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This is actually how WE do it consistently in the Standards and also in the SOH book. However, from my perspective this is not something that IBCS should mandate. I don’t see a problem if every company finds their own style of using capital and small letters, as long as they do it consistently.

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Title line 2-Business measures: Use capital letters only for the first word of the measure name- Example:

Net sales and not Net Sales

Income statement and not Income Statement

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The letter „C“ in Figures 2.3-1,2.3-2 and 2.3-4 was intended to indicate that the space between the legends and the objects they label should be of consistent width. However, there is no explanation of this in the text. I think we should add such an explanation in v1.2.

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Letter „C“ in blue in Figures 2.3-1,2.3-2 and 2.3-4 indicates de space between the legends and bars, columns and lines. Space must be……

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Hi Mark –

I think you are absolutely right and we should change this picture. I do not remember when this picture was created – I think it is from around 2007… So it is time for an update!

I will take your suggestions and present a draft for the discussion of the suggested changes for version 1.2 of the standards which is planned for the time between May 1 and May 31.


I do agree with Edward Tufte’s general critique concerning these typical pie charts with (too) many segments. But I think that pie charts (of even different sizes) with only one segment can be a good choice in certain situations. One of them you see in picture CH 3.3 of the standards… 😊

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Good suggestions in my opinion and I actually think there are still more definitions to be made. However, UNIFY rule 1.2 is just about using a consistent notation within one company (as proposed by Work Group 3 for IBCS v1.2) not ruling which one. It’s probably the task of the ISO to define generally accepted norms for numbers, units and dates.

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It is a fact that many companies do not use calendar months as financial periods, but use one of the 4-4-5 combinations (4-4-5, 4-5-4 or 5-4-4)
Therefore, I would suggest adding these period and quarter prefixes when any form of 4-4-5 financial calendar is used.
For eample: 2015-P01.. 2015-P12 and 2015-FQ1..2015-FQ4, where P stands for a period of 4 or 5 weeks and FQ stands for a Financial Quarter.
Thank you,


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„There is only one thing worse than a pie-chart: several of them“ E. Tufte.

with acceptance of rule ex 2.1 the right part of the illustration should provide valid alternatives to the pie/donoght charts. a stacked bar chart is very unlikely an alternativ to the twin pie charts.

a proper replacement would be two 100% bar charts or a line chart (which i prefer: easy to compare absolute values and deviation (inclination)
Suggested replacement of EX 2.1

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I suggest to delete the following two sentences:

„The labels of pins and the numbers representing variances in tables can be colored in the same way.“
This is actually outdated. Red and green should only be used to color the elements representing the variance thus getting smaller and larger as the figures get smaller and larger.

Note: These colors for positive, negative, or neutral variances must not be confused with red and green “traffic lights” (see also EXPRESS rule EX 2.5 “Replace traffic lights”).“
This has nothing to do with relative variances and distracts more than it helps.

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Requesting that the „notation of messages should be two text lines“ is probably too strict. I’d like to remove that and only request that the „position of messages should be either…“

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