SAS/Enterprise Guide, the Analyst's swiss knife
August 09, 2018

SAS/Enterprise Guide, the Analyst's swiss knife

Mathieu Gaouette | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with SAS Enterprise Guide

SAS Enterprise Guide is used in several business units including marketing, HR, risk (all units). At a high level, it is used for data preparation for analytics developments (models, segmentation, forecasting, ...) and also for ad-hoc queries and data exploration. Being a 4th level programing language, a lot of business users like it. It is somewhat easy and quick to learn. SAS/Enterprise guide brings that ease at the next level with lots of built-in tasks that can be used instead of code.
So in terms of business problems, let's say that SAS/Enterprise Guide is a tool to answer business questions whichever they are.
  • Get detailed information about a datasource quickly with built in statistical tasks.
  • Join data from different of different nature from multiple sources (provided you have the associated SAS/Access component).
  • Structure projects with a visual interface and allow dependencies between them. Easy to structure and maintain.
  • I would like to see advance interactions with external databases to be able to kill ongoing queries from SAS. As of now, you can stop pretty much any ongoing process besides the one running on a remote database (killing SAS/EG doesn't stop the remote process)
  • When creating prompts for programs, it would be nice to be able to have conditional prompts (based on the selection of other prompts). The prompts are clearly a recent feature and constantly under development but I wish it would be more powerful.
  • More of a SAS metadata issue but when loading SAS/EG (first connection to the server), it takes a few seconds which feels like a long time. I really don't understand why the initialization of the session can take so long. Don't get me wrong, this has no real impact on productivity but that 10s delay just feels really like eternity when you want to run some code in a new session.
  • Positive (cost): SAS made a bundle that include unlimited usage of SAS/Enterprise Guide with a server solution. That by itself made the company save a lot of money by not having to pay individual licences anymore.
  • Positive (insight): Data analysts in business units often need to crunch data and they don't have access to ETL tools to do it. Having access to SAS/EG gives them that power.
  • Positive (time to market): Having the users develop components with SAS/EG allows for easier integration in a production environment (SAS batch job) as no code rework is required.
I haven't used SPSS myself but from what I was told, integration of data was much more limited and not easy to used.
Also, the number of people with SPSS knowledge is less than the number of SAS users so finding workforce can be an issue.
The whole SAS solution just made much more sense (more integrated, easier to work with, easier to find people to work with it).
SAS/Enterprise Guide is a great tool to give to an analyst in a company. I call it the swiss knife of analytics. It allows lots of functionalities from the integration of data and transformation to predictive modeling (if you have the Stat module).
I recommend it for ad-hoc data querying and manipulations.
For ETL processes, I suggest going with a proper ETL software that has data tracability.
As for reporting, it will work just fine but don't expect the same levels of customizations and "wow" as reporting softwares such as Tableau.