in sheets.

There are account Type settings that are conditionally available. These settings change how the account gets its data values. When you choose these settings, the account remains either periodic or cumulative.

  • Link: The values of the account come from a modeled or cube account. See Linked Accounts Overview.
  • Spread: The value from another account spreads through a time period in this account. This option is available for calculated accounts in modeled sheets only. This is typically used for revenue recognition and asset depreciation. See Account Spreads.

See Accounts Overview if you're new to accounts, Change the Account Type Setting for instructions on how to change the account type setting, and Account Fields and Settings for descriptions of all the account settings.

Time Rollups and Account Type

Time rollups represent the values of an account over a period of time. For example, the quarter rollup represents the values of all the months in the quarter. The year rollup represents the values of the months in the year. Your time rollups are based on your Adaptive Insights calendar setup, most commonly Months, Quarters, and Years, but could also include weeks and semi-years.

The rollup method is an account setting that determines how the account displays the values for time rollups.


There are four rollup options: 

  • Sum of rolled up values (periodic only)
  • Value in last time period (cumulative only)
  • Average of rolled up values 
  • Weighted average of rolled up values

General ledger accounts don't have time rollup options. For general ledger accounts, periodic types always use the Sum of rolled up values, and cumulative types always use the Value in last time period.

Data in Periodic Accounts on Sheets

For periodic accounts, the value in any given time period equals the net activity for that period.  Revenue is an example of periodic data.

In the sheet:

  • Your team enters values for each period.
  • The values between periods are unrelated.
  • The Q1 time rollup sums the values for the quarter. The Sum of rolled up values is a time rollup method only available for periodic accounts.

For custom, cube standard, and cube or modeled calculated accounts, you can choose any of the other time rollup methods except Value in last time period.

Accounts That Are Always Periodic 

Data in Cumulative  Accounts on Sheets

Cumulative accounts maintain a running balance. The value displayed in each cell is current as of the end of the time period. For example, Petty Cash accumulates over time, either increasing or decreasing from the prior period. 

In the sheet: 

  • For value displayed per period is the the previous period's value plus any increase or minus a decrease. 
  • The time rollup is the value of the last period because the values in cumulative accounts are already summing as they go. The Value in the last period is a time rollup method only available for cumulative accounts.

For custom, cube standard, and cube or modeled calculated accounts, you can choose any of the other time rollup methods except Sums the rolled up values

Accounts That Are Always Cumulative

Initial balance accounts on modeled sheets and some general ledger accounts. See Built-in General Ledger Accounts.

Planned by and Actuals by

There are two additional settings when you choose cumulative: Planned by and Actuals by. These settings affect the way your team enters the data in sheets for each version type (actuals or plan). The options for each are Delta or Balance.

Plan by and Actuals by settings

You might choose to have your cumulative accounts "planned by delta." When you plan by delta, your team can enter the difference per time period and let the sheet calculate the accumulation.  At the same time, you might choose to have your "actuals by balance," so that your team can easily upload the data from a source that shows the balance for each period. 

Cumulative by Balance on Sheets

When you choose balance, the experience is similar to periodic accounts for your team. Your team enters the running balance in the cell or in the formula bar. In the following example sheet, your team enters 500 for January, 600 for February, and 525 for March. Notice how the months following Q1 are blank. The accumulated value has not been entered yet. 

cumulative by balance.png

Cumulative by Delta on Sheets

When you choose delta, your team can enter data in two different ways: by delta in the formula bar, or by balance in the cell. Regardless of how they enter the data, the cell displays the running balance. Your team can tell when an account is a cumulative account by delta when you see:

  • Future time periods prefill with the running balance.
  • Previous Plus by the formula bar.

When your team enters data in the formula bar, they're entering the delta, or the change from the previous balance. So, entering 100 for May adds 100 to the value displayed in April.

When they press enter:

  • The sheet calculates the new balance in the cell, which is 600.
  • The accumulated value persists into following periods until your team enters another delta. 
  • Once they save the sheet, they'll see the delta in the formula bar.

cumulative account by delta.png

When your team enters values directly in the cell, they're entering the balance, even in a "by delta" account. So entering 700 in May at first appears to be adding 700 to the previous balance. Once you press enter, the sheet updates to show that you added 100: 

cumulative by delta entering the balance.png

  • Was this article helpful?