Define Financial Report Columns - Field Descriptions

Use the table below for reference when completing the fields on this screen.



Report ID

Enter the ID of the report for which column information is being defined.


Column #

Column numbers are assigned and maintained by the software.

Start column position

Enter the number that represents the column in which the first character will display. The system defaults the first column to position one, and subsequent columns to a number that represents the ending position of the previous column plus two spaces. Press Enter to accept the default, or enter a new number that is greater than the ending position of the previous column.

The system allows the use of phantom columns containing calculation or numbers which may be referred to for use in calculations in other columns, but which do not print on the report. Phantom columns are indicated by entering zero as the column position. When this is done, the length and display code fields are skipped.

Important: Be careful not to overlap columns. For example, if Column 1 starts at position 20, and has a length of 10, then Column 2 cannot start before position 30. There is one exception, however: numeric columns may overlap if all parameters for overlapping columns are identical (except level numbers, which must be different).


Enter the maximum number of characters that may print in this column.

Column type

Select the code representing the type of information to be displayed in the column.

  • A - Account number from the General Ledger Chart of Accounts

  • N - Numeric information

  • F - Formula calculation results

  • FD - Full description from the account code description in the Chart of Accounts (30 characters)

  • AD - Abbreviated description from the account code description in the Chart of Accounts (18 characters)

Column types A, AD, and FD print for detail type rows only - refer to row types discussed in Define Financial Report Rows. If Numeric was entered in the type field, entry is allowed in the next six fields. If any other type of column is being defined, the cursor moves to the description/formula field and the next six fields are skipped.

Period type

Select the code for the type of accounting period information that will print in the column.

  • P - Period information

  • Y - Year-to-date information

  • Q - Quarter-to-date information

  • Q1 - First quarter information

  • Q2 - Second quarter information

  • Q3 - Third quarter information

  • Q4 - Fourth quarter information


Enter the code of the year from which the information is to be pulled: Current year, Last year, or Next year.

Offset periods

This field and the next work in conjunction with the Year field to print the correct information in the column. For example, assume this column is to contain information from last year and the current period is period 4. The system needs to know from which period to pull the information to place in the report. If this column is to contain information from period 4, leave the field blank by pressing Enter. By pressing Enter, Spectrum takes the information from the same period as the current period, but the information is to come from the previous year.

To indicate to the software that information is needed from a period other than the current period, use the current period as the base period. Then add (+) or subtract (-) a certain number of periods to obtain the period needed. For example, the current period is period 4 and Last Year was entered in the "yr field". To print information from period 7 of last year, enter a +3 in this field. This tells the software to add 3 to the current period to determine the period from which the information is to be taken. To print information from period 1, 3 would be entered.

First select the plus or minus and press Enter, then enter the number and press Enter again.

Data type

This field is skipped if Next year was selected in the Year field. Select the data type Actual or Budget to display in this column.


Level numbers are used in both the rows and columns to indicate to Spectrum which numbers to place in which columns, and how to total the columns in the report. Valid level numbers are 11 through 19. The level number entered here will correspond to level numbers entered in Define Financial Report Rows.

No more than two level numbers may be assigned to any one column.


Select if the column will be formatted to print data as a percentage.


For column types A#, AD, FD, and N, a description of the type of information in the field displays.


Column Type F allows entry of a formula; the report will print the calculation results. Formulas are executed from left to right without regard for arithmetic precedence. They may reference only numeric columns and constants. A formula may refer to a column containing a formula provided that the column number being defined is greater than the number of the column referenced (that is, a column formula may reference other column formulas so long as the column being defined is to the right of the column(s) being referred to). Formulas are entered as:

operand operator operand operator operand operator operand (and so forth)

Operands may be zero, a positive number greater than zero, or a column number from the report. If column numbers are used, the number must be preceded by #. Operators are addition (+), subtraction (-), multiplication (*), and division (/)

Formula Examples:


To total columns 2, 3, and 4

#2 + #3 +#4

To average columns 2, 3, and 4

#2 + #3 + #4 / 3

To create a variance percentage

#2 - # 3 / #2 * 100

Multiple operators in a formula must always be separated by an operand. For example, #2* 1 is not a valid formula.

Display code

When defining columns, this field is used to tailor the type and format of numeric characters that print in the columns. Enter a display code, which can be overwritten (for example, if you do not want to display cents on the report, you would enter the display as ZZZ,ZZZ,ZZZ.).

If a field length is changed after creating the report, the corresponding display code must also be changed. See the table below for appropriate codes.