What is our primary use case?
I am a freelancer in this area. Microsoft Analytics Platform System is a suite of many different products. I have been busy using Microsoft Analytics Platform for the last 10 years and it is not really one single product. There are many different tools and many different technologies used both on cloud and on-premise. It is maybe a hundred products. There is not one single component that I would call Microsoft Analytics Platform System because it is just that: a system.
Because that is the case, it is very difficult to pick one thing as most important or that we use it for most because it is so versatile and serves very different needs for different users. Sometimes a part of the suite is used by just a couple of people and sometimes by a complete team or even groups of teams. It really depends on the situation and the solution the product provides for a given project. No part is the primary part. I could only say that the use case is to work with a unified system to enhance collaboration, analysis, and productivity, and only that.
Personally, I get assignments from companies and I then implement those assignments for those companies. I, myself, do not use those products at all. So I am not going to use more or less of a particular part or service. I go to the assignment and I implement the solution in Microsoft Analytics Platform System for them. I do all kinds of different projects, from small to medium to very big. My personal use case is to do the implementations for projects for those companies.
What is most valuable?
The most valuable part of the product is that it is a system. It has different tools for different services for different kinds of scenarios. It is a very rich tool and an integrated technology-rich platform. The total integration with the rest of Microsoft products is probably the most valuable piece that creates flexibility and compatibility and makes the tool a very useful one.
What needs improvement?
In general, I am not really very satisfied with the tutorials that are out there. When Microsoft releases a new tool, technology — whatever it is — oftentimes it is not really very easy to get your hands on the insightful information and documentation, training courses, and other training materials. If you can find them, they may not explain what you need to know in a nice way. Often times they are a little bit fragmented. These user-oriented guides are something that should be better and released along with the products they are supposed to support.
For example, we have servers in Azure called Azure Data Factory which I work with quite a lot. When a new feature or new release happens, finding the right documentation or resources that explain these features and how do you work with them is a little bit more difficult than it should be, in my opinion.
There are probably a lot of extra features that might be considered to add to the scope of this solution. However, adding ports for different types of users may be one of the best. Certain users are advanced users and they can find their way around. But sometimes non-technical users or those that do not have a lot of technical background can find the complexity a little bit difficult to work with. Better handling of user gateways and privileges would be a benefit.
For how long have I used the solution?
We have been using this solution for the last three or four years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
I do not personally see many issues with the stability as long as everything is configured correctly.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
Essentially the scalability sometimes is a little bit difficult depending on how it needs to be applied in some scenarios. I have been working for very different companies from medium-sized to quite large — a few thousand users. Oftentimes only for groups of 50 plus users. Scalability is inherent in that scope and it can be done. The specific reasons and application of scaling may make it more or less challenging, but it can be done.
How are customer service and technical support?
I would say that the technical support is satisfactory. It is neither really good nor really bad.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
I have used other products like SAP or other third-party tools here and there. Most of my experience is with Microsoft Azure and I have not really considered working with other tools, platforms and solutions too much simply because Microsoft is best at integrating with their own products.
How was the initial setup?
For me, the setup is quite straightforward.
The deployment can take just a few weeks in some cases. In some cases, it is a month and even years because of the scope of the rollout. So it really depends on the project.
What about the implementation team?
As I do the installations, I do not need to use outside services.
What other advice do I have?
I would recommend and do recommend using this product for others who need it.
On a scale from one to ten where one is the worst and ten is the best, I would rate this product as an eight-out-of-ten.