PowerCenter outpowers the cloud version
March 07, 2019
PowerCenter outpowers the cloud version
Score 9 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with PowerCenter
We use PowerCenter throughout the organization, under a centralized IT implementation with a decentralized (or divisional) user base. It has been our mainstay and go-to ETL tool for many years. From SAP to Oracle to SQL, it lets us connect to just about anything in order to pipe data out into different repositories. Mainly it feeds our various data warehouse and data marts, but we also use it to extract data from our old CRM system into our Salesforce transition.
- The number of connectors, and the coverage for all the possibilities, are excellent, giving us the comfort that we won’t have to build anything custom.
- The flow visualizations are very nice, as we often have to go in and forensically review work done by others who are no longer with the company. This helps us accurately identify source data.
- The alert system is a great feature I think is often underutilized. We’ve been able to set up a great communication tree of notifications when a job fails, saving our DBA’s a lot of time sending out emergency communications.
- The pricing on the connectors is inflated, in my opinion. Plus, the fact you have to pay for them twice if you also utilize IICS (Informatica Cloud). I think you should only have to pay once, regardless of what platform from the vendor you are using. This is a big Con for me, as a manager that has to budget for these things.
- It requires more in-depth training than some of the other ETL tools we use, including Informatica Cloud. With Cloud, you can guess and be right 99% of the time. With PowerCenter, you need a few weeks of training, and then still have to ask an expert.
- Setting up secure agents is always difficult, but I’ve seen it done better with other tools like MULE. With Informatica, you tend to need 12 people in a room from all over the business to troubleshoot why the connection is not working.
- Overall, though it can be quite expensive, we’ve gained a lot of positives in both ROI and customer satisfaction with this tool. With the current set-up in a very large company, we can manage the implementation with a single admin and 2 DBA’s, supporting 50+ power users.
- Any time you can free up trapped data and get it into a functional container for downstream tools, it is a win. PowerCenter lets us do this and a lot more.
- I think they should give up on the cloud version and stick to PowerCenter as their main offering. The features are just not there on the cloud, and PowerCenter is very robust.
- I do not care for their customer service. Their first response is always that it's not their fault, so they cannot help. Lots of opportunities to improve there.
PowerCenter is simply so robust and refined that most other apps cannot do as much as it can. Even Informatica’s own Cloud version is so anemic as to not even compare against it. While from that perspective it feels bloated with too much to navigate through, many of those features eventually come in handy, so you might as well go big with PowerCenter and invest in training and pay decent salaries to keep your turnover low and your productivity high.
PowerCenter is robust and fast, and it does a great job meeting all the needs, not just the most commercially vocal needs. In the hands of an expert power user, you can accomplish almost anything with your data. It is not for new users or intermittent users-- for that the Cloud version is a better fit. Be prepared for costly connectors (priced differently for each source or destination you are working with), and just be planful of your projects so you are not paying for connectors you no longer need or want.
The tool is very flexible and will meet most, if not all, of your data transformation needs. It is an expert-level tool, so building your knowledge-base and user-base (and keeping that base healthy!) is very important. But it will pay off with strong data management and the ability to leverage that data in ways you haven’t thought of yet. Bottom line, data is money, and PowerCenter helps you monetize your data.
I think anything where you need to shuttle data in/out of one complex system and into another is a great fit for PowerCenter (on prem). The “Upsert” function of updating and inserting has saved us countless dollars in storage space and the in/out transfer of data to the cloud, so if you are pulling data out of your on-prem systems and moving it to the cloud, this is the tool for you. Coupled with a good Data Warehouse or Data Lake strategy, you can be ELT instead of ETL, as well. Makes feeding your BI Tools fast and easy.