A high-performance ETL product
Updated April 15, 2016

A high-performance ETL product

Luca Campanelli | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with SQL Server Integration Services

In our department we use SQL Server Integration Services daily. The main use is to do data processing for several ETL processes. Thanks to the use of SQL Server Integration Services we can upload data to the data warehouse in different ways such as a bulk load or with incremental loads thanks to the use of SCD task data.
  • High data load speeds
  • Many data processing modes
  • Many data sources and destinations data possible
  • For some tools you need to integrate third-party packages
  • Depending on the version you must have the right visual studio version to develop and deploy
  • Not really intuitive
  • SSIS is integrated into SQL Server licenses
  • Once developed your packages are very stable and it requires relatively little maintenance
  • If used wisely, it saves a lot of working time
  • DataStage
Among the various ETL products on the market, I only used DataStage. I think that SQL Server Integration Services is much more intuitive than many others and allows for relatively little time to create a viable and very powerful solution. That obviously requires the right training and good experience to create very high-performance tools.
SQL Server Integration Services is optimal for any process of data extraction, data transformation and data loading, and can be used quickly for massive loads. It can be used for scheduled and incremental processes. It is not optimal for data structures that continuously change their structure because in this case it requires continuous changes and deploys.

SSIS Feature Ratings

Connect to traditional data sources
Connecto to Big Data and NoSQL
Simple transformations
Complex transformations
Data model creation
Metadata management
Business rules and workflow
Testing and debugging
Integration with data quality tools
Integration with MDM tools

Using SQL Server Integration Services

4 - In our department of DBAs we use sql server integration services daily. Through the use of Visual Studio and different versioning solutions, we can manage and follow the different ETL tools that we create for various needs in terms of development both in terms of maintenance (in different environments like Online, DWH etc.).
For what our infrastructure is, it does not require external support resources. We can independently manage the product and develop and perform maintenance directly amongst us by sharing our experience and through continuous updates on the latest functionality. On the support application side in case it should be necessary, it is possible to use them directly from MSDN usually provided by Microsoft.
  • Import data from external sources
  • Integration of heterogeneous data
  • Loading the data warehouse
  • Creation of real-time online solutions
  • Packages automation
  • Communications
  • ETL
  • Other data import
  • OLAP & Big Data integrations
Some features should be revised or improved, some tools (using it with Visual Studio) of the toolbox should be less schematic and somewhat more flexible. Using for example, the CSV data import is still very old-fashioned and if the data format changes it requires a bit of manual labor to accept the new data structure.

Evaluating SQL Server Integration Services and Competitors

  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
Working mainly in a Microsoft environment and working for most of the structures on SQL Server environments is definitely recommended. The optimal integration into the existing structure SQL Server Integration Services is included in the Microsoft SQL Server licenses and obviously being fully integrated. Also it is a very professional tool with high performance.
Should I decide personally whether to choose SQL Server integrationServices, I would first estimate any type of data structure and the technologies currently used in the company. I would estimate the different types of skills in the company. Based on my experience I am sure that I would definitely repeat the choice to use SSIS as tool of extraction transformation and loading of data.

SQL Server Integration Services Implementation

The implementation may be different in each case, it is important to properly analyze all the existing infrastructure to understand the kind of work needed, the type of software used and the compatibility between these, the features that you want to exploit, to understand what is possible and which ones require integration with third-party tools.
Change management was a minor issue with the implementation - Start using SQL Server Integration Services does not require a big change organizational management, the important thing is to have defined an initial work plan well structured and clear, especially if you want to start using SSIS as the ETL tool for the population of a DataWarehouse implementation of a new or an existing structure
  • compatibility issues with software versions in use
  • integration of third-party tools
  • verall understanding of the product

SQL Server Integration Services Support

For what is my experience I have rarely needed the Microsoft support, however when it was necessary to have, i always found all the answers on the MSDN, where I have not found an answer I had to read up through forums and sites dedicated to advanced developments of integration services or similar.
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Support understands my problem
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
I've never had need special support on this product if not at the beginning of my experience when I had to attend a training course on using Microsoft SQL Server integration services and sql server analisys services, of course it is advisable to follow the study using the official books .

Using SQL Server Integration Services

in terms of usability, sql server integration services is very schematic and very little dynamic, but for the type of software this schematic is physiological.
When you gain the right technical expertise and once you really know the product usability becomes increasingly fast and simple, the important thing is not to be scared on the first approach.
Like to use
Relatively simple
Well integrated
Feel confident using
  • Bulk load
  • IMport data
  • Data trasformation
  • Manage data sources structurally dynamic
  • integrate complex scripts or .dll
  • control the updating of records without the use of SCD