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Cognos customers extend PM investment with Cognos 8 Planning

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Cognos has announced that customers worldwide are extending their performance management investment with Cognos 8 Planning 8.2.
Now in the deployment phase with customers, Cognos 8 Planning 8.2 extends integration with the Cognos 8 Business Intelligence platform, enabling the development of performance management solutions that fully leverage BI data, allow for shared infrastructure through a single interface and provide additional process accelerators across finance and line of business operations.

Cognos 8 Planning 8.2 shares the identical platform services and data management layer that Cognos 8 BI uses for scorecarding, reporting and analysis. This deep integration delivers a single, trusted, reliable data source that finance can easily access and IT managers can more easily manage and support.
David McWilliam, MD of Cognos SA, comments: "Cognos Planning is the latest innovation that further strengthens our position in the Performance Management (PM) arena. It is already a critically important, strategic solution for some of our international customers and the rich functionality is now available to the local market.  It delivers more performance functionality, strengthened security and the ability to seamlessly leverage the reporting and analysis capabilities of the entire Cognos performance management platform for a standardised approach."
Cognos 8 Planning 8.2 also provides enhanced integration with third-party certified data sources such as SAP/BW. This seamless integration improves data access and management and reduces total cost of ownership for customers.
"As an SAP customer, the integration of Cognos Planning 8.2 with SAP data is something we welcome to improve data access and reporting," says David Shaw, director of financial planning and analysis, Ryerson Inc. "We appreciate the productivity improvements made in this release through elements like input validations which reduces administrator cross-checking, decreases planning cycle time and facilitates enforcement of corporate policies. The attachments feature also helps business planners and contributors easily communicate the policies and rationale for their plans and forecasts to form one shared system of record for performance."
Cognos Planning employs a distributed global administration model which helps Finance and IT avoid becoming a bottleneck to the administration of the planning process across geographies, business units and departments. Business or process owners are able to determine security rights and automate process steps such as data uploads.
"The convergence of BI and performance management capabilities continues as customer requirements and implementation strategies require planning and budgeting capabilities, robust reporting, and data integration.  Cognos has responded to these demands with the expanded capabilities of Cognos 8 Planning version 8.2," says Kathleen Wilhide, research director, GRC and BPM Solutions, IDC. "With capabilities such as increased integration of heterogeneous data sources and seamless reporting powered by Cognos 8 BI, users can achieve maximum value from the implementation of the updated Cognos Planning 8.2 solution."
Cognos Planning helps finance departments define and link the operational drivers for a company's entire planning, budgeting and forecasting process, enables broad-based collaboration in planning across organisations, and helps managers align resource allocation decisions in response to changing market conditions quickly and with confidence.
It is a core component of the Cognos 8 Performance Management Platform that enables finance to automate existing spreadsheet-based systems, establish best practices, and extend solutions to holistically model the organisation, providing decision-makers with greater visibility and control of future operating performance.
McWilliam adds: "As we continue to extend our financial performance management capabilities, Cognos' rich history of innovation offers customers reliable and robust solutions that add to the breadth of the entire Cognos 8 Performance Management platform. We are confident organisations will continue to drive performance gains with the one solution that delivers a dramatic increase in visibility into business drivers and improved control over the levers for financial and operational performance improvement."