Oracle Data Integrator (ODI) Review

Has a good declarative design and client-server architecture model


What is our primary use case?

We have been using Oracle Data Integrator for populating Financial Services Data Warehouse. Data extraction is done into a staging area from different source systems and then this data is validated and certain quality checks have been performed here. We used Oracle Data Integrator data quality checks builtin capability to perform these different data quality checks. Then data is consolidated and transformed into the staging area and finally gets landed into the data warehouse. I also used this for generating data hand-offs for other applications.

How has it helped my organization?

Oracle Data Integrator offers a declarative style ETL development, where you mainly use pre-built knowledge modules for doing integration tasks. As a developer, you don't need to focus on how part of the integration, you only focus on what to do. You just need to configure certain components as per your requirements and underlying execution plan and code is generated for you. For every technology there are knowledge modules available, the best optimal code is generated which eventually gets executed on database level. Our developers created best performing ETLs with very little effort leveraging this feature.

What is most valuable?

There are number of valuable features in this tool: 

  • Declarative design 
  • Client-server architecture model.
  • Very good user access model
  • Pre-built user profiles defined that give you control for access management
  • Very good logging and execution logs feature which gives you complete detail of executions and you can query these in a different manner.

All ETL code is stored in repositories in underlying database schemas. The number of users can access and work on the same solution using a client tool. So distributed teams can work on this tool in an efficient manner. 

What needs improvement?

There are certain things where it can be improved. Initial solution setup seems a bit complex at the start, it should be improved because it becomes bit tough for a novice to get started on this. Sometimes error description is not helpful to understand the problem it gives some generic type of errors which are at times not that helpful to understand the underlying root cause of the issue. 

Error descriptions should be easy and specific to actual problems rather than generic lengthy descriptions. Also, another main feature that should be readily available is that there should be a source component available that can extract data from a source based on the custom query rather than giving a source data store only in the mapping. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Oracle Data Integrator for five years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Good.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It's very good.

How are customer service and technical support?

Whenever we needed Oracle Technical Support, we're able to get it in timely fashion and most of the time has been good to help in resolving the problems.

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

I didn't switch any tool. I'm a professional developer and my tool selection is based on client requirements. I've used both SSIS and ODI for different clients.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is a bit complex as it needs some repo schema setup and agent setup.

What about the implementation team?

We did it at our own.

What was our ROI?

Excellent.

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

ODI has bit on higher end in setup and pricing but it has more power as well. So it depends on your use. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

No, my selection was based on client's choice.

What other advice do I have?

I think different tools have their own pros and cons, so it all depends on your overall needs.

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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