IBM Cognos Express is a business intelligence and planning platform with integrated Reporting, Analysis, Planning and Budgeting modules, offered by IBM for mid-sized companies.
It is a pre-configured out-of-the-box BI platform, easy to deploy, manage and requires a minimum IT involvement.
The platform is based on the TM1 OLAP in-memory engine, ensuring efficient response times and administration and security is provided by the central management console.
Cognos Express limitations
The main limitations of Cognos Express versus Cognos 8 BI are:
Cognos Express can be only single host with limited PVU
Cognos Express installation is limited to 100 users
Lack of the Go!Mobile and Go!Search modules
Limited connectivity to the ERP systems (SAP, Oracle, etc.)
Cognos 8 BI has much broader security, authorization and access control capabilities
Cognos 8 BI is available on Windows, Linux and most Unix systems, where the Cognos Express is Windows only
In terms of usage and user experience it has the same limitations as Cognos TM1 (formerly Applix TM1)
IBM Cognos Express components
Express Xcelerator - Microsoft Excel based planning and business analysis tool, which implements a powerful in-memory analytics engine for OLAP analysis, reporting and planning.
The Xcelerator can be accessed with an Excel interface or Web.
It provides what-if analysis, write back capabilities and workflow management.
Express Reporter - reporting and ad-hoc query tool, connects to a variety of data sources (relational, OLAP and desktop files), can be used to create operational reports, ad-hoc queries and dashboards. Reports created with reporter can be delivered via web, email, made available on the Portal or send out as PDF or Excel.
Express Advisor - real-time adhoc analysis and visualization tool based on the in-memory multidimensional model which can be embedded into Microsoft Office applications. Advisor provides analysis interface, lets users create what-if models and allows standard OLAP operations like drill down, slice and dice and data filtering.
Express planner - planning, budgeting and forecasting application which provides a set of templates, real-time engine and automated workflows.
The IBM Cognos Express platform is based on 4 products which are implemented (and sold) as separate modules:
Cognos Express modeling tools
Cognos express provides a couple of metadata modeling tools, where all of those tools have their correspondents in the enterprise application.
The Cognos Express modeling tools are:
- Reporter uses Framework Manager for publishing packages in the same way as in the Cognos 8 Business Intelligence
- Xcelerator uses models created in TM1 Architect and Xcelerator client (TM1 and TM1WEB)
- Advisor is based on models created with the TM1 Executive Viewer data advisor