Talend Data Management Platform Review

Improved efficiency, saving time and money for our data integration tasks and services

What is our primary use case?

Initially, it was data integration for academic data to an EDW on Sybase IQ for reporting purposes. Now it has evolved into data integration for both application and user consumption, loading data into Sybase and MS-SQL data stores. We use Studio on Windows with Servers on Ubuntu

How has it helped my organization?

This solution has allowed us to use more technical individuals for data integration that don't otherwise have expertise in SQL, Stored Procedures, and/or Perl scripting. It has improved our ability to integrate data from multiple systems and decreased the time it usually took using other means, which involved Perl or high-level SQL techniques.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the Talend Admin Console (TAC). It connects Studio to SVN (Code Repository), Nexus (Artifacts/Build Packages), and Job Servers (Runs Nexus packaged jobs). TAC also manages user access to projects, which allows multiple users, working within the same project at the same time, while maintaining all code changes in SVN. 

Talend Studio has the ability to connect to almost anything to integrate data from files, databases, web services, etc.

What needs improvement?

The documentation from version to version could be more accurate. I have found information that is inaccurate or doesn't apply to the version I am trying to install or work in. Documentation could also be more user-friendly as it seems cumbersome with too much information, which probably is why I have found inaccurate information.   

The application installation process needs improvement. They have an easy "non-secure" installation for trying out the subscription version. I would like to see installation instructions for a Production environment with system and server layout using SSL Security. It would go a long way to understand what Talend envisions as a best practice for a production environment. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for eight years and two months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The Talend solution has been very stable. We have very few issues with the systems running the jobs. Most issues we have are with unknown changes to source systems that Talend jobs interact with.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is scalable but we have not had to use it. Our next upgrade will likely be with their Cloud solution if not using Docker Containers.  

How are customer service and technical support?

In the beginning, Customer Support helped a lot. Now that I know more, I would like them to respond with information I have not already tried. Escalation from Customer Support to get the right Technical Support person faster would be nice. Most times, I get a quick response. Sometimes, however, it can take days to get to the person who knows what is wrong or get a fix. Other times, I have solved my issue before they have an answer.

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

We used Perl and SQL for data integration.

How was the initial setup?

Initial setup was using the Talend Installer, which is very easy but on the next upgrade, we decided to split the systems into individual VMs for better management of security patches. It gets really complex as you go from Data Integration to Data Services Platforms because of the open-source apps in their suite.

What about the implementation team?

I implemented Talend in-house / on-premises. I have no experience with using a Talend vendor for implementing a solution, though this may change in the near future. 

What was our ROI?

Not sure about the money side but I know it has been easier and less time consuming to complete the same tasks for data integration compared to how we did it prior to using Talend. 

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

For a production environment, plan to separate the Talend suite of systems onto their own servers for easier management with 'security updates' and secure each one for encryption of data across systems. Using the installer for a Production environment didn't work for what we needed. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We did evaluate other solutions, although I can't remember the names. They were either more expensive and/or didn't have a community/free version that compared to Talend's Open Studio at the time.

What other advice do I have?

Having developers that are familiar with Java and Tomcat will be very helpful but not required when using Talend.

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

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