Are Your Cognos Performance Issues Really Cognos Issues?

Cognos Performance Issues & Roadblocks
Cognos is only one piece for success

One drink too many and I suddenly develop turrets and start shouting things like “Cognos can do that.”  Lodestar Solutions used to be a IBM Cognos only shop. However, for over 3 years now, Lodestar Solutions has moved to a software agnostic approach to business analytics coaching. We made this change after asking ourselves, “Why are some implementations a major success and others just never get off the ground?” or “Are your Cognos performance issues really Cognos issues?”

After pouring through the data and examining hundreds of projects and client relations, we realized it was simple. People and process account for over 80% of a successful analytics program. The tool is tertiary, but it is typically the main focus! As if buying a tool will fix process and people problems.

But I digress. Last week I was at a Tableau event and just happened to meet a woman who was their hot prospect. She is currently a Cognos OEM client and has over 900 customer dashboards developed and being used. An incredibly impressive business case.

She is considering moving her company off of Cognos to Tableau because of performance issues and functionally limitations placed on Cognos by the OEM.

As the evening and the open bar was coming to a close, we moved our data analytics conversation down to the beach with two of the Tableau sales reps.

Etiquette would say as a guest at the event and still in the company of 2 Tableau sales reps, I should not sway this women’s option and allow her to continue on her own path of discovery. However, we had now spent several hours together and the business analytics coach in me could no longer hold my tongue.

It turns out Cognos was sharing the same resources as the ERP system. As end users were querying through massive amounts of data, front end transactions were being recorded into production tables.

However, instead of eloquently stating that no reporting tool is going to fix your performance if you have a resource contention issue, I blurted out Cognos is not the problem.

Now this is not to say that Tableau would not be a good fit in her organization. In my less than eloquent state, I was trying to convey that most of the time it’s not the tool that’s the issue, but the processes around the data, how the tool operates and/or lack of end user knowledge. That’s the focus at Lodestar Solutions and we must reiterate…without the “people” and good “processes” you're only 20% invested in a successful analytics program no matter what software tool you use. And that's why we offer a software selection checklist to all clients or we can come in and assist you with this entire process. For more information to help solve your Cognos performance issues or to receive a checklist, contact us at


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