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IS&T Financial Reporting – Cognos Spending Plan Input – Cost Object Level Template

The Spending Plan Template is the initial report run in the Spending Plan process. This report is to be run and downloaded into Excel. It contains the actuals for closed months and the spending plans for future months.

Open your browser to the IBM Cognos portal

  1. Go to Cognos Content > Public Folders > School & Area Reports > IS&T > Financial Reporting >.
  2. Select IS&T Spending Plan Input - Cost Object level Template [This link takes you directly to the Cognos report.]
  3. The report pauses, waiting for you to enter information at the following prompts.
    Select FISCAL YEAR and Cost Objects for report
  • You will see a report like the following with a Budget column for current and future months, Actuals for months that are closed. In addition, the report displays a column for Future Spending Plan, FY Budget, FY Spending Plan and FY Variance.
  • The report is paginated by the Cost Collector ID. If multiple Cost Collector IDs are chosen, users must select the page down link at the bottom left of the page to view the next Cost Collector ID.
  • You will also see that the Salaries, Benefits, Depreciation and Interest Expense rows are highlighted in yellow. These rows will be maintained by the Finance Team. Users are not expected to update these rows.
    Sample Cost Object Level Template report
    • Actuals - The amount of money that was paid to acquire a product or asset.
    • Budget - The amount of money available for spending.
    • Variance - Variances are the differences between budgeted amounts and the actual revenue or expenses.
    • Spending Plan - Shows how we plan to allocate our budgets for an upcoming period of time. It is the process of making financial predictions for a future period of time based on past and present data analysis. Typically, a spending plan is based upon specific assumptions.
    • Future Spending Plan - The sum of the monthly spending plans for all non-closed months.
    • FY Budget - Total Funding Available.
    • FY Spending Plan - YTD Actuals + Future Spending Plan amounts.
    • FY Variance columns - The variance between the FY Budget and the FY Spending Plan.

This is an example of how the report looks later in the Fiscal Year:
Cost Object Level report later in Fiscal Year

Download the report to Excel.

  1. Select the HTML icon and from the menu choose View in Excel Options and then View in Excel 2007 Format. Each Cost Collector ID will be placed in a single tab.
    View in Excel 2007 format option
  2. Confirm Open with Microsoft Excel (default) or Save file.
    • If the report doesn't download or doesn't readily open, you may have to shut down your copy of the Excel application, if open.
    • The file is downloaded to your default location.
  3. Open downloaded Excel file
    • The Cognos report is downloaded into Excel preserving the columns and rows and headings.
  4. Update the template
    • In the columns given, enter your projected spending by Cost Collector Id and Category. You can also validate the other data on the report.
  5. Upload completed template to Dropbox
    • When you have completed the spreadsheet, save it and then move it to the appropriate folder in Dropbox.


If you choose to print a report, always print to PDF before printing paper copies to ensure that the report format is preserved.

What if I have questions about the data in the report?

Please contact the Finance Team if you have any questions about the data in the report. For example, actuals may vary depending on when the report is run. The totals returned for the current month actuals only reflect those payments that were made before the closing of the previous month. In many cases, payments are not applied until future months.

IS&T Contributions

Documentation and information provided by IS&T staff members

Last Modified:

October 21, 2016

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