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SAP Data Services OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

SAP Data Services is #1 ranked solution in top Data Quality tools and #8 ranked solution in top Data Integration Tools. IT Central Station users give SAP Data Services an average rating of 8 out of 10. SAP Data Services is most commonly compared to Azure Data Factory:SAP Data Services vs Azure Data Factory. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a computer software company, accounting for 34% of all views.
What is SAP Data Services?

You cannot afford to run your business on questionable data. With SAP® Data Services software, you can access, transform, and connect data to fuel your critical business processes. Together, these enterprise-class solutions enable data integration and data quality, providing the right level of insight across your business so you can make better decisions and operate more effectively.

SAP Data Services was previously known as SAP BusinessObjects Data Services, SAP BusinessObjects Data Integrator, BusinessObjects Data Integrator.

Buyer's Guide

Download the Data Integration Tools Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: November 2021

SAP Data Services Customers

EMC Corporation, LivePerson, Eldorado, Mozzart, The VELUX Group, AOK Bundesverband, Hilti Group, Nissha Printing Company Ltd., Asian Paints, Aareal Bank Group, Migros Group

SAP Data Services Video

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about SAP Data Services pricing:
  • "Its pricing is as per the enterprise agreement and not a concern for us."
  • "The price is very reasonable."

SAP Data Services Reviews

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Michael Lutz
Sr. Data Warehouse Developer at Fox Chase Cancer Center
Real User
It's a powerful tool that does a lot, but it has its annoyances

Pros and Cons

  • "Data Services' table comparison mechanism is very powerful. It's pretty hard to find a similar feature in other solutions."
  • "Source code control is another headache. When your source code base gets too large, managing the source code becomes cumbersome."

What is our primary use case?

We use Data Services to pull data from a hospital system and transfer it to a centralized Oracle database. Then we use the tool to transform the data for reporting and analytics.

How has it helped my organization?

Data Services enables hospital staff to understand the data across disparate systems within the enterprise, helping the company to make more intelligent business decisions.

What is most valuable?

Data Services' table comparison mechanism is very powerful. It's pretty hard to find a similar feature in other solutions. There isn't really a great solution in Raw SQL. Data Services' general programming features are strong. The programming language is pretty rich. You can significantly transform the data. It also performs well when pushing SQL down to the database server. The tool tries to do as much work in a database as possible, but there are times when it can't do that as well. In those cases, it will process the data in its own engine. All the connectors and the panelization capabilities are pretty useful as well.

What needs improvement?

Data Services' UI can be annoying. Searching through long lists of things takes time because of some limitations. Source code control is another headache. When your source code base gets too large, managing the source code becomes cumbersome. Also, it's not possible to generate the code. You have to code everything manually. There's no way they're going to fix this. It would be nice to generate code from another program, but you can't do that. 

For some tasks you need to do as an ETL developer, it doesn't make sense to code them all one at a time. You want to be able to read the metadata from something and generate the code. But the architecture of the tool doesn't play nicely with that. The ability to generate code would be one feature that would be nice to have. 

I'd also like to see a smoother code promotion check-in and check-out process for large codebases and fixes to the comparison mechanism. The tool allows you to compare your code against the essential repositories, but the comparison mechanism is buggy. It sometimes reports false positives for what has changed. SAP could maybe improve the performance diagnostics for the production environment. Data Services has some rudimentary performance analysis tools, but they're pretty basic. There's not a dashboard to view where you're doing things well and not well performance-wise. A comprehensive performance dashboard would be nice.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using SAP Data Services for about six years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Data Services is pretty solid. I would give it almost a perfect 10 for stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Data Services is highly scalable. Right now, there are a small number of direct users. They're all developers and software engineers. This isn't a user-facing tool like BOE or Webby that reports business objects. Data Services is an ETL tool that IT people use, so the user base is small. We are using it extensively, though, with about 150 jobs that run every night, but we are planning on decreasing our usage of the tool. However, that is because of what's going on in the hospital system rather than the tool's fault. Due to system changes, we don't have as much need for ETL work. So it will be probably decreasing over time. But we've used it extensively for six years.

How are customer service and support?

SAP's support is good, but the process can be complex. If I were giving it a letter grade, I would say B-minus. 

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

My company was using SSIS for a short time before I came on board. They switched because my boss knows Oracle well, and this seemed like the best option. He did an entire evaluation, and they decided to go with SAP Data Services because it is a fully functional reporting suite. Data Services operates well with BOE and its reporting solution. However, the primary factor in the decision was that my boss isn't a SQL Server person. He's an Oracle person, and this tool is more robust in the Oracle realm. In addition, Data Services isn't overly expensive. I believe that it's considerably less costly than Oracle Data Integrator or Informatica PowerCenter. He would've gone with those two tools, but they were too expensive.

How was the initial setup?

Setting up Data Services is moderately complex. It's a big tool with a lot of components that need to be configured. Data Services is an enterprise-level data extraction and transformation load tool. There are just a lot of pieces. We've struggled because we were trying to install it on Solaris. I just finished an upgrade. I set up our environment five years ago, and we just upgraded it again. 

It took much longer because they didn't have good support for Solaris. They say that they support Solaris, but they really don't. Since we moved over to Linux, we've been a lot better off. But it's a pretty sizable effort to set up the tool and configure it. You have to have DevTest and PRIDE. There are a lot of moving parts and various repository job servers. You have to understand the topology and architecture of the tool to know how to install and configure it. It's not like installing Microsoft Word.

The total amount of time needed to deploy depends on your environment. Generally, it should take about a month to get it up and running. In actuality, it took a lot longer than that. But once we got on the right OS, it was quicker. Our deployment strategy was to have three instances of the tool. First, we have DevTest and PRIDE. Then each developer has their own repository where they can do their work. So we have a development, test, and production repository. Every developer first runs their code in their own repository, which is where your code is stored. The code is then promoted to a common dev area. After that, it goes to a common test area, and finally, it heads to a common production area.

We've deployed Data Services several times, and each time we've had to do a net new install and transfer things over. We ran into some limitations on being able to upgrade in place. We have one person managing and maintaining the solution, but that person's workload fluctuates. It can be very demanding at times. It can use a lot of one person's time for short periods when you do upgrades. You have to know how to get onto SAP's website, open tickets, and work with SAP Support. That's another thing that adds to the time of the deployment. The amount of time you spend with SAP support is non-trivial. You have to understand the ticketing system and how to contact the engineers. It takes a little while to get used to that.

What about the implementation team?

When Data Services was first deployed, I was not working at the company. At the time, they used consultants. Since I came on, I've been handling it all in-house.

What other advice do I have?

I rate SAP Data Services seven out of 10. It's a powerful tool that does a lot. It has a lot of strengths, but there are some annoyances that slow down the programmer. It gets frustrating over time. It's also crucial that your repository database technology performs well. I would say seven out of 10 because it's powerful. It would be a nine if it weren't for the clunky source code management and a few other hassles like its inability to generate code.

I probably wouldn't choose this tool for what we're doing because I don't think SAP views this tool as their go-forward technology. SAP now has HANA and a new set of tools that operate in the cloud. I believe the company is primarily in a maintenance situation with Data Services. So if I were starting a new ETL project from scratch, I wouldn't go with SAP Data Services.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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MZ
Senior Functional Consultant at International Turnkey Systems - ITS
Consultant
Top 5Leaderboard
An easy initial setup, good pricing and very stable

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution offers very good integration capabilities."
  • "There should be some kind of enhancement that can be done on the admin side of certain sites where we can assign the roles and responsibilities. We should be able to control who is using the tool and how."

What is our primary use case?

We use the solution as a tool to do the deployment for the reports.

While we deal mostly with banks, who do not need complex analytics (their reports are largely static). It's useful for telecoms or other sectors that need to monitor daily trends. However, once designed, the banks can use the same report on a daily basis to see their somewhat static results quite easily.

What is most valuable?

We really like this product. Whenever we have customers, no matter where they are in the world, we suggest this app and we implement SAP for them.

The solution offers very good integration capabilities.

It's a quality product.

After working with the tool for so many years, I can say that overall their services are a really good deal. They continue to enhance their services regularly and are always improving their offering.

The tools that are provided are some of the best on the market and the pricing is really great.

What needs improvement?

In terms of data integration or other tools, we have a road map and we send out requests for enhancements through our marketing team who is involved in the process.

There should be some kind of enhancement that can be done on the admin side of certain sites where we can assign the roles and responsibilities. We should be able to control who is using the tool and how.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have used the solution for ten to 12 years. I myself started with SAP in 2006.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is excellent. There aren't bugs or glitches that I have seen. The system doesn't crash. Organizations can rely on its performance.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability of the solution is very good. If an organization needs to expand it further after implementation, they shouldn't have any issues. 

How are customer service and technical support?

We've never had to contact technical support. We have our own team in-house. If there are queries, we tend to resolve them ourselves or use SAP's portal.

We've never really faced any difficulty that would require us to involve SAP directly.

Initially, we did have a few issues around Arabic localization and Arabic values, but once we resolved it, we didn't find many other issues. Most of the reports, the layouts, the data headers, etc. are now in Arabic and it's no problem. 

How was the initial setup?

For myself, I find the initial setup quite simple. However, I have many years under my belt working directly with the product. Someone with beginner-level knowledge might find it a bit challenging. In general, however, it's easy, not difficult.

The length of deployment depends on the organization and requirements. It does take a few days, but some projects are longer than others. It really depends on the client's needs. Each situation is unique.

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

We're a technical team, so we aren't directly involved in the prices or cost of the solution. Our marketing department handles the details and negotiates prices with SAP. They try to get reductions to lower pricing in the contracts. I have no idea what the exact amount is our company pays on a monthly or yearly basis.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Currently, I am doing some research into an Oracle solution that a client is asking about. While we focus on SAP, they are interested in this Oracle tool. I've been doing some analysis into it to compare the two solutions in case the bank decides that they do indeed want to migrate from SAP to Oracle. 

What other advice do I have?

We are already an SAP gold partner. We have a significant level of partnership with SAP. We also used to do the reports for SAP. This is the only tool that we suggest to our clients and we do the implementation for banks in the Middle East. Nearly all customers have the same tool that we use. We are one of the leading banking software providers in the region.

We do not work with the cloud. We do local installations only. We don't use anything on the cloud because banks normally have policies in place where they cannot share with the cloud for security and risk aversion reasons. 

It is one of the nicest tools on the market and people really should use it.

As compared to the other tools it is easier to implement and easier to understand. It's very efficient especially if you are looking at performance and stability. 

I'd rate the solution nine out of ten. I'd give it perfect marks, but there is always room for some more enhancements.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
Find out what your peers are saying about SAP, Informatica, Microsoft and others in Data Integration Tools. Updated: November 2021.
554,586 professionals have used our research since 2012.
SP
Senior Manager at GTX Soft
Real User
Top 20
Good dashboards and data reporting but needs more cognitive analytics

Pros and Cons

  • "The reporting on the data, even from third-party software, is very good."
  • "The solution should offer more machine learning and automation."

What is most valuable?

The solution has very good dashboards. They have a good refresh rate - after every 300 articles.

The reporting on the data, even from third-party software, is very good.

What needs improvement?

The solution should offer more machine learning and automation.

The solution should add more cognitive analytics, particularly on the RPA. It should allow for data to be picked up in Outlook and processed in SAP, then communicated via any third-party software. This will help with decision making and retrieve the data per the requirements of the user.

The existing ERP doesn't have any capabilities. The features of RPA need to be built into ERP. It's lagging in not just this solution, but almost all software.

For how long have I used the solution?

I primarily use the solution for building data cubes from existing third party software at SAP and consolidating different stages on queries.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We do plan to increase usage in the future.

How are customer service and technical support?

We interact with technical support regularly and often reach out about two times a week. Their support office is very close to ours in Bangalore. We've been very satisfied with their level of service.

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

We did previously use a different solution. We switched because Data Service has a lot of upcoming technology and there's a good market for their services currently.

How was the initial setup?

The solution is straightforward to set up. A lot of research needs to go into the work, however. A standard deployment takes a few months.

What about the implementation team?

We had our own consultants assist with the implementation. They have a lot of knowledge about SAP and SAP environments for building a gateway.

What other advice do I have?

We use the on-premises deployment model.

SAP Data Services predominantly works for event tracking or training environments. However, if you're talking about social media, where there needs to be a lot of understanding about the data, you could build this solution into that area as well. You will just need a lot of research and development.

I'd rate the solution seven out of ten. If they build in cognitive capabilities and went beyond just reporting on the dashboard, I'd rate it higher.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:
RK
BI and Visualization Platform Lead at a agriculture with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 10
A stable and scalable solution with good integration and data migration capabilities

Pros and Cons

  • "Its integration capabilities and the data migration capabilities are the most valuable. It is very good for SAP and non-SAP tools. It has very good integration with SAP, but it also has the capabilities to connect to other systems. We find it very helpful and stable."
  • "The skillset of data engineers matters a bit to use all the functionality of this solution. Otherwise, the delivery speed won't be faster."

What is our primary use case?

It is a very widely used tool. We mostly use it for integration purposes between various systems and for data migration. One of the recent use cases is about the AWS database that we are trying to establish. We need the data from various on-premise systems, and SAP is one of them, which is majorly used. We want to put that data into our data lake.

We are not using the cataloging and metadata features much. We have a separate data cataloging tool.

What is most valuable?

Its integration capabilities and the data migration capabilities are the most valuable. It is very good for SAP and non-SAP tools. It has very good integration with SAP, but it also has the capabilities to connect to other systems. We find it very helpful and stable.

What needs improvement?

The skillset of data engineers matters a bit to use all the functionality of this solution. Otherwise, the delivery speed won't be faster. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for eight to ten years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is a very stable solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is scalable.

How are customer service and technical support?

We are getting responses from them. There were one or two issues that were very critical, and we got the needed attention from them. 

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

We also have other ETL tools, such as Informatica, that are being used in other teams, but SAP Data Services is the main solution that we are using. I have not heard any complaints about it.

What about the implementation team?

We, fortunately, have a very good team in our organization, which makes it easy for us to implement.

It is a part of an enterprise agreement. There is another department that handles its maintenance.

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

Its pricing is as per the enterprise agreement and not a concern for us.

What other advice do I have?

Overall, we have good experience and feedback. We have very skilled engineers in our team, and I haven't heard any kind of negative feedback about this solution.

I would rate SAP Data Services an eight out of ten.

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.
HD
Manager of Customer Care Center at a construction company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Good logging capability, but not a solution that I recommend for incident management

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is the logging capability."
  • "The interface is not quite user-friendly and is in need of improvement."

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use is for storing incidents and all of the financial information that accompany them.

How has it helped my organization?

We do maintenance on buildings and our customers call if there is a problem. Each time a call comes in we log the incident, solve the problem, and later invoice the customer.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the logging capability. We use it for logging incidents.

What needs improvement?

The interface is not quite user-friendly and is in need of improvement. 

In the next release of this solution, I would like to have a planning tool.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using SAP Data Services for two years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

With respect to stability, we have not had any problems.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not had issues with scalability.

How are customer service and technical support?

We have our own technical support group, so I have not been in contact with SAP for support.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We are currently evaluating ServiceNow to see if it meets our needs and has a better user interface.

What other advice do I have?

This is not a solution I recommend for incident management. SAP works well for the financial side of the business, but for anybody who is researching solutions for incident management, I suggest that they use another product.

I would rate this solution a six out of ten.

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.
Christophe BERNARD
Business Intelligence Manager at ALPTIS ASSURANCES
Real User
Top 5
Good ETL and priced well, but the REST API is not easy

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is the ETL functionality."
  • "It's an ETL that is very good with relational databases but not as good with files and semi-structured files."

What is our primary use case?

We load data from databases into our data warehouse.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the ETL functionality.

What needs improvement?

Dealing with the REST API is not easy with Data Services.

It is mandatory to have a WADL file and it is difficult to find this file and set it up.

I would like to see a better connection with the API and the use of XML files.

It's an ETL that is very good with relational databases but not as good with files and semi-structured files. 

Also, the support could be better.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with SAP Data Services for 15 years.

How are customer service and technical support?

We have a SaaS company doing level one support.

I have not had an exchange with SAP support. I deal with my local support, and when there is a problem, they escalate the issue to SAP technical support. 

I don't deal with SAP support directly.

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

Previously, I had used another ETL solution.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward and easy to complete.

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

The price is very reasonable.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate SAP Data Services an eight out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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GG
Business Intelligence Senior Developer II at a transportation company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Stable and offers good maintenance of data services but needs better integration capabilities

What is most valuable?

The maintenance of data services is the solution's most valuable feature.

What needs improvement?

The solution should allow for better integration with other analysis tools. It needs to integrate better specifically with big data and other management solutions. The pricing of the solution should be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for seven years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is scalable.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support could be a bit better. We haven't been completely satisfied with them.

What other advice do I have?

We use the on-premises…

What is most valuable?

The maintenance of data services is the solution's most valuable feature.

What needs improvement?

The solution should allow for better integration with other analysis tools. It needs to integrate better specifically with big data and other management solutions.

The pricing of the solution should be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for seven years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is scalable.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support could be a bit better. We haven't been completely satisfied with them.

What other advice do I have?

We use the on-premises deployment model.

I'd rate the solution seven out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.