Informatica PowerCenter Review

Safely manages huge data quantities with reliability; enables an excellent data governance strategy

What is our primary use case?

This solution is really the backbone of what we do. Informatica PowerCenter is one of the most used platforms for data governance in the banking and insurance industry. It's quite expensive so it's not used much outside the industry, but it's very reliable and strong in everything connected to data management and data governance strategy. For our industry, that is crucial. We are customers of Informatica and I'm the head of big data and solution architecture. 

What is most valuable?

From my point of view, the solution has two valuable features. It has the ability to manage a huge quantity of data along with a high level of reliability from a performance point of view. Secondly, it has all the tools and features within the platform to establish a real data governance strategy. That includes lineage data preparation, ETL, ELP, everything regarding monitoring and processes that are implemented in the platform. It's quite feature full in that regard.

What needs improvement?

The solution currently requires quite an established data center in place because there is no option for software as a service so the best option to install the platform is on-prem. I know Informatica is thinking about it because they are introducing a brand new platform for big data management, but it doesn't yet have the same level of features as PowerCenter. This is something they can improve on. There are some significant differences between the two platforms.

The other issue is price. I understand this is a high-level professional tool designed for big companies that have a great need for managing huge amounts of data and I understand these kinds of tools are quite expensive, but sometimes the cost is too high. Their focus is obviously a high-level market but I think there would be other companies who would want to use it but it's too expensive for them. 

I'd like to see improved on-prem support like Cloudera which is very oriented towards traditional databases, like Oracle, SQL Server and others. 

For how long have I used the solution?

We've been using this solution for five years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is clearly a stable solution, otherwise it would not be used in industries such as banking and insurance. Technically speaking, it's very stable and reliable. In my opinion, it's one of the most stable and reliable platforms for data governance.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is good and a lot has improved over the years. 

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

Most of my customers use solutions in the cloud so I've used Azure in AWS and GCP. There are lots of services, platform services, or software as a service, tools that are used for the same purposes or objectives, like data governance, data preparation, data integration. It's hard to compare because the environment is completely different and they have different issues. PowerCenter is quite a traditional technology. A product like Hadoop, for example, for storage and process management, has the same objectives but they are fulfilled in a completely different way.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is not so easy but once it's been deployed it's quite reliable from a performance point of view.

What other advice do I have?

My advice for this product is to be aware of what's involved and be sure about deploying and using it because it's a very technical tool, something you cannot buy and install in some weird brutal machine. It requires planning and has to be managed, not only in terms of using it, but also economically speaking, because of the cost.

I would rate this solution a nine out of 10. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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