The Secret to Reordering Your Cognos Planning E-list


Have you ever tried reordering your Cognos Planning E-list and wondered, ”What the Heck is going on?” For years, I have told clients the E-list in Cognos Planning is the spine of your Cognos Planning Contributor model. Furthermore, you can avoid having surgery by reordering it. But sometimes you just have to reorder the E-List so that the data rolls up properly for the reviewers. So, here are your secrets to reordering your Cognos Planning E-list.

Let's begin...

In our example, we notice that location 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC is in the original E-list but it rolls up to 0001- FS1- System Improvement and therefore to Direct Projects. We need 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC to roll up to 0000- Corporate instead of to Direct Projects.

cognos planning e-list
cognos planning e-list

You will notice that 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC already has some data entered and we don’t want to lose the data the end users entered. Notice data entered and saved Employee Hours Cube Budget Version.

cognos planning e-list

When we look at the Cognos Planning D-List in Analyst, we see our 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC is in the middle of the list.

cognos planning e-list

However, we see 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC is included in the calculation for 0001- FS1 System Improvement. We will need to fix that because we want it to roll up to the 0000- COR -Corporate node instead.

cognos planning e-list

Note that the Calculation Order is important. See how 0695 is at the top of the 0001 calculation above. The order of the calculation determines the Contributor E-List order as you can see below.

cognos planning e-list

"Ok....what's next?"

We determined earlier that we needed to move 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC so that it rolls up to 0000- COR – Corporate. So let’s go look again at the calculations in the D-List in Cognos Planning Analyst. We will need to remove 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC from the 0001 Calculation by deleting it from the calculation and click Apply then Save.

cognos planning e-list

Now we need to add 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC to 0000 calculation. Once it’s added manually, move it to assure the item will be in the order you want it in the calculation because that’s the order that will be displayed in the Cognos Planning Contributor. Remember to save your work. See below.

cognos planning e-list

The next step is to Export D-List from Analyst as an E-List. Select Text to Column creating a .txt file in Excel. Now return to Cognos Planning Contributor Administration and expand the E-list folder for the application to see the structure. Click Import as a .txt file. Make sure there are no errors or warnings received during import. The Cognos Planning E-list is now updated and its appearance is based on the calculation order, not D-list item order in analyst. Notice that 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC now rolls up to 0000 COR- Corporate. However, we are not done yet.

cognos planning e-list

You will need to complete the Go To Production Process (GTP) in the Cognos Planning Admin. Make sure you see only changes and no deletions, no destructive changes!

cognos planning e-list

As you can now see, 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC rolls up to 0000 COR – Corporate.

cognos planning e-list

Finally, you will see that as we open 0695.00.00 Rockingham NC, the data still exists. Due to our previous steps, you'll see we didn’t lose the work already completed by the end users.

cognos planning e-list

So, that’s the secret to reordering your Cognos Planning E-list and not losing data. Hopefully this information will help save you time and frustation with Cognos Planning.

"I still get frustrated and want to better use my time!"

Let’s now talk more about your time and frustrations with Cognos Planning! Did you know that IBM has a much more powerful tool? One that handles much larger models! It doesn’t require time consuming Sync and Go To Production processes. Furthermore, it does not require the E-list. IBM Cognos Performance Management TM1 is an extremely powerful tool that allows greater flexibility. Here at Lodestar Solutions, we feel the future of Cognos Planning is in question! IBM’s lifecycle page tells you how long IBM will support IBM Cognos Planning.

We encourage you to start considering and defining your migration to a better tool. To learn the benefits of TM1 over Cognos Planning check out our “Migrating From IBM Cognos Planning To TM1” blog.

Lodestar Solutions wants you to be educated as possible, so we created a library of videos that will help you evaluate TM1. We encourage you to check out our Move to TM1 Program. And if you have any specific questions, please contact us at and one of our analytics coaches will contact you.

If you learned something from this blog, we encourage you to refer back to the previous tips in this series....

Check out Tip #1 on what your future plans should be for Cognos Planning by CLICKING THIS LINK.

For Tip #2 on the questions most asked by Cognos Planning clients, learn more by CLICKING THIS LINK.

Refer back to Tip #3 on how to simplify D-List maintenance by CLICKING THIS LINK.

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