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Simplifying Planning for Free

Cognos offers “Plan-to-Perform Blueprints” to users.

QuickTake

Cognos is making its “Plan-to-Perform Blueprints” available free of charge to users of its Enterprise Planning application. The Blueprints are templates that incorporate a comprehensive set of best practices in areas such as expense planning and control, headcount and compensation, capital spending and sales planning and forecasting. Organizations can customize the basic templates to suit their requirements, adding or removing detail as necessary. Cognos developed the Plan-to-Perform series after finding that while all companies start using Enterprise Planning for finance (e.g., expense budgeting), two-thirds of its customers have extended the use of their software to operational planning functions, capital spending, and the like. The blueprints have been built to integrate with Cognos’ reporting applications, so organizations with a full set of Cognos products can generate canned or ad hoc reports, create dashboards, and so forth. Ventana Research strongly recommends all companies that have Enterprise Planning try out the Blueprints. It is an easy way to obtain greater value from your investment by making it easier to broaden the scope of planning activities. It also can be useful in finding ways to enhance existing planning models, or to use the Blueprints to replace existing models. We also advise companies evaluating planning and budgeting software to consider the value of the Blueprints in your product assessments, because they can significantly reduce the cost of creating your own budget models and speed implementation.