Note: It is no longer necessary to follow these steps as the Cognos team has implemented many updates in order to address this and other issues. See the official documentation here.

It’s not as simple as you would think.

This article assumes that you have a basic working knowledge of Cognos Embedded Dashboards. If you are not familiar or would like to learn more, check out the documentation.

It turns out there is not a simple way to display a percentage in Cognos Embedded Dashboards, depending on the type of data you have. Here are the directions for taking a string from your .csv file and displaying it as a percentage on your dashboard.

Step 1

Click and drag the field you want to display from the left to the dashboard and change the display type to Summary. Click the ellipses beside coverage in the display and click Calculation.

Step 2

The calculation editor will open. In that window, paste the following:

_round ( cast(Morgantown_KeyMetrics_csv.coverage, float), 5)

Replace Morgantown_KeyMetrics_csv.coverage with your file name and field name in the format [file-name].[field-name]. Then click OK This will convert the data from a string to a floating-point number rounded to 5 decimal places. When you create a calculation on a certain field, it will actually create a new data field from the calculation you created. For instance, consider if I have a data field named total that equals 34, then I apply a calculation on it… something like total / 2. This new data field will be either given an automatic name or I can name it in the calculation editor field. In this case, let’s say I am naming this new field total2. Once I save the calculation, the new field, total2, will be saved in the left data pane for me to drag and drop onto the dashboard as total2.

Step 3

From here, click the ellipses beside coverage in the widget and click Remove. Then click the newly-created coverage + field on the left side in the data pane and drag to where you just deleted the coverage field from the widget (next to the #).

Note: Your new field may be named something other than coverage +.

Step 4

Now we want to format our decimal as an actual percentage. Click the ellipses then click Calculation.

Step 5

Click the % in the middle dropdown in the second row. Then in the far-right field type 100. Click OK. This will convert your number to a percentage. You can give this field a custom name if you want by changing the Column name text. By default, my field will be named coverage + % 100.

Step 6

This will create yet another new field in the left pane (mine is named coverage + % 100). Remove the coverage % field from the graphic by clicking the ellipses and clicking Remove. Then drag the newly-created coverage + % 100 field (or whatever you named it) to the graphic beside the # symbol.

Step 7

To show your field as a percentage, click the ellipses beside the field name in the widget. Select “Format” then click the appropriate display format.

Step 8 (Optional - if needed)

In some cases, your decimal may be off by a factor off 100. To rectify this, click the ellipses beside your field name and select “Edit calculation.” You can then simply add * 100 to the end of the equation to move the decimal place to the appropriate position.

Step 9

If you would like to change the field name for your newly-created field, click the ellipses beside the field name in the data pane and select “Properties.”

Step 10

You can change the label for your data field here. As you can see, I have named mine “Coverage.” Type in your preferred name in the Label field then click “Close.”

Step 11

That’s it! Keep in mind that when making calculations on data fields in Cognos Embedded Dashboards the software will create a new field. So you end up creating a new field each step of the way.

I hope this was helpful, and please feel free to reach out if you need any help!

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Morgan Carroll



Morgan Carroll

Senior Cloud Engineer at IBM, Dog Mom, Tinkerer

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