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Capitalize Analytics Blog

On Demand (Recorded) Webinar: Data Analytics in Healthcare: From Self-Service Analytics to Predicting Patient Outcomes

Recorded, Wednesday, January 31 @ 12pm CT

Healthcare institutions have been collecting clinical and non-clinical data for decades. Data has become a strategic resource that is notoriously underutilized. It is time to release the power of this data! Data-driven decisions enable healthcare decision makers to improve patient outcomes, patient satisfaction, and other VBC-based measures.

In this interactive webinar with Capitalize Analytics and IBM we will:

  • Explain how IBM Analytic solutions can help you analyze and visualize the massive amounts of data collected by healthcare institutions.
  • Demo these technology solutions to show examples of how it may be used at your institution.
  • Share the methodologies we employ to help healthcare institutions become more data-driven.

Please listen to our webinar and let us show you how to LIBERATE YOUR DATA!

Watch Now

Alteryx Key Components

Another installment of our educational blog series is here! If you have suggestions for future blog topics, we want to hear them. Email us at marketing@capitalizeconsulting.com with your ideas!

Alteryx Key Components

We recently had the opportunity to provide an Alteryx demo to a large oil & gas company. The demo was focused on the ease of use of Alteryx while also showing many of the key components of the software.  This was coupled with an industry-specific example and a demonstration of predictive analytics.

In this first Alteryx example, we are looking at two sets of data – one that contains well information with production values, and another that contains well location. We will create a workflow that compares wells with their neighboring infill wells and provides us with specific details on each.

Input and Preparation of Data: An Excel file is brought into Alteryx using the data import tool, then a Select tool is added to determine the correct data types of the file. Next, a Data Cleanse tool is used to remove any nulls and prepare the data for the next steps.

Creation of running-total and Start Dates: The prepared data now takes two paths before eventually being joined back together using a join tool. The first path (top) sorts the data by API number and production date, then uses a Running-Total tool to create a new column, tracking the well output over time. The second path (bottom) uses a Summarize tool to find the minimum production date for each well. The data is then rejoined.

Filtering for date range and creating cumulative totals: The next step involves filtering the current set of data to only contain records within 6 months of the well start date. This displays the built-in functions of Alteryx. The data is then put through a Summarization tool again to pull the maximum value, thereby providing us with the 6-month cumulative amounts.

Joining of well location data: Next, the file containing the well information is introduced to the workflow. This is joined to the existing workflow by the well API number. This allows the demonstration of multiple data types being used together.

Addition of geo-spatial tools: The newly joined latitude and longitude information will be used to create a map. The first tool used is a Create Points tool, which grabs the coordinates and plots them relative to one another. The next tool, Find Nearest tool, allows the points to be related to the nearest four wells within a kilometer. This data will now contain individual data and universal data that can again be summarized.

Categorize the results, create a production delta, and output results: The next step uses another formula to bin the results into a well type category (infill or parent), based on the start data versus the universal start date. The Formula tool is also used to create a field that calculates the difference between a well’s values and the universal values. At this point, the data can be summarized again to see the difference of average performance between infill and parent wells. The data can also be output at this time to just about any file format, and distributed via your preferred reporting and Business Intelligence platform.

At this point, the output data was shown as a visualization that captivates the audience.

The next examples are focused on the predictive analytics capabilities of Alteryx. The active report tabs were also demonstrated live.

Linear Regression: This example used an Excel sheet of actual prices and a series of four indices. The Linear Regression tool is used to show how well each index did in predicting the actual price. The Report and Interactive tabs were explored.

K-Means Clustering: This example used a series of contracts with flags determining their attributes. The tool was used to create clusters of contracts by similar attributes, as well as ranking these clusters by profitability.

Prompting Best Practices: To require or not to require, that is the question.

The 2nd installment of our educational blog series is here!
If you have suggestions for future blog topics, we want to hear them!
Email us at marketing@capitalizeconsulting.com with your ideas!

Updating reports can have its challenges. Sometimes, everything goes according to plan; other times, you are left scratching your head. We recently came across an interesting error while updating a report from a Cognos 10.2 to Cognos Analytics (11) related to prompting and whether a prompt is treated as required or optional.

First, a little background: In any version of Cognos, it is important to understand how prompting works across the report. Several pieces play key roles:

  • Prompt object: The physical object placed on the page, to allow users to make a selection
  • Parameter: The variable or placeholder that stores the selected value
  • Parameterized Filter: The filter that puts the stored parameter to use
    • Can be set to “single-select” or “multi-select” (using =/in)
    • Usage can be set to “required”, “optional”, or “disabled”

The optional usage of the filter allows for a prompt where a user can make a selection, or simply pass by. If the prompt is not used, the filter will be ignored. This has the same effect as selecting all values. One benefit to this method is that a user has fewer clicks on the prompt page, as there is no need to ‘select all’ on each prompt as they navigate. Another, often overlooked advantage is that the background SQL that is generated by the report is actually shorter and more efficient if the prompt is set up as “optional” instead of “select all”.

The setup of an optional prompt in Cognos 10 requires that the parameterized filter associated with a prompt be optional and that the prompt object itself has the property ‘Required’ set to ‘No’. If the filter is required, the prompt object still requires a user to provide a value, even if the prompt object itself is not set to be required. This works conversely as well, meaning that the prompt and the prompt object need to be in sync in order for the “optional” ability to be available.

A Properties pane for a parameterized filter in Cognos 10 (set to “Optional”):

A Properties pane for a prompt object in Cognos 10 (set to “Required: No”):

Note: if the filter is set to “Required,” even with the prompt object set to “Required: No”, the prompt page still requires a value:

The orange asterisk (adornment) denotes a required field:

Here is where the issue arises. In Cognos Analytics (11), a prompt page will allow a user to pass over the prompt object if it is not set to required, even if the associated filter is required. This will result in a text child error for the report. The error can be especially difficult to address, as there is little information provided by the error message, and the report’s individual queries will all work, producing no errors.

Making the issue even more elusive, the prompt page requires the prompts to be answered if run from an open Report Studio instance. This means that only when the report is run from Cognos Connection, will the prompts set to ‘Required: No’ incorrectly allow you to pass no values into a required filter.

A detail filter pain in Cognos Analytics (11) where the filters are set to “Required”:

A prompt object in Cognos Analytics (11) where the Required property is set to “No”:

Results if run from Report Studio in Cognos Analytics. Note the required adornment:

Here is the same report run from Cognos Connection. Note that there is no required adornment, and a user can advance without making a selection, even with the filter set to “Required”:

This is the resulting error:

The solution: A user must keep their filters and prompt objects in sync; either they are both optional, or they are both required. A user cannot rely on the redundancy failsafe that was in Cognos 10. It’s a simple idea once understood, but quite elusive for troubleshooting. Let’s put this in our back pocket and continue to expand our library of tips and tricks.

If you have questions or need additional assistance, please contact us at marketing@capitalizeconsulting.com

Cognos Tutorial: How to Add a Second Line Per Record for Long Fields Using Grouping and Footers

We’re excited to add an educational component to our blog! Our consultants are great informational resources, and we want to share their knowledge with you, our subscribers. We’ll update our blog regularly with various educational posts written by our Business Intelligence team. We hope you find them to be informative and useful.

If you have suggestions for future blog topics, we want to hear them! Email us at marketing@capitalizeconsulting.com with your ideas!


IBM Cognos Tutorial

Cognos Tutorial:  How to Add a Second Line Per Record for Long Fields Using Grouping and Footers

For certain longer fields, such as addresses, notes, and comments, you want to format a second line per record.   This tutorial shows you how to create a second line using Grouping and Footers.

Create a List Report and include the Long Field in the List.  In this case, the Long Field will be the Retailer Site Address.

Here is the Current Report Output:


Select Retailer Site Address and click the Group/Ungroup button to Group the list by Retailer Site Address.

Select down arrow next to the Headers & Footers button and select “Create Footer”.

Here is the newly added Footer for Retail Site Address:

The Retailer Site Address Field is not needed anymore.  Select the Retailer Site Address Column and cut it from the list, leaving only the Retailer Site Address Footer.

Select the Retailer Site Address Footer and format it so it matches the rest of the list report.

Let’s add a Text Item before the Retailer Site Address so we know what the field is.  Unlock the Report.

Drag over a Text Item in front of the Retailer Site Address Field.

Type in “Site Address:” and click OK.

Bold the Text Item and Relock the Report.

Add a Border under the Footer to separate the records from each other.

Run the Report and see your new two lines per record List Report.

If you have questions or need additional assistance, please contact us at marketing@capitalizeconsulting.com

Upcoming Live Webinar! What’s New in Cognos 11! Attention eSchoolPLUS and eFinancePLUS Users!

What’s New in Cognos 11!

Attention eSchoolPLUS and eFinancePLUS Users!

Monday, October 30, 2017

12:00 – 1:00 pm CDT

Come see what’s new in Cognos 11 and why you should upgrade sooner rather than later.

There are many exciting differences. To name a few…

• Redesigned and modern user interface
• Updated interactive viewer that allows users to sort, filter, group and total without the need for authoring capability
• Ability to create incredibly interactive dashboards and “stories”
• Many new visualizations and mapping enhancements

Watch now

Upcoming Live Webinar! The Chromebook Tracking Solution!

Thursday, November 16th, 2017 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM CDT

Chromebooks in school districts can be amazing assets, but tracking them can be a challenge!
You may think that there is an audit log that tracks usage…and you’re partially right. It will tell you what Chromebooks were accessed. But what doesn’t it tell you?
• When are Chromebooks being used?
• Who’s using them, when, and how often?
• Which Chromebooks aren’t being used much?
• What websites/apps are being accessed, by whom, and when?
• Is anything dangerous or risky happening on your Chromebooks? Who’s doing it and when?

And let’s think about some higher value questions:
1) Which schools and classes are using Chromebooks most?
2) Which teachers use Chromebooks most?
3) How do the test scores of classes with heavy Chromebook use often compare to those who don’t use them?
4) Are Chromebooks an effective tool worth the cost of purchasing and supporting them?

Capitalize Analytics has developed a way to track your Chromebook usage far beyond what the Google log files can currently show. We track every user, who accesses every URL, every click, on which Chromebook, and when. We join that data with your student information system so you know which locations, classes, teachers, and programs are using Chromebooks effectively.

If your district has hundreds or thousands of Chromebooks, you need to be answering these questions!
Let us show you how you can quickly gain insights from your Chromebooks!

Watch now

On Demand (recorded) Webinar! – Breaking Through the K12 Data Silos

This webinar was held on Wed, September 13th, 2017 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM CDT

All this data and all the movement IS overwhelming!
• How can we get data into our systems?
• How do we provide data to other systems?
• How do we blend data together from multiple systems?

In most cases the answer is…manually using excel!

In this webinar, we’ll show you THREE WAYS WE CAN MAKE YOUR LIFE EASIER:

1) We’ll pull student information and assessment information together so we can analyze or share that data with others.
2) We will show you an HR/Payroll example demonstrating how we quickly load dozens of new job codes to hundreds of staff.
3) We will show you how we automate the process of getting data out of the SIS and into a file that can be loaded by the state or another vendor.

Alteryx gives you an incredibly simple way to source, blend, prep, and share information. Whether you want to prepare data for the data visualization “tool du jour” or you need to move data between systems, Alteryx can help!

Spend one hour with us and you’ll walk away with strategies to simplify the data challenges at your district!

Watch now

On Demand (recorded) Webinar – BusinessPLUS Webinar | See the combined power of BusinessPLUS with Cognos

Many BusinessPLUS customers have been asking for a way to more easily access and share information from HR, Payroll, GL, etc. Our partnership with IBM gives you access to the most powerful reporting and analytics tools available for a fraction of the retail cost.
During this webinar, we review exactly how Cognos works with BusinessPLUS. Some of the highlights are:
• Easily access data from BusinessPLUS to create reports and dashboards.
• Combine data from any source with what you have in BusinessPLUS
• Quickly distribute reports to large audiences with the click of a button.
• See how reports you build can be utilized on dashboards, mobile devices, and within Microsoft Office.
This webinar shows how you can get Cognos up and running at your district NOW. Including:
• Licenses and Installation
• Training – Get your team up to speed quickly.
• Mentoring – We’ll work together on the first couple requests.
• Analyst on Demand – If you get stuck…give us a call!
It also includes a guest speaker, Jennifer Mancuso, Programmer/Analyst, from Columbia Public Schools.
Cognos will change the way you access and engage with BusinessPLUS.

Watch now

On Demand (recorded) Webinar – Cognos for eSchoolPLUS and eFinancePLUS

Cognos for eSchoolPLUS and eFinancePLUS

Capitalize and PowerSchool hosted this webinar August 9th, 2017.

This webinar highlights how using eFinancePLUS and eSchoolPLUS with Cognos empowers district employees to more easily access and share relevant financial and HR data.

The combined power of eFinancePLUS and eSchoolPLUS also helps district leaders make strategic decisions quickly.

Watch now

Upcoming Live Webinar – Use IBM Cognos Event Studio to notify you about ANYTHING!

Use IBM Cognos Event Studio to notify you about ANYTHING! (Live Webinar) 

Wed, August 30th, 2017 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM CST 

With data coming in from every direction, sometimes the biggest challenge is knowing WHAT to pay attention to! You may have hundreds of reports, dashboards, etc. available but which one should you look at today? With IBM Cognos Event Studio, you can easily set up alerts to notify you that something has happened. This works across every system you have!

Examples we’ve seen: 
“Alert me if any project is within 90% of budget.”
“Alert the store manager if inventory drops below X.”
“Alert the contract administrator if a contract is set to expire within 90 days.”
“Alert me if a new order is placed.” 
“Run a database job to delete access if a user is removed from Active Directory.” 
“Call a web service to add a user to a system if we have a new hire.” 

Let us show you how you can use IBM Cognos Analytics to be alerted about ANYTHING that happens within your systems!!