Filtering Dimensional Data in Cognos BI

Have you started building BI reports using Cognos TM1 as a data source?  Are your reports returning data a little slower than you would like?  First thing you might want to check on are the filters you’re using in Report Studio.  In the query area, there is a place for 3 types of filters: detail filters, summary filters and slicer filters.

Filtering Dimensional Data in Cognos BI
Cognos TM1 as a data source

Detail filters are used to filter detail level values within a report.  This type of filter will go to the lowest level of granulatrity and is best used with relational data sources.

Summary filters are used to filter summary level data in a report.  For example, you could filter on the summarized values of a product line for the highest selling product.

Slicers are used for dimensional models.  These filters touch the cell value; not the edges of the rows or columns.  Use slicers to reduce some of the data returned while showing the data you want in your report.  It should be noted that IBM recommends using slicers in all dimensional data models and limiting, or removing altogether, the use of detail/summary filters, if possible.  I can also attest through personal trial and error that it does make a big difference in some cases.

Go through your dimensionally-fed reports and check what filters you’re using.  Try replacing your detail/summary filters with slicers and see how your report responds.  You might be surprised at how much faster your report returns. If you'd like to learn more about using Cognos TM1 as a data source, do not hesitate to contact us at

Leave a Comment

Send this to a friend