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IBM Cognos vs SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform comparison

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Buyer's Guide
IBM Cognos vs. SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform
July 2022
Find out what your peers are saying about IBM Cognos vs. SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform and other solutions. Updated: July 2022.
622,358 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"IBM Cognos offers tools so that you can design and develop your own test queries and reporting solutions.""Security administration tools are powerful and flexible.""The comprehensiveness or broadness of the software functions or business intelligence functions that it provides is valuable. It is also quite easy to use and user-friendly.""IBM Cognos improves the effectiveness of the sales team.""The product is a very good reporting tool and is very flexible. It allows for the users to get a scheduled report.""The most valuable features of IBM Cognos are governance and enterprise reporting.""In terms of stability, I think that Cognos is more stable than Tableau and Power Bi because of its framework manager concept that allows us to import metadata and store it in the framework manager.""The three IBM Cognos features I find the most valuable are Dynamic Cubes, PowerPlay, and Watson."

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"It is more user-friendly and easier to work with the report creation part, creating reports out of an established universe. Maybe a business person could liberate the existing universe and create a report on top of it, as well. So that's one cool feature.""We are using SAP BusinessObjects because its scheduling capabilities are more powerful than those of other tools.""The most important feature of BusinessObjects is its integration with the SAP ERP system. If an organization is using SAP as its ERP system, and they want to do business intelligence, reporting, or analysis, SAP BusinessObjects is the only tool that I see doing that quite efficiently. That's because of the fact it is tightly integrated, and it gives a good user experience in terms of faster reporting. Its integration is the feature that I have found most valuable, but there are also other factors.""I like the fact that we can integrate it seamlessly within our Epic environment, but probably the best thing that Crystal Reports offers is the ability to do visualizations. They're simple to do, and they're catchy. So, it is a really great tool.""There are two tools inside BusinessObjects' schematic layout called the Universal Design Tool and Information Design Tool. These are the most powerful tools that set BusinessObjects' reporting from other solutions. If my organization has 300 or 400 tables, I can combine all of them into one universe, and everyone can use that. It is just a schematic layout that does not hold any data but the table relationships.""The platform uses a lot of Java technologies so the performance and system-level management are tricky because it needs a lot of resources.""This reporting and broadcasting solution has a lot of flexibilities and can connect to multiple source systems.""We find the product to be very stable."

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Cons
"The high cost of a license makes it hard to scale up on a budget.""The performance is a bottleneck and something that can be improved.""The data uploads that we do, such as Excel files, have a lot of restrictions. If we can make it a bit more user-friendly, allowing us to have more flexibility it would be a great help.""Cognos is quite slow - it's missing the performance of the PowerPlay cubes.""Tableau and Power BI are faster than Cognos.""There are some small features that are missing. It would be nice if the graphics were better. You can use external sources for charts, but it's quite complex to use and not easy to implement. If you want a new chart, you can download it from multiple tools and implement it into IBM Cognos.""IBM Cognos's error messages seem to be a bit ambiguous. An error will be encountered and a message will be sent out very ambiguous and after investigating the error message it could be any number of issues. There was never a direct answer to the question or a direct answer to the error messages. Sometimes it would be a generic error message for 21 different solutions. It wasn't very specific, which required a lot of digging around and trial and error trying to fix the problem. The messaging in their error messaging is something needing improvement.""They should provide improved visual reporting."

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"The interface could be slicker and more user-friendly.""The initial setup could be simplified.""Most of the Apps right now are into dashboarding. This tool, for the Crystal Reports in the phase I'm primarily working on, does not have those dashboarding capabilities, like in the other advanced tools like Power BI or ClickView, and compared to them the dashboard generation is not that great.""Recently, it's become less stable if I am working on Citrix.""It needs to be more flexible for the end-user.""Tableau was easier for me to use because the interface is more similar to Excel which I was used to using.""The performance could be improved, like when we extract a large amount of data.""The solution can improve by having more analytical features."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "Pricing should be improved."
  • "The pricing of this product is meant for medium to large-scale enterprises."
  • "It is my understanding that the cost is very low. It's not very expensive."
  • "Cognos is super expensive compared to Tableau ($70/month) and Power BI ($20/month) — I think Cognos is roughly $200 a month."
  • "It is quite pricy. I think Microsoft BI is cheaper. Tableau might also be cheaper, but it also depends on the usage. If you have very many users, Cognos can be a problem. It could be cheaper than Tableau but not for so many users. If you have a few thousand users, Tableau, which is generally quite expensive, can be cheaper than Cognos."
  • "It's more expensive than similar solutions like Tableau and Power BI."
  • "There is a standard license required to use this solution. There are some additional tools but I am not sure if they are an extra cost."
  • "IBM Cognos price is on the higher side of the spectrum. However, with the features that it brings, such as correlation analysis, it's worth the money. They should look at the pricing more clearly because it's a little on the higher side."
  • More IBM Cognos Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "Its price is fair."
  • "It is not cost-effective. It is expensive."
  • "I have always found SAP BI to be expensive. It is expensive even when you compare SAP BI Cloud with Microsoft Power BI. Power BI is probably around $9.99 per month, and the cheapest SAP BI is around $20, which is double. In terms of price, Power BI is definitely a lot better. If you have budget issues, you may want to go for Power BI."
  • "We purchase licenses through Epic. So, we get an Epic price as opposed to the SAP price. If we were going to use other products like Webby that they offer or exclusively use BI Launch Pad, it would cost a lot because half of our employees would touch it in some fashion. So, we use Epic-Crystal integration to keep the licensing cost down. I believe the BI Launch Pad licensing is something like $800 for each, and the Crystal Report licensing is something like $500 for each, but that's not what we pay."
  • "The price and the pricing model are fine. We find the solution does not give us a lot of additional value."
  • "SAP is losing market to its competitors because of its costly user license and licensing model. They can do much better on the licensing side. That's what Microsoft has been doing, and that's why Power BI is gaining market share at the moment. SAP needs to relax a little bit on the licensing part. If Microsoft is giving people a solution that is half of the cost of SAP, people will definitely go with Power BI."
  • "SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is an expensive application."
  • "We are satisfied with the solution, but we are not satisfied with the licensing cost which SAP offers. They offer one lumpsum licensing which does everything. That is not the right strategy, because sometimes you don't have power users, they are only viewers, but we need to buy the full license for them. This is not something we want to continue with."
  • More SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:It depends on the Data architecture and the complexity of your requirement. Some great tools in the market are Qlik Sense, Power BI, OBIEE, Tableau, etc. I have recently started using Cognos… more »
    Top Answer:The product is a very good reporting tool and is very flexible. It allows for the users to get a scheduled report.
    Top Answer:As we get new requirements, we need to see if they fit into Cognos. As of right now, it fits our needs, however, that can change. We've had issues in the past that the solution is still working to… more »
    Top Answer:There are many...It would rather depend what System BI architecture or Enterprise legacy you have at your end...I would recommend as follows:  1) If you have legacies of SAP, Oracle  - look for SAP… more »
    Top Answer:Both tools have their positives and negatives. First, I should mention that I am relatively new to Tableau. I have been working on and off Tableau for about a year, but getting to work on it… more »
    Top Answer:Business analytics are the most valuable features of this solution; I don't have experience with the other functional features offered.
    Ranking
    Views
    12,929
    Comparisons
    10,023
    Reviews
    19
    Average Words per Review
    548
    Rating
    8.2
    Views
    12,083
    Comparisons
    9,398
    Reviews
    33
    Average Words per Review
    658
    Rating
    7.8
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Cognos, Cognos Analytics, IBM Cognos Analytics
    SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform, SAP BusinessObjects, Business Objects
    Learn More
    Overview

    Cognos Software is IBM's Business Intelligence and Performance Management solution, offering BI, strategy management, financial performance, and data analytics applications. Cognos caters to all levels in an organization with products designed for individuals, workgroups, departments, mid-size companies, and big enterprises.

    SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence is a centralized suite for data reporting, visualization, and sharing. SAP BusinessObjects BI provides a flexible, scalable platform that leverages up-to-date technologies and a comprehensive range of data sources to transform data into valuable insights, available anytime, anywhere.

    SAP BusinessObjects BI’s central, user-friendly, web-based interface provides simple data access and interactive analysis through a variety of customizable graphical reporting formats. Intelligent reporting, analysis, and a sophisticated dashboard allow users to ask business questions involving multiple data sources using their own business terms.

    SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Key Features

    • Central management: Access all your BI from a single, central launchpad that can be customized to meet user-specific needs. The launchpad provides business users with access to all their BI tools, reports, notifications, and applications in a single place. This includes the ability to launch SAP Analytics Cloud.

    • Data visualization and analytics: Create powerful visualizations, dashboards, and applications to assess risk, improve efficiency, identify opportunities, and enable users to analyze developments and data. Business insights can be shared with colleagues across enterprises.

    • Integration with Microsoft Office: Integrate with SAP Business Warehouse and SAP HANA to power real-time analytics. For large-scale data analysis, you can integrate with Microsoft Excel to discover in-depth business insights and forecasts. Data analytics information can also be embedded into Microsoft PowerPoint presentations.

    • Cloud support: Extend and expand your BI on the cloud. SAP Analytics Cloud connects your BI to the cloud and offers enterprise planning and advanced analytics from a single online solution.

    Reviews from Real Users

    SAP BusinessObjects BI stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Several major ones are its user-friendly dashboard, its impressive reporting and analytic features, and its ability to integrate with multiple solutions.

    A managing partner at a tech services company writes, "One of the most valuable features of SAP BusinessObjects is that it's not a dashboarding solution. It's a real product. You can create operational reports and publish it to anyone. You can create schedules. You can create a Universe, semantic layers. There's also a security configuration. It's a huge product, so if there is a business need, SAP BusinessObjects can cover it."

    An associate manager at a consultancy notes, "It provides flexibility for creating reports. It is very good for creating highly complex reports. I like this solution because when I buy BusinessObjects, it comes with many components, such as reporting, dashboard, and data visualization tools. Its performance is good. It is running on top of SAP BW and SAP HANA."

    A manager of data analytics and interfaces at a healthcare company says, "It has got great flexibility. As a reporting tool, it has a great deal of flexibility for numerous data resources that you can bring into it. It allows you to write your SQL query directly within the product. It has great visualization. 

    Offer
    Learn more about IBM Cognos
    Learn more about SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform
    Sample Customers
    More than 23,000 leading organizations across multiple industries use Cognos. Some examples of Cognos customers include BMW Financial Services, Quinte Health Care, Troy Corporation, Michigan State University, and GKN Land System.
    SRAM, Kennametal, Fairfax Water, British American Tobacco, Velux, and FedEx.
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm12%
    Computer Software Company11%
    Insurance Company10%
    Healthcare Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Financial Services Firm12%
    Government7%
    REVIEWERS
    Manufacturing Company20%
    Healthcare Company12%
    Energy/Utilities Company8%
    Government6%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company23%
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Financial Services Firm10%
    Government8%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business25%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise59%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business16%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise69%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business29%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise55%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business15%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise71%
    Buyer's Guide
    IBM Cognos vs. SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform
    July 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about IBM Cognos vs. SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform and other solutions. Updated: July 2022.
    622,358 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    IBM Cognos is ranked 5th in BI (Business Intelligence) Tools with 20 reviews while SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is ranked 3rd in BI (Business Intelligence) Tools with 34 reviews. IBM Cognos is rated 8.2, while SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is rated 7.8. The top reviewer of IBM Cognos writes "Helpful online community, highly reliable, and secure". On the other hand, the top reviewer of SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform writes "Integrates very well with SAP ERP, allows you to scale up or down anytime, and is absolutely trustworthy". IBM Cognos is most compared with Microsoft BI, Tableau, Qlik Sense, MicroStrategy and Oracle Hyperion, whereas SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is most compared with Microsoft BI, SAP Analytics Cloud, Oracle OBIEE, MicroStrategy and Oracle Essbase. See our IBM Cognos vs. SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform report.

    See our list of best BI (Business Intelligence) Tools vendors and best Legacy BI Tools vendors.

    We monitor all BI (Business Intelligence) Tools reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.