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A characteristic is a classification group, such as company code, product, customer group, fiscal year, period, or region. It stipulates classification options for the dataset and can therefore be seen as a reference object for the key figures.

Special features of characteristics
  • Time characteristics are characteristics with a time reference, such as date, month, calendar month, fiscal year/period.

  • If a characteristic has attributes, texts or hierarchies, it is a master data-bearing characteristic.

    Master data is data that remains unchanged over a long period of time. Master data contains information that is always needed in the same way. References to this master data can be made in all InfoProviders.


    The company location is an example of an attribute for Customer. You use this to form customer groups for a specific region for example.

  • If a characteristic has one or more hierarchies, it is a hierarchy basic characteristic.

    A characteristic hierarchy is the representation of a characteristic's values in a tree structure. Like master data, characteristic hierarchies can be used in all InfoProviders.


    A hierarchy for characteristic "Cost Center" makes it possible to consolidate cost centers into cost center groups for example.