IBM Cognos Launches Blueprint For Financial Planning

IBM Cognos, together with IBM Global Business Services, today launched the Strategic Investment Management Blueprint, with the goal of helping senior finance anticipate performance gaps, revise targets, and manage and fund strategic initiatives in turbulent times.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

December 11, 2008

2 Min Read

IBM Cognos, together with IBM Global Business Services, today launched the Strategic Investment Management Blueprint, with the goal of helping senior finance anticipate performance gaps, revise targets, and manage and fund strategic initiatives in turbulent times.The Strategic Investment Management Blueprint, the latest in a series of more than 40 Blueprints from Cognos, an IBM company, is a predefined analytical model that blends software and services in order to provide CFOs and senior finance executives with the tools needed to improve strategic investment management and decision support.

"Companies of all sizes need to plan for how they're going to achieve their goals for the next two to five years," said Tony Levy, Cognos' director of product marketing, in an interview.

The Blueprint is a performance management accelerator designed to expedite time to value. Some of the capabilities of the Blueprint are:

  • It facilitates integrated business planning over an organization's strategic time horizon.

  • It provides a dynamic dashboard to monitor and assess the gap between targets and forecasts.

    It enables the planning and evaluation of multiple strategic programs and their associated funding initiatives.

    It enables M&A planning and evaluation.

    It facilitates comparison and analysis of what-if scenarios.

    It enables commitment and execution tracking of capital investments linked to strategic programs.

    And it automates the workflow and process management aspect of ensuring the organization stays focused on these strategic programs.

When I asked Levy whether small and midsize companies could get good use out of the Blueprint, he responded: "It comes down to, do they have a pain in financial planning?" Levy explained that CFOs in smaller companies often manage and fund programs by making their decisions through spreadsheets. The more complex the decisions, though, the more the new Blueprint could help, Levy said.

The Strategic Investment Management Blueprint is just the latest release from Cognos -- in October the company released IBM Cognos 8 v4, business intelligence and performance management software that allows users to dictate the data and format they want rather than taking what IT and finance provide.

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