Cognos is good for a large sized healthcare organization, but it may be a conservative choice
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
December 11, 2018

Cognos is good for a large sized healthcare organization, but it may be a conservative choice

Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Modules Used

  • Report Studio

Overall Satisfaction with IBM Cognos

My company is a non-profit healthcare delivery institute. We have electronic health records that capture patient data from the clinical field through applications. The clinical data stored in the database is being secondarily used for scientific research and quality improvement. We adopted IBM Cognos as a tool to visualize data and develop web-based deliverable charts. It has been implemented through at enterprise-level in the whole organization.
  • It provides a graphic user interface for report authoring, which is easy to learn and straightforward to understand. It is easy to develop a report if authors have good understanding of data.
  • The data pipelining framework is stable. It didn't crash by connection failure, etc.
  • Cognos is designed for a report distribution to multiple analytics consumers. Report authors can set up distribution configurations with detailed conditions.
  • Authoring environment is designed to well adopt complicated formats of data sources.
  • Web-based authoring environment is slow, compared to Desktop based environment. It gets slower if the size of data gets bigger.
  • Congas is best when we create reports using coded data based on relational databases. Since a lot of clinical data are unstructured formatted, it may be required of good data wrangling function to include them into the reports.
  • Chart types and look and feel configuration flexibility are limited, especially compared to competitors such as Tableau. They are not terribly ugly, but not faulty looking with the default setting.
We considered several major commercial visualization and dashboarding tools and decided to adopt Tableau and Cognos. We're a healthcare delivery organization and security and privacy of patient data are a critical feature. For that reason, we preferred a well recognized and already proven products rather than a non-guaranteed brand/new product. Congos is not the richest functioned tool but provided stable performance with great business support.
Cognos provides good data connectivity to popular data sources; relational databases such as Oracle, SQL server, Google analytics, files, Hadoop based data sources. It provides functions to merge data from different sources and configure scheduling such as regular data extraction. It is a good report development and management tool for a large-sized company with strict data regulation such as a healthcare organization. The tool provides necessary functions to manage data in the development and run-time phases, with stable performance.
We integrated Cognos with out user management component: LDAP. Using user credentials and roles in the LDAP, we configured Cognos user's read privilege of reports. For example, doctors, nurses, nursing practitioners, pharmacists may have different roles, and also have different views depending on their units and facilities. Overall Cognos is a good report development and management tool for large-sized company with strict regulation and organization structure such as healthcare institutes. The tool provides necessary functions with stable performance, supported by IBM's business experience and expertise. If you're a small or mid sized company and need more flexible framework, Cognos may not be the best option.
We adopted Tableau and Cognos for different purposes to report management for clinicians and researchers. Congos is good for a scheduled reporting distribution at an enterprise level. For example, we could create customized reports by care units, facilities, regions and distribute them for targeted user groups. But Cognos is not a good tool for dashboard development, which provides a centralized and summarized view for multiple users. And other competitors like Tableau started adopting distribution or subscription functions which will infringe the traditional strength of Cognos.

IBM Cognos Feature Ratings

Pixel Perfect reports
8
Customizable dashboards
3
Report Formatting Templates
8
Drill-down analysis
8
Formatting capabilities
6
Integration with R or other statistical packages
6
Report sharing and collaboration
10
Publish to Web
8
Publish to PDF
9
Report Versioning
8
Report Delivery Scheduling
10
Delivery to Remote Servers
7
Location Analytics / Geographic Visualization
8
Predictive Analytics
8
Multi-User Support (named login)
10
Role-Based Security Model
9
Multiple Access Permission Levels (Create, Read, Delete)
10
Single Sign-On (SSO)
9
Responsive Design for Web Access
8
REST API
8
Javascript API
8
iFrames
9
Java API
9
Themeable User Interface (UI)
7