Cognos BI vs Microsoft BI? Facts And 1 Man’s Opinion


As a Business Analytics Coach, I’m often asked to compare Cognos BI to other BI products.  Today I’m going to compare Cognos BI vs Microsoft BI.  At Lodestar Solutions, we believe our processes and implementation plan allow for success with any platform.  However, being informed in the difference in solutions can help make the process much easier.

Both tools offer professional report authoring, ad hoc queries, analysis options, OLAP, dashboards, cloud and many other options.  Both tools offer a lot. However, Microsoft BI can be quite cost prohibitive to deploy as you are required to purchase SharePoint Enterprise Edition and at least SQL server BI Edition.

Weaknesses of Microsoft BI and our recommendation for Cognos BI:

Cognos BI versus Microsoft BI

With the recent announcement that Cognos Express is now available as the same install as Enterprise editions of TM1 and BI (limited by license count) – it is a no brainer that Cognos BI with TM1 integration offers more for each functional area.  Specifically, it offers an easily configured self-service environment with professional report writing, desktop modeling, mobile deployment and “what if” scenarios write back through performance management, TM1.  The Cognos Express price point is such that small to mid-market clients can effectively purchase and implement a BI and Performance Management solution with very little involvement from IT.

There are many BI solutions out there and most offer the same types of things.  Make sure you look into the weeds a little deeper and see what the draw backs to each solution may be.  Lodestar Solutions can help you start this process using our software selection program and some of our project management tools so please contact us at

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