IBM Workload Automation Review

The simplicity of the GUI is the most valuable feature for us.

What is most valuable?

The simplicity of the GUI is the most valuable feature for us.

How has it helped my organization?

My organization has automated a lot of tasks that were previously being done manually like processing of cheques from multiple banks. This was a three step process wherein a dedicated man resource used to scan the cheques individually, another person then updated a record in the database followed by sending out an email.

All these steps required a lot of time and money and any absence of human resources would result in severe lapses. With the help of Tivoli, all the three tasks were automated into a single jobstream that runs throughout the year without any manual intervention, even taking off days and holidays.

What needs improvement?

Out of the box reporting and provision for customization/integration with other products are the areas where this product can be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using the product for six years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have not encountered any significant stability issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not encountered any scalability issues.

How are customer service and technical support?

The support teams at IBM that work with Tivoli Workload Scheduler cases are comprised of people who have tremendous command on troubleshooting issues as well as people who are not that technically capable. So the experience can be good and bad depending on the engineer that you end up coordinating with. I would say overall, the support for this product is above average.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have been consistently using Tivoli Workload Scheduler as a one stop solution for my various client's job scheduling and automation needs, so I am not aware of any previous solutions.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is not very easy as IBM has multiple components integrated with the core product which are mandatory to setup and can be a bit tricky.

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

This would be one the expensive lines of product in IBM's portfolio, so initial costs can run high if someone is buying it for the first time. The licensing is IBM proprietary, and clients are not charged on the basis of underlying hardware configuration that hosts the installed application - CPU cores and manufacturer to be exact - which goes up as you add on to your processing capabilities.

Over a period, once you are a client, you may get better pricing quotes from your sales representative. Also, there are workload based flexible pricing options available for smaller setups which can always be considered and negotiated accordingly.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

The alternatives in this category of products are not many. BMC Control-M and CA Autosys and another job scheduler from Tidal are the major ones. I have evaluated BMC and CA, both are equally capable and perform wonderfully well, the one advantage IBM has over its counterparts is its capabilities with mainframe scheduling for a very long time. Most old companies have had mainframes for 2-3 decades now and IBM integrates seamlessly across their legacy mainframe as well as the newer distributed setups.

What other advice do I have?

It's a very good scheduling product if you have a combination of mainframe and distributed environments that have batch operations and repetitive tasks running on them. The SAP plugin is outstanding and SAP process chains run a like a dream when scheduled using Tivoli.

If you have an environment like the one I've just mentioned, this would unarguably be your best bet. The initial costs are steep but it pays off in the longer run as the product itself is very stable if configured correctly.

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
More IBM Workload Automation reviews from users
...who work at a Financial Services Firm
...who compared it with Control-M
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