WOW! That was my first impression of IBM Cognos Analytics (Cognos 11) as I spent some time with working with it over the past week. Lodestar Solutions has planned a webinar to walk through IBM Cognos Analytics on April 14th, 2016 at noon EST. Below are some highlights of Cognos 11 and we will spend more time on April 14th going through each of these items in addition to having a live demo.
The install on my machine was quick and simple. You no longer have to spend time dealing with Internet Information Services (IIS) and it installs a default content manager, although I easily changed that.
Once the install was complete, I opened up BI and the portal has changed significantly. However, it has changed for the better! The top left has buttons for my content and team content along with an improved search box and a recent area, much like windows.
At the bottom left, you will find a new button which gives you quick access to build a report or dashboard and create a data module. You may, from here, also upload files, see any notifications, and manage the system. Inside the manage tab you will be able to manage all of the accounts and activities, manage content and data servers, configure system setting and link to the admin console that you would be familiar with in version 10.
Reporting is considerably different in Cognos 11. There is no longer a report studio, analysis studio, query studio and workspace advanced to build reports. What you do get is all of those studios rolled in one reporting area. You can customize it to fit your needs and the needs of the report writer. Personally, I think IBM hit a home run with this reporting area! When you first access it, it will feel a little overwhelming. However, as you spend more time in the reporting area you will find that the flow and set up make writing report so much easier. The included templates and themes help you format reports quickly and professionally.
If the reporting area is a home run, then the dashboard area is a grand slam! I will go into a ton more detail on the Cognos 11 dashboards during the April 14th webinar, but as you can see the image below looks great and it took me less than an hour to build!
One last item I will highlight is the “my home” area in Cognos 11. Here you can go to the home screen without closing your reports and the even better news is that you can seamlessly go from report to report! Doesn’t seem like much but in my opinion this is a huge timesaver!
I believe that IBM has hit a home run with Cognos Analytics!!! Are there a few things missing? Yes, but I would expect those items to be part of an update in the future. I will cover all the good and the couple missing items on the webinar on April 14th! Please join by clinking the link below!