Understanding navigation in Cognos Analytics

The goal of the new user interface, navigation panel and menu is to provide you with a streamlined way to view content and activities pertinent to you. Logging in at https://reporting.northwestern.edu will take you to the Cognos Analytics welcome page.



The majority of the interface is dedicated to the Canvas, where you will interact with your data. You may select a saved dashboard or report to render on this home page.

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The default view of the homepage displays the tiles representing your most recently modified content. The most recent six (6) are presented.


Quick Reference

Within the Quick Reference you will find resources to help you get started in Cognos Analytics, including videos, sample data sets and link to the IBM Data and AI Accelerators Catalog website.



Directs your to the dedicated Cognos Analytics community directly from the new UI. The community provides forums where you can consult with peers and technical experts as well as find resources, videos, and news. Click Support under Quick Reference, then on Community. A new browser tab will open. Scroll through the page to see the various resources available.

On the left side of the UI is the main Navigation bar. This is present on the UI at all times and updates dynamically as you work with the various capabilities within Cognos Analytics. The upper part of the bar provides you with direct access to search for their content, and links to content to which they have access. The bottom portion of the bar provides you with one-click access to capabilities to create and manage new activities such as creating new content, uploading personal data files, and managing the environment (dependent on User permissions).

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The Home button appears in the top-left corner of the navigation panel. You can return to this homepage at any time by clicking this button.



The new smart Search provides a modernized search engine that uses a smart, intent-driven search algorithm to assist you. Click Search to open the search panel. Type GL008 in the search dialog box. As you type, an auto-fill feature will launch and render search suggestions for related terms. Click outside the Search panel to close it.


My Content

The My Content folder provides you with direct access to the content you've saved. This is content owned by you and may only be viewed by you. Click on My Content to open the navigation panel to see if there is any user content in your environment. Click outside the My Content panel to close it.


Team Content

Team Content folder contains all the published enterprise and shared content that you have permissions to view. Click Team Content to open the navigation panel. Notice there is a list of folders. Click outside the Team Content panel to close it.



The Recent button shows you the most recently used list of content, up to 20 objects (reports, dashboards, data modules, etc.). Objects appear in order based on most recently used. Once an object is viewed, it will move to the top of the list. Click Recent to see what, if any, are the most recently used objects in your environment. Hover your mouse over the icon to the left of each object to identify the type of object. Click outside the Recent panel to close it.



Northwestern Resources provides the links to various helpful videos and job aids (Knowledge Base (KB) articles).



The New button is used to create new content. It is intent-driven, meaning that it allows you to select what type of content you want to create, and Cognos Analytics will open the associated capabilities in the canvas. From here, you can create new reports, dashboards, stories, data modules, access other companion applications like Analysis Studio, Query Studio and WorkSpace.

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Switcher Menu

The switcher menu in the center of the application toolbar provides a drop down button that allows you to easily move between the different objects you've worked with during your current session, without opening additional browser windows. The Switcher menu will display the name of the object currently active in the canvas.



The More button provides you with options to customize your user wxperience. The options presented dynamically update based on the type of object open in the canvas. Click outside the More menu to close it.



You can subscribe to Cognos Analytics content and receive notifications when that content has been updated and is ready for review. An indicator is provided to notify you with the number of new notifications. Click the Notifications button to open a listing of all unread notifications.


Personal Menu

The Personal Menu allows you to change personal preferences for their environment and to manage you subscriptions. Click the Personal Menu to see the capabilities available. Click outside the Personal Menu to close it.

From the Personal Menu users can access the following

  • Settings related to you as the user.
  • Preference settings (See section below for details)
  • User's Schedule and Subscription Management UI.
  • Sign Out option.

Visit Creating Report Schedules in Cognos Analytics for detailed walk through

Visit Subscribing to reports in Cognos Analytics for detailed walk through




  1. Click on the Person Icon located on the Application Bar and select My preferences.
  2. Users can turn hints on or off on the main portal page and within the authoring tool my checking or unchecking the Show hints.
  3. Select the Personal tab.
  4. Click on the Advanced to open additional options.
  5. It is advisable to Click the Renew credentials after password changes as a step to troubleshooting schedules that has started to fail.

See Also:

For additional assistance please contact the IT Support Center at 847-491-4357 (1-HELP) option 7, or consultant@northwestern.edu.

Keywords:"Home Page"Portal "Welcome Page" Report BI ERA "Business Intelligence" Reporting   Doc ID:80165
Owner:Data Management & Analytics (DMA) .Group:Northwestern
Created:2018-02-15 15:49 CDTUpdated:2021-01-16 10:34 CDT
Feedback:  3   0