Integrating the Business Layer Components


After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Create Business Layer Folders
  • Create Business Layer Dimension Objects
  • Create Time Dimension Objects
  • Create Attribute Objects

Business Layer Folders

Universes group objects into folders. This grouping is done to provide a structure for the universe and makes it easier for users to locate particular objects. A common strategy is to group related dimension and attribute objects into one folder, while grouping measure objects into a unique and single-measures folder.

This strategy can be extended by introducing subfolders to break down the objects into further subsets.

Create Folders in the IDT

Watch this very short video on how to create a folder in the business layer.

Create and Populate the Business Layer with Folders

Create and populate the business layer with folders.

Business Layer Dimension Objects

Dimension objects, where possible, tend to be organized hierarchically within a folder. Each object maps to a column(s) or function in the target database via a SELECT statement.

Create Dimensions in the Business Layer

Watch this short video on how to add dimensions to a Business Layer.

Add Dimensions to the Business Layer

Add dimensions to the folders.

Time Dimension Objects

One of the most common requirements for data analysis is to provide the ability to analyze data for different time periods. Time is a special case because all the information for the dimension objects can come from a single date column in a database. In most other cases, each dimension object infers a separate database column.

Creating time dimension objects can be achieved by using SQL date scalar functions. SQL data scalar functions extract the day, month, year, and possibly quarter from a single database column of a date type. You create the standard time structure by ordering the objects Year, Quarter, Month, and Week.​


The scalar functions used to extract elements of a database vary with each database system and can be used in any object's SQL definition.

Create Time Dimensions in the IDT

In this short video, you can see how easy it is to create dimension objects for time by using database functions.

Create Time Dimension Objects Using SQL Functions

Create time dimension objects.

Attribute Objects

An attribute provides descriptive data about a dimension and is always attached to it. It maps one or more columns or functions in the database that provide detailed information related to a specific dimension.

To create an attribute


  1. Select the dimension for which you want to define the attribute and click the Insert object icon at the top of the Business Layer pane. Select Attribute. Define the SELECT statement for the attribute.

  2. Create a dimension object with a complete SELECT statement. Right-click the dimension object and select Turn into Attribute. Select the dimension to which you want to associate the attribute and click OK.

Create Attributes

Create the attributes required for existing dimension objects.

Log in to track your progress & complete quizzes