What’s New in Cognos Analytics 12.0.1

What's New in Cognos Analytics 12.0.1
What's New in Cognos Analytics 12.0.1
Written by Mike Bernaiche, October 13th, 2023

IBM released Cognos Analytics 12 in June 2023, adding an enhanced experience for all users with the incredible assistant, lighting quick dashboards, and so much more.  Now IBM has released Cognos Analytics 12.0.1 with some additional enhancements. Below I will provide all the details of what is new in Cognos Analytics 12.0.1

General Enhancements in Cognos Analytics 12.0.1

Favorites – In the Content view, you can now mark items as a favorite by clicking the heart icon.  Your Favorite items will show up in your favorite tab.

Search Result Enhancements – a new result reason option has been added to search results to show reasons why the search returned various items.

AI-Generated Recommendations in Learn Panel - the recommendation engine makes daily updates based on what you and other users are searching for.  Each search you make in the learn panel makes it better and better.

AI-Generated Recommendations in Learn Panel

AutoComplete and Popular Search Suggestions in Learn Panel - The Learn pane now predicts your search query as you type keywords in the Search field and displays a list of search suggestions from all content types.

Assistant

Assistant and Learn Panel Integration - The Assistant now gives you the option to jump to the Learn pane if it cannot find an answer to a general usage question. You can use the Learn pane to find help in the product documentation, blogs, and videos.

Share Narrative Insights from Assistant – You can now share insights with or without a visualization via email, Slack, or Teams.

New Option for adding Visualizations to Dashboard – You can now add a visualization from the assistant to a new dashboard or a current dashboard by clicking the add to button or dragging the visualization to an open dashboard.

New Option for adding Visualizations to Dashboard

Usability Improvements and Natural Language Enhancements - The Assistant now understands choose source, set source, change source, and select source when you want to change the Assistant's data source.  When you ask the Assistant a question that doesn't require a visualization, the Assistant now responds with just the relevant values.  The assistant now understands: What is, When is, Where is, Who is.

Dashboards

Automatic Sorting in Month, Weekday, and Season Columns - In newly loaded database schemas and uploaded files, the members in the month, weekday, or season columns are automatically sorted in chronological order, no matter in which order they are listed originally.

Showing Additional Data Values in Tooltips – display additional values in the tooltip data field.

Expanding Visualization Content in PDF Content - You can configure crosstab, table, or list visualizations on the dashboard to export detailed information into new pages in the PDF output. A hyperlink at the visualization on the main canvas in the PDF file directs you to the new page where the detailed visualization information appears.

Showing and Styling Stack Labels in Stacked Visualizations – New show stacked label property to show the sum of each item in a stacked visualization.

Showing and Styling Stack Labels in Stacked Visualizations

Additional Fields in Line and Column Visualization – 2 new fields are available in this visualization.  Column y start and Column Target.

Additional Fields in Line and Column Visualization

Styling Titles of Repeated Row and Columns in Visualizations – When you repeat a column or row you can now add formatting to those titles.

Styling Titles of Repeated Row and Columns in Visualizations

Icon Visibility in the Visualization Header – you can hide or show icons in the visualization header now in Cognos Analytics 12.0.1

Better Documentation of all Visualizations – please see the link for this documentation. 

Reporting

Excel Sheet Naming Improvements – In Cognos Analytics 12.0.1 this has been greatly improved.  Please see link for all the details.  

Event Agent

Event Studio – Event Studio was reinstated as a standard component in Cognos Analytics 12.0.1 and is now named Event Agent.

Administration

Activities Page Enhancements – The activities page contains many improvements and is best described here.  

New Settings for Uploaded File and Data Set Size - Administrators can now use the Manage component to configure size limits for uploaded files and for data sets.

New Settings for Uploaded File and Data Set Size

New Watsonx Data Connector - A new connection editor, watsonx.data, is available for creating data source connections.

Summary

There you have it; Cognos Analytics 12.0.1 brings some nice enhancements across the board in Cognos Analytics.

If you haven’t checked out my blog on Cognos Analytics 12, please check that out here

Next, head over to this blog to understand why you should upgrade today.  

Last, you can check out a quick demo of Cognos 12, most specifically the amazing Assistant here

You can always reach me at services@lodestarsolutions.com to discuss your specific needs.  We offer some amazing upgrade bundles to get you on the latest and greatest version.

Elevate Your Analytics: Why You Should Upgrade to Cognos Analytics 12

Elevate Your Analytics: Why You Should Upgrade to Cognos Analytics 12
Elevate Your Analytics: Why You Should Upgrade to Cognos Analytics 12
Written by Mike Bernaiche, September 13th, 2023

With the release of Cognos Analytics 12 in June 2023, IBM has taken a product with a long history and redefined what business intelligence means.  In the fast-paced world of business intelligence, staying ahead of the curve is essential for making data-driven decisions that drive success. For years, IBM Cognos Analytics has been a reliable companion for organizations seeking powerful insights, and with the release of Cognos Analytics 12, the benefits have reached new heights. If you're still contemplating whether to upgrade, this blog will delve deeper into compelling reasons why you should make the leap to Cognos Analytics 12.

Modern and Intuitive User Experience

Modern and Intuitive User Experience in CA 12

One of the standout features of Cognos Analytics 12 is its sleek and intuitive user interface. The redesign goes beyond aesthetics; it offers a streamlined and contemporary look, making it easier for both novice and experienced users to navigate and work with data. This modernization enhances the overall user experience, boosting productivity and reducing the learning curve, enabling your team to make quicker, more informed decisions. Start anywhere, go anywhere is the way forward.  Utilizing the new welcome page where the Assistant is front and center, makes getting started easier than ever.

Enhanced Data Visualization

Enhanced Data Visualization in CA 12

Data visualization is at the heart of any effective business intelligence tool, and Cognos Analytics 12 takes this to a new level. With advanced charting options, improved data storytelling capabilities, and more interactive dashboards, you can now transform your raw data into compelling visual narratives. This upgrade enables your organization to communicate insights more effectively and engage stakeholders with data-driven stories, making your data more impactful than ever before.  With 36 modern visualizations included with the product plus the ability to add custom visualizations, Cognos Analytics 12 is a visualization powerhouse.

AI-Powered Insights

AI-Powered Insights in CA 12

Cognos Analytics 12 harnesses the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to help you unearth hidden trends and patterns in your data. The AI-driven features provide smart recommendations, automated data preparation, and predictive analytics, empowering users to make data-driven decisions with confidence. It's like having a data scientist at your fingertips, helping you extract actionable insights effortlessly. This AI integration not only saves time but also opens new avenues for data analysis.

Scalability and Performance

As your organization grows, so does the volume of data you need to analyze. Cognos Analytics 12 is built for scalability, ensuring it can handle large datasets and complex analytics without compromising on performance. Whether you have a small team or an enterprise-level organization, this upgrade will support your data needs today and in the future. You can scale your data analytics as your business expands without worrying about bottlenecks or slowdowns.

Integration Capabilities

Seamless integration with other data sources and systems is crucial for a comprehensive business intelligence solution. Cognos Analytics 12 offers enhanced integration capabilities, making it easier to connect to various data sources, such as cloud-based services, data warehouses, and external databases. This means you can centralize your data and access a unified view of your organization's information, breaking down silos and enabling cross-functional analysis.

Enhanced Data Governance and Security

Data governance and security are paramount in the age of data privacy regulations and cyber threats. Cognos Analytics 12 includes robust features for data governance, allowing you to define and enforce data policies, monitor data usage, and ensure compliance. Enhanced security measures protect your sensitive data from unauthorized access, giving you peace of mind when handling critical information. With data breaches on the rise, investing in a secure solution is non-negotiable.  Be secure in the knowledge that your data is safe and governed, while your users are analyzing a single source of the truth.

Collaboration and Sharing

Collaboration is key to fostering a data-driven culture within your organization. Cognos Analytics 12 offers improved collaboration tools, allowing teams to work together seamlessly. Users can share insights, reports, and dashboards easily, facilitating knowledge sharing and decision-making across the organization. Whether your teams are in the same office or spread across the globe, this level of collaboration ensures that insights are accessible to everyone who needs them.  With integrations for Slack and Microsoft Teams, collaboration and sharing have never been so easy. 

Call to Action - Upgrade Now to Cognos Analytics 12

What are you waiting for?  If you are looking to upgrade your existing Cognos Analytics environment reach out to us at services@lodestarsolutions.com today!  We have excellent upgrade bundles that save you time and money and more importantly, give you the power of Cognos Analytics 12.  If you are on Cognos Analytics 11.1.7 or an earlier version, you need to upgrade today.  Support will soon run out on all versions prior to 11.2.  Now is a great time to plan your upgrade.  Reach out to us for our upgrade checklist to make this process easy and efficient.  You can read here about the end of support for 11.1.7.  

Conclusion

In a world where data is the lifeblood of modern businesses, upgrading to Cognos Analytics 12 is not just a smart move; it's a strategic imperative. With its modern user interface, AI-powered insights, scalability, and enhanced security, this latest version is designed to meet the evolving demands of the business intelligence landscape. Don't miss out on the opportunity to empower your team with the tools they need to extract valuable insights from your data and drive success. Upgrade to Cognos Analytics 12 today and stay ahead of the competition. Elevate your business intelligence, and the results will speak for themselves.

Still not convinced you need to upgrade? Check out our Cognos Analytics 12 Demo!


For those reading this that are involved in your business's planning and budgeting process.  Register for the next big event. 

The Pain of Outgrowing Excel Midmarket CFOs Discover Relief with IBM Planning Analytics

Welcome to Cognos Analytics 12

Welcome to Cognos Analytics 12
Welcome to Cognos Analytics 12
Written by Mike Bernaiche, June 8th, 2023

It is here!  Cognos Analytics 12 was released on June 6, 2023.  As you can imagine there is a lot to unpack with this latest major release from IBM.  The key points to this update include:

  • Increased productivity with AI-driven self-service analytics. Answers will be shown as both charts and NLG narrative insights, so even first-time users can get the most out of their data.
  • Enhanced performance for instantly responsive dashboards. New caching technology enables instant feedback in dashboards when filtering and interacting, without having to wait for more queries to run.
  • Build dashboards quickly with the new guided UI.  Get started using your data to create a dashboard, either data from a spreadsheet that you upload or your governed enterprise data.

Now that we have covered the highlights, let’s dive into the details.

General Updates

  • Welcome Page Updates – The welcome page has been redesigned to put AI and self-service at the forefront.  Start quicker and easier with the new welcome page.
Welcome Page in Cognos Analytics 12
  • Custom Tabs in Content View – Previous to Cognos Analytics 12, administrators could only add one extra tab to this view.  Now administrators can add multiple folders to this view.
  • Support for Fuzzy Search – now searching lists results that closely match your search, not exactly.
  • Enhancements to Embedded Reports in Microsoft Teams - If you are using the Microsoft Teams Web application, you can now log in to your embedded report or dashboard using your IBM ID.  A new link in your embedded report or dashboard tab in Microsoft Teams allows you to open Cognos Analytics in a new browser window.
  • Interactive Performance Assistant (IPA) – Report and dashboard authors can now gather statistics on performance.
  • New Videos on Cognos Analytics 12 – please see link for all available videos. 

Assistant

There are many enhancements to the Assistant, hitting on 1 of the key highlights of Cognos Analytics 12.

  • Design and Usability Improvements – The assistant is now more intuitive and guided for the end user making self-service easier and quicker.
Design and Usability Improvements in Cognos Analytics 12
  • Open the Assistant from Anywhere – You can now open the Assistant from the Home page.  Previously you could only open from Reports, Dashboards, and Explorations.
  • Select Your Data Source - You can quickly set the context for the Assistant by clicking Select Source to select a data source. The name of the data source then displays in the Assistant.
Select Your Data Source in Cognos Analytics 12
  • Expand to Full Screen
  • Clear Chat and Reset Data Source
  • Natural Language Improvements to Assistant - The Assistant now understands comparatives and additional filters.  You can also associate a term with a field name so that the Associate recognizes the term to be a synonymous word for the field name.

Examples

  • How do marketing costs for the last two years compare?
  • What is the difference in marketing costs between the last two years?
  • Compare the average ticket of Store A and Store B
  • What city has an average ticket above 90,000?
  • Which product has the highest revenue today?
  • Which product has the worst NPS Score?
  • View Narrative Insights in Assistant - The Assistant displays narrative insights automatically when it renders a chart or a visualization.  Any filters in the chart are also applied to the insights.
View Narrative Insights in Assistant in Cognos Analytics 12

You can also ask the Assistant to show you narrative insights without a chart by using commands such as:

  •  show insights for <column name>
  • explain <column name>
  • analyze <column name>
  • Share Visualizations from Assistant - A new share option in the Assistant allows you to select a visualization that was returned by the Assistant in response to your question and share it via Email, Microsoft Team, or Slack.  Your administrator must configure a mail server and/or a collaboration platform before you can use this feature.
Share Visualizations from Assistant in cognos analytics 12
  • Create a Simple Dashboard from Assistant – Previously you could only create a full dashboard from the assistant.  Now in Cognos Analytics 12, you can create a simple 1 visualization from the Assistant and then build around that visualization.
  • Embed Assistant on any Webpage or Web Application - The Assistant is now embeddable using the Cognos URL in an iFrame.  With this feature, you can embed an Assistant text field in your web page or web application and interact with the Assistant.  To embed the Assistant, use the following Cognos URL in an iFrame:
    https://<cognos server>:<port>/bi/?perspective=assistant

Dashboards

There are a few updates to dashboards and one of them is a big one!  Who doesn’t want a dashboard that loads and filters in less than a second?

  • Configuration of Local Cache - Dashboard authors can now configure specific data to be cached locally.  This helps them to optimize the performance of their dashboard's widgets.  Click here to learn more about this. 
  • Statistical Details for Multi Variant Forecast - When the dashboard is in Edit mode, select a visualization that has Forecast enabled.  From the Analytics icon, click See Statistical Details to view the statistical details on the forecasting results.
  • Nested Dashboards 
Nested Dashboards in Cognos Analytics 12

Reporting

  • Define Default Parameters in a Report - Reporting now includes the functionality to define default parameter values in a report. The values can be specified as a static text, a report expression, or a data item with a corresponding query.
  • Range Values Based on Expression for Date Control –
Range Values Based on Expression for Date Control
  • Quick Links to Report Objects
Quick Links to Report Objects in Cognos Analytics 12

Deprecated and Removed Features in Cognos Analytics 12

The following components are removed from Cognos Analytics:

  •  Query Studio
  • Analysis Studio
  • Cognos Workspace

Summary

WOW, lots of enhancements in Cognos Analytics 12.  As of this writing, we are downloading and installing and will provide an update once I have had time to get my hands on the product.  Just reading what has been added and seeing videos from IBM, I’m really looking forward to this release.  Self-service and AI are the key additions that I know many customers have been asking for.  Would you like a live demo of Cognos Analytics 12?  Reach out to us at services@lodestarsolutions.com to set something up.

There are a number of changes to administration and you can find everything new in Cognos Analytics 12 here

There are also a few known issues and you can read about those here.

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