ActiveBatch Workload Automation Review

Good support and the scheduling works well


What is our primary use case?

I am the administrator handling all of the ActiveBatch-related activities. It is used for all of our processes, scheduling, and basically all of the automation.

What is most valuable?

The schedule is good because you don't miss any issues. Let's say you reboot the server and there are still things pending, they will resume. From a scheduling point of view, it is pretty good.

What needs improvement?

The reporting needs to be made easier, such as by including a dashboard. As it is now, I have to go to each and every folder in order to see the reports. If I had a higher-level view, such as Tableau-based reporting, then it would be very useful. Right now, it is built-in with the existing GUI and it is very limited. If they were to detach that and provide the data with a template report then that would be the best way to go.

The interface is not that user-friendly and is a little tough to navigate.

In the future, I would like to see support for mobile alerts so that we don't have to log in to find out whether there is a problem.

I would also like to see more support for cloud-based environments. For example, we might want our workflow to include Snowflake from Amazon. So far, all of our work is on our on-premises servers, whether it is moving a file or running a database. We are now extending out and would like to use ActiveBatch to bring in more controls. Examples include using Snowflake or Redshift in my workflow. That would be very helpful.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using ActiveBatch for approximately 13 years, since 2007.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Overall, it is quite stable. Over the years, we have had very few issues with stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Our company is small, with perhaps seven or eight people using ActiveBatch. We have hundreds of jobs running and we haven't had any problems. The scheduler continues to do its job.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is pretty good.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was very straightforward and never gave me a problem.

What about the implementation team?

The setup and maintenance are done in-house. We have overnight support group from India and they manage the nightly processes using ActiveBatch.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We are currently paying a yearly fee, although they are greatly increasing their prices and changing to a subscription-based model. Currently, we are paying approximately $7,000 yearly, which includes support.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Before choosing ActiveBatch, we looked at a couple of products and run a pilot with Control-M. 

What other advice do I have?

We look at different products and this is definitely a very good one. I do not have much familiarity with the cloud-based solutions but on a Windows platform, this one is pretty good.

Overall, this is a good product but there are a lot of improvements that can be made to the interface to make it more user-friendly. Also, if I were rating the reporting then I would only score it a six and a half. Finally, we do need a solution that can reach out to cloud environments.

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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author avatarNick Sainato (Advanced Systems Concepts)
Vendor

Hi there! Thank you for being such a longtime user and continued supporter of ActiveBatch. We appreciate the detailed review and wanted to take the opportunity to respond to some of your comments regarding areas of product improvement. I’m happy to share that we can achieve many of the use cases you’ve mentioned within Version 12 of ActiveBatch.

First, V12 makes major improvements to our reporting facilities, refreshing our Reporting Services to become the new Instance Reporting facility, and creating a brand new reporting facility for Template Reports. This allows you to extensively report on all objects system-wide on a variety of properties and data points. What’s more, this facility operates through a pre-created ETL job that will automatically deposit new data into a heavily-documented Template Reporting database on a designated interval. This allows you to use a built-in database reporting service such as SSRS, or allows you to connect to tools like Tableau or Power BI. We include examples in our documentation of popular reports.

V12 also brought an entirely new, high-performance Console that replaces the V11-and-earlier Admin application. This responsive, modern UI has a familiar feel while dramatically improving the user experience. You can do things like tab documents, open multiple views and editors at one time, and tab overarching connections to multiple Job Schedulers. We released a native mobile app for iOS and Android at the same time, meaning you can enable push notifications to approved devices, and monitor the status of your operations from anywhere in the world. You can also respond to alerts by re-triggering failed jobs, re-queueing jobs sitting in a machine bottleneck, and perform object operations like disabling and triggering.

Finally, we’d like to reiterate the powerful abilities of our Service Library and Rest API Adapter, which allows you to connect, without scripting, to any server, service, or application. If our prebuilt Job Steps for Amazon EC2 only solve one piece of your cloud strategy, then you can easily connect to other services like Snowflake in just a few minutes. You can easily turn the resulting methods and functions into your own custom drag-and-drop Job Steps for infinite extensibility.

We hope ActiveBatch continues to be an essential component of your organization’s IT strategy and critical IT operations. Please contact us and we can provide more information, documentation, and training materials on the features above.