Talend Data Management Platform Review

Feature rich, easy to use, and easy to understand

What is our primary use case?

This solution is being used on the client-side. It's a data warehouse solution, basically integrating data between Oracle data sources going into a Teradata Database data warehouse.

What is most valuable?

As far as the features that I have found most valuable, it's fairly easy to understand, even for someone inexperienced going from Informatica and DataStage to Talend. The other positive thing, although I haven't used it personally, is that it shares the same platform as the data quality solution which is important in my line of work. Both sections are beginning to be asked for by our clients. Unlike a few years ago, when it was either you doing a data integration or somebody else doing a data quality assessment, in this day and age they're actually asking for both, and it is a good platform to do both. The other thing about Talend is that it has a lot of push down features, wherein most of the execution that has to be done on the processing side, does not require much heavy lifting up. There's not much need to lift the data so that it can be processed and then pushed back to the database, which was traditionally the approach for the likes of Informatica and even DataStage if they're not using pushdown authentication.

I put Talend on the same playing field as the other platforms and they're very competitive in terms of performance, which is a good selling point. It has very rich features. It provides a very rich feature set in the application.

What needs improvement?

I don't see any additional need for improvement, at least not in the use cases that I've encountered so far.

I'm not sure if they have it, but including either XML or JSON in the next release would definitely be a good transformation. I'm not sure if Talend has that feature, but it's one of those requirements that we are working around and have to do some parsing of XML so this could make it easier.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with Talend Data Management Platform over the last year.

Additionally, I've had a few years experience with Informatica, a few years with DataStage, and then a few years with SQL Server, and only recently with Talend.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

As I mentioned, we've only been using it for a year, and for a portion of that it was still in development, but it's been fairly stable in the last 10 to 12 months.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

In terms of scalability, I think from an engineering standpoint, Talend should be able to scale as your database platforms expand, as well. Noting that it has a run-time that basically executes your job on the database side. It should scale fairly consistently with your database growth. I would anticipate that.

How are customer service and technical support?

I know the support people personally, so yes, I've contacted them for a few inquiries every now and then. None of that too difficult or too serious, it's usually more on unexplored feature sets or specific functionalities that I may have missed the documentation for. It's usually more regarding inquiries rather than solution fixes.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is not too simple but I guess somebody out of college would be able to set it up felt fairly easily. So it should be fairly simple.

The Apple deployment took only about a week, but tuning and validation took another two weeks

What about the implementation team?

I observed the implementation, but normally, at least in the projects that I have, we bring in Talend engineers to set up the platform for us.

Deployment was a two-person job. There's a lot of coordination between the system administrators and the database administrators to get the connectors right. It's about a handful of people. Of course, that's not the same as the developers, but for our use case, it was a very small team that deployed it.

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

Clients are looking for options. Before using Talend, when I was building Informatica and DataStage, they both were the "big bucks" kind of data integration and clients are desperate for deep-dive data warehousing because of the expense. But with Talend, it provides both a quick startup with their community and at the same time, it provides a different financial strategy with their subscription model. There are some clients who are actually financially stable enough and they're looking for a license model or a financial model like what Talend doesn't have. They like its features but it follows a subscription model. So it's even more on the client's business side wherein they want variety, but sometimes the variety is very much limited to the brand.

Basically, like in our case, Informatica and Cappex only offer a staged data payment model. But Talend offers a monthly subscription kind of model, and there are some clients who like the features of Talend, but they are not keen on having an OPEX, an operational expense, kind of financial model.

What other advice do I have?

I would advise potential customers to try Talend's community edition. It would be a good strategy for them to get their hands and feet wet using the community so they'll understand the ins and outs of those sites.

It works well for the product because you get traction in terms of adoption and community. The community is rich enough for people to build actual production solutions, and it's open to expansion in an enterprise community. So that would be a good strategy, especially if a company is still exploring tools. It's a low-cost approach to get started.

On a scale of one to ten, I would rate Talend Data Management Platform a nine. 

What would make it a ten, at least in my region, is the support. In the Philippines, there's only a handful of Talend support. The support is very helpful, but it's very limited. They usually refer you to the community or to their reseller partners, but for direct engineering inquiries, they would have to refer you to their head office. So for a very popular product, their footprint here in the Philippines is still on the development side or ramp-up side.

Support could improve. I'm leveraging it on personal references because I know the people running the show here in the Philippines. But for some of the clients, they would find it difficult to find global support for Talend here in the Philippines.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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