OpCon Reviews

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NickWilcox
Real User
Senior Applications System Analyst at Frandsen Financial
Mar 16 2020

What is most valuable?

Anything that is file movement related is awesome. Whether you are outsourced or an on-prem in-house bank (like us), you're not just fully in-house anymore. There are so… more »

How has it helped my organization?

This is outside a bit of the day-to-day. We recently did a branch acquisition of another bank, though not a full bank. With that, we had to convert all of their ACH… more »

What needs improvement?

The solution is what you want out of it. It's not something you can just quickly grab, try, run, and play with. You have to get the knowledge and train yourself. It was… more »

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

There are different add-ons, like the Self Service or Vision model. It all depends on what agents you have in your environment. We have a mainframe and Windows, and while… more »

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

Before, we did use file transfer stuff, which was a bunch of "if" and "then" statements. We were executing with that. But, that was very limited to what the application… more »

What other advice do I have?

Take your time. Think about it. Once you start to create different concepts and learn them, come up with naming conventions, your own rules, and go by them. This way… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

At my previous company, we did not look at other solutions because we knew SMA was the most well-known within our industry. At my current bank, they did look at… more »
TobyFinnegan
Real User
Director of IT at Frontwave Credit Union
Jan 05 2020

What is most valuable?

* Scheduling * Job concurrency * Failover * Failed job notifications The schedule processing is our biggest reason for using it.

How has it helped my organization?

OpCon makes it so we are lights-out for most of our morning and evening processes. It makes it super easy to notify us when something is wrong. It allows us to incorporate… more »

What needs improvement?

As you're doing a scheduler, oftentimes you end up doing some of the same things over and over again as you define jobs. There are generally some well-used use tools… more »

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

It is a pricey solution. Comparatively speaking, you can certainly find schedulers which are cheaper. In some cases, you can find ones that are free or use free solutions… more »

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

On a scale of one to 10, where 10 is simple, super easy, and effective, that's what I would give it. At my prior work, we had another scheduler, and it was okay. It did… more »

What other advice do I have?

The cost is just shy of $20,000. That's for two licenses annually, production, and failover. Spend time flushing out the processes that you want. Add everything you… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I came in after it was already purchased and in place. If I remember correctly, the CIO did the evaluation. This product was making the rounds. It was heralded by other… more »
Learn what your peers think about OpCon. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: April 2020.
437,168 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Real User
Administrator, Core Application Services at a financial services firm with 201-500 employees
Dec 11 2019

What is most valuable?

It's the entire automation landscape that OpCon provides which is valuable. The way it works with Corelation KeyStone is probably unmatched for that core system in the credit union industry. SMA has… more »

How has it helped my organization?

It's important to keep in mind that OpCon and KeyStone, together, are a completely different animal than Spectrum and UC4. They are separate systems. They work differently. What we gained with OpCon… more »

What needs improvement?

It would be great if you could create physically separate "clients," as I call them. I wish I could have a production client and a testing client and that they would be separate. I know that SMA is… more »

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

I wanted to see if Automic was going to work with KeyStone, our core system that we were converting to. Automic pledged to help us support that and come up with a connector for it. But in doing my due… more »

What other advice do I have?

The biggest lesson I have learned from using OpCon is that it is perfectly suited to Corelation KeyStone. There isn't a better automation tool available right now, because SMA has four proprietary… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

In my career I've used three automation tools, going back to something called Maestro made by a company called Tivoli, and then UC4, which is now called Automic, and now OpCon. Of the three of those… more »
Real User
VP IT at a financial services firm with 11-50 employees
Dec 22 2019

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is being able to schedule tasks so that they reliably occur each day, each week, each month, or sometimes several times a day. We are a financial… more »

How has it helped my organization?

If I did not have OpCon, I would have to hire full-time employee to do all of the work that OpCon does. We probably save about $40,000 to $50,000 a year by being able to… more »

What needs improvement?

It is a complex product to use. Programming the schedules is complex. It does require training from OpCon. As an example, I went away for a week of training. The week… more »

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

OpCon is expensive for us as a small organization, but on the other hand, it's a lot less expensive than hiring another full-time employee. We pay for licensing annually… more »

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

We did not have a previous solution. One of my requirements, when we decided to go with our new core banking system, was that I did not want to spend my time doing these… more »

What other advice do I have?

The biggest lesson I have learned from using OpCon is that you really need an individual like my systems administrator who understands how a program like this works… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I did not look into other products. The recommendation for OpCon came from most of my colleagues in my industry working at other credit unions. I did not find another… more »
MartinTargett
Real User
Director of Production Control and Operations at NYSDOT
Dec 17 2019

What is most valuable?

There are three features which are valuable: * automated calendar functions * the notification process for failed jobs or unscheduled events occurring, via email and text messaging * the ability for the scheduling package to communicate… more »

How has it helped my organization?

The part that jumps out is the notification process. The agent can now notify us, by email or text messages, when any jobs have failed or when any groups of jobs have finished successfully. Previously, it was a manual process where somebody… more »

What needs improvement?

There's a large learning curve which, for some of our less technical staff, has been an issue. It's still new to us. Every week we're finding new ways of doing things with the product. What we miss the most is having an in-house expert whom… more »

What other advice do I have?

I would highly recommend an onsite evaluation of OpCon that has already been deployed and seeing it fully in action, so that you could be better prepared to ask the right questions prior to getting it. All we saw was a remote demo and that… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated Control-M from BMC. Both OpCon and Control-M were going to provide us with the solution that we were looking for. The decisions were then out of my hands because it was then left up to the money people. The final selling point… more »
ArturoRivera
Real User
IT Manager Business Solutions Delivery at CBC Federal Credit Union
Dec 17 2019

What is most valuable?

There are a lot of areas that are valuable. Perhaps the most valuable would be the OpCon button that users can select so that instead of having users going into Symitar… more »

How has it helped my organization?

The biggest improvement is the batch automation. We don't do anything manually anymore; everything is automated. We did have a very highly skilled employee and the job he… more »

What needs improvement?

Usage is a little complex. It's not like you can bring somebody in and they can just use it. They have to be trained. Our main OpCon person left and it's a lot harder for… more »

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

Yearly, it's around $30,000. We bought consulting hours for a year at an additional cost. We're getting 85 hours a year for consulting to help us through, for example… more »

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

We didn't have a previous solution. We were doing things manually.

What other advice do I have?

Do your homework. Definitely look at other vendors and consider your staff size. In our case, because we have a small staff, we don't have a lot of programmers. We don't… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at two other vendors. It's been a long time so I don't remember their names. They were enticing because they were definitely a lot lower in cost, but ultimately… more »
Real User
Operations Analyst - Primary OpCon at a financial services firm with 10,001+ employees
Feb 23 2020

What is most valuable?

The daily scheduler is its most valuable feature. We don't really use too many of the other features of it for our environment. As a data center, we can't use features… more »

How has it helped my organization?

Before we put OpCon in, we had some institutions which we tried to keep running in the same way, as we have standardizations. However, there are certain times of the… more »

What needs improvement?

There is room for improvement needed around setting up the calendars and frequencies. I would like more flexibility in what jobs run. Sometimes, with frequencies, I can't… more »

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

Cost depends on your environment. We are doing stuff now with failover and recovery, so we have boosted our costs. Compared to AutoSys and ISE, OpCon was a lot cheaper to… more »

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

It was proprietary scheduler for our operating system. We had another job scheduler that couldn't quite handle the flexibility we needed. It wasn't as sophisticated as… more »

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend OpCon to almost anyone. Look at it and learn it. Compare it to the competition. It's great for multiple institutions. They have everything you really… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

It is better than some of the other systems that we have looked at. It can be as simple or as sophisticated as you want to make it. It's up to you and what you need to do… more »
Real User
Vice President of Information Technology at a financial services firm with 201-500 employees
Dec 24 2019

What is most valuable?

It can run scripted tasks automatically over and over without intervention. That is what it does and the part that I really like because repetitive tasks need to be done… more »

How has it helped my organization?

Our most recent automation project had to do with our mortgage origination system where we automated virtually all of the steps being done by a human. This was about two… more »

What needs improvement?

I wouldn't call it the easiest to automate. It has to be learned, training is required, then you get better at it over time. There are right ways and wrong ways to go… more »

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

There are standard licensing fees and annual maintenance. They also have a subscription model that is a hybrid managed service. We have also invested in ancillary API and… more »

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

I did use another automation tool before OpCon, but there is almost no comparison. It is certainly not apples to apples. I have used Windows Scheduler to do very simple… more »

What other advice do I have?

Technically, almost anything can be automated. However, there is almost an equal amount of work that has to be done to have the people part accept and trust it. My advice… more »

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

At my previous company, we did evaluate other options. We evaluated another process automation commercial package, and we decided instead on OpCon. We chose OpCon because… more »
See 25 More OpCon Reviews

Articles

User Assessments By Topic About OpCon

Learn what your peers think about OpCon. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: April 2020.
437,168 professionals have used our research since 2012.

OpCon Questions

What is OpCon?

Our founders met at NASA while they were solving some of the toughest IT issues in the world at that time. The work was challenging and required lots of repetitive tasks to maintain NASA’s mainframes and complex IT processes.

Believing that there had to be a better way, they formed SMA Technologies. Since that time, we have been working with the single purpose of unlocking our clients’ potential by streamlining their IT processes and helping employees be more productive by leveraging our automation platform, OpCon.

By freeing them from repetitive tasks, they can focus on doing the critical work that will help them drive the business. No matter the industry, from financial services to aerospace, we are there to help our customers use the power of automation to simplify complex IT issues, enabling them to solve their toughest business challenges.

OpCon customers

LOHR, Carnival Cruise Lines, Herbalife, Digital Federal Credit Union, Synergent, Frandsen Bank & Trust

Highlights
Auto-scheduling is the most valuable feature. We have the ability to schedule [batch jobs on our Unisys mainframes] seven days in advance, so we know exactly how we're running every night.
The most valuable feature is the self-service because it has made it possible to provide simple and quick solutions in the handling of certain tasks.
There's also a self-service solution manager... that allows us to enable staff to run complex automation tasks by clicking a button and entering some information. They don't have to have access to the OpCon environment to kick off those kinds of events.
There are three features which are valuable: the automated calendar functions; the notification process for failed jobs or unscheduled events occurring, via email and text messaging; and the ability for the scheduling package to communicate across multiple platforms.
Previously, we would receive a file from a vendor, then we would have to go through and make changes to individual accounts in our core system. There are probably between 10 to 20 accounts any given week. It probably took around five minutes for it to run through the report and make all the changes, and that was if there was nothing complicated with all very straightforward changes. Now, that is done in 30 seconds.
It has also helped to streamline our operations. We contract out our collection department so they are no longer housed on our system. They're housed on another platform. OpCon is able to not only pull in our data, but it also, on a daily basis, updates that third-party.
One of the advantages of OpCon is the ability to use the API and web services. We couldn't do that with our previous solution. We have been able to change our procedure for ticketing. When a job is down, we can immediately create a ticket from OpCon in our ticketing solution, which is ServiceNow, using the web services.
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