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Nassau BOCES hosts first regional 
IBM Cognos Business Intelligence User Group Meeting

Bill Goldband  
Bill Goldband, Chief Administrator of Financial Systems, New York City Department of Education, explains the time-saving capacities of data dashboards in obtaining Medicaid reimbursement for services provided to students with disabilities. Below, Justin Broxton, Business Analytics Specialist, IBM, updates the user group with the latest product developments such as Watson Analytics, which will make it even easier for users to analyze data.
Justin Broxton


Nassau BOCES convened nearly 50 professionals from throughout New York State to share their successes and strategies for using Cognos, IBM’s business intelligence and performance management software suite, during a November 13 conference. The event was the first of its kind for the region, drawing attendees from the New York City Department of Education, Lower Hudson Regional Information Center, the Village of Garden City and the Nassau County Department of Information Technology. Following the success of other Cognos user groups across the globe, the event featured presentations of new and developing technologies by experts from IBM, as well as demonstrations of applications and best practices from the New York City Department of Education and Nassau BOCES.

“We often find ourselves working in a vacuum with a belief that we are unique,” said Cliff Steinberg, Executive Manager, Nassau BOCES Curriculum, Instruction and Technology, as he set the vision for the conference. “In many ways we are, but the focus of these user groups is on the Cognos Platform and tools and techniques to build a layer of operational insight that drives action and risk mitigation where needed.  It is this use of the Cognos Platform that is not unique and gathering users with the same objectives is a way to drive collaboration, learning and overall value.  We are always looking for areas of collaboration where we partner with other organizations.”

“One of our responsibilities is to forecast what is on the horizon and to help our partner school districts prepare. As a BOCES, we are involved with the development of systems and solutions for things such as the analysis of student data and tracking of educationally based operations,” said Dr. Robert J. Hanna, Deputy Superintendent. “Often we find ourselves thinking about challenges that require collaboration and learning from others with similar needs and challenges. We see this as part of our agency’s collaborative mission.”

Nassau BOCES plans to continue offering conferences to provide a space and structure for participating agencies to connect and share experiences, as well as to drive innovation.

“User groups like these garner collaboration, peer review, best practices and networking,” said Lawrence Genova, Senior Manager, Nassau BOCES. “This synergy empowers our creative sides, bringing ideas back to our respective agencies.” For more information about the IBM Cognos User Group at Nassau BOCES, please contact Genova at (516) 832-2811 or email