We just raised a $30M Series A: Read our story

SAP PowerDesigner OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

SAP PowerDesigner is #1 ranked solution in top Metadata Management tools and #4 ranked solution in top Architecture Management tools. IT Central Station users give SAP PowerDesigner an average rating of 8 out of 10. SAP PowerDesigner is most commonly compared to erwin Data Modeler (DM):SAP PowerDesigner vs erwin Data Modeler (DM). The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a computer software company, accounting for 26% of all views.
What is SAP PowerDesigner?

Plan and manage complex business transformation initiatives with SAP PowerDesigner. The software’s data modeling tools let you build a blueprint of your current enterprise architecture and visualize the impact of change before it happens. Automatically capture architecture layers and requirements, tap into a powerful metadata repository, and share discoveries with your team.

SAP PowerDesigner was previously known as Sybase PowerDesigner.

SAP PowerDesigner Buyer's Guide

Download the SAP PowerDesigner Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: November 2021

SAP PowerDesigner Customers

Medtronic, Cirque du Soleil, Antarc, B&G Manufacturing, EarlySense, eBay, Ferrero, James Austin Company, Lenovo, Sagem, RAK Ceramics, Vodafone

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about SAP PowerDesigner pricing:
  • "SAP PowerDesigner is cheaper than eriwin."
  • "I bought the software outright and do not pay a licensing fee."

SAP PowerDesigner Reviews

Filter by:
Filter Reviews
Industry
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Company Size
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Job Level
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Rating
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Considered
Loading...
Filter Unavailable
Order by:
Loading...
  • Date
  • Highest Rating
  • Lowest Rating
  • Review Length
Search:
Showingreviews based on the current filters. Reset all filters
Fraven Ang
Manager, Data Architecture at DFS Singapore Pte Ltd
Real User
Top 10
Ability to work on a single repository is great; web portal enables view from the browser perspective

Pros and Cons

  • "Very good repository features."
  • "UI could be improved by enabling simpler navigation."

What is our primary use case?

We are using the enterprise architect version of the solution, using the repository to create our enterprise models; different business models that include process to data models and application architecture models. From a dimension perspective it's like a business application with data and infrastructure. We have categories of different models and we use this tool. I model a lot of these into centralized repositories, so they can be used by internal staff to view all the models or to see the lineage and navigate through them, viewing the relationship between the models and staff. 

In terms of modeling, we have large teams of around 50 to 60 people who have the license to show the different kinds of models in terms of system projects. For the web portal which allows viewing of the models, all users in our organization have access rights, meaning there are around 100 people that have access. The solution is used daily. We will likely carry out a review at the end of the year to see whether the current configuration is enough for us or whether we need to expand. We are customers of SAP and I'm a manager, data architecture. 

What is most valuable?

One of the key reasons for choosing this solution above others is because of the repository features which we're able to consolidate and work on a single repository where we store all our models in one location. In addition, the web portal feature allows us to present, or actually view these models from a browser's perspective. We have two groups of people: The first develops the models and the second views them. They can log in to a web portal and view the models. The product presented a strong case for us in deciding to establish this kind of creation and consumption model to make it really cost effective and increase the value of our organization. 

What needs improvement?

Although the presentation for viewing the models is good, I think it could be better. From my experience with other products, the SAP UI could be improved by enabling simpler navigation, especially for non-technical users. It would be ideal if there was a more seamless viewing experience of the models. Another improvement would be to adopt more industry models, especially from the enterprise architecture dimension. You could be adopting the industry standard as with made models, UML and other forms of industry enterprise architecture models. That would enhance the whole usability and enterprise nature of the modeling t

Additional features could support other model types which would improve the connectors to the increasing number of software to service packages now that a lot of the applications are moving into the cloud. We need to connect on all fronts. There is still a lot of room for improvement on the web portals in terms of the usability and the visual. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using this solution for about eight months. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

From the performance perspective, I think the tool is pretty stable. The only issue might be on the loading of the model which depends on how complex your model is. You need to be careful of those with a lot of relationships and you need to add other models when you load it in the web portal, and that can slow things down. In general, the solution is stable but it depends on your configuration. I don't have many crashes. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability seems to be okay although I haven't fully tested it yet. 

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is good and they reply promptly. They also have information online. I'm happy with the support. 

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

I used to use ER/Studio and Techwin for modeling. In my previous job, the focus was more on the modeling and data modeling as a stand-alone kit. We selected PowerDesigner here because of the repository setup it caters to. SAP has the function to be able to establish the repositories, work in teams and then consolidate and present to a larger audience through a web browser. That was the main consideration for switching. The usability of how to model is pretty similar and there's no big difference in terms of the functionalities. But from a whole enterprise setup; the repositories, the check in, check out of those things into a central repository, are the key reasons we switched. 

One key difference is the connectivity. Besides the modeling we also do reverse engineering. We will try to connect to different data sources to extract information rather than building a model from scratch. That is one advantage because this is actually the SAP program so it has a good connection with the SAP product. We use quite a lot of SAP modules in our organization, so it's a good fit in a way that we can actually link it to some of our SAP servers and database and just reverse engineer the models. This is a main benefit over the other solutions which  are more neutral and more stand-alone products.

How was the initial setup?

I carried out the initial setup myself and would say that it is moderately difficult. There's a lot of reading necessary on the documentation and if you're setting it up for the first time you might require technical support. Implementation took several days but the timing really depends because some of it requires the trust structures, opening up parts, etc.  

What other advice do I have?

The key thing is really about the use case or the requirements. We are into enterprise modeling and we are looking at sharing the models and those are the requirements that shift the evaluation criteria. For those looking at stand-alone models, they may not be looking at sharing these, mainly they just want to produce their models and things, so those criteria will differentiate selecting the different products. And whether you have a large team of people or you are focusing on only a few players in a small team, that will also determine your criteria for selecting the product. 

I would rate this solution an eight out of 10. 

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.
MM
DA with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 10
A highly user-friendly tool that's great for documentation

Pros and Cons

  • "It's a great tool for documentation."
  • "Connectivity can be improved because it's not very good."

What is our primary use case?

I'm using SAP PowerDesigner to build and maintain an enterprise-wide relational data model for one of the largest banks in Israel.

How has it helped my organization?

As a central DA, I can't do all this work. We distribute our work to different people in different applications, and you have to teach them to use it. SAP PowerDesigner is much easier to use and much easier to teach. We have hundreds of people using SAP PowerDesigner, and you have to teach them, and you have to get them to maintain their own data models.

What is most valuable?

SAP Powerdesigner helps build proper data models based on the methodology of relational databases, which are now 40 years old. I think the big advantage of Powerdesigner over erwin is its intuitive Microsoft like usability. 

It's much easier to use PowerDesigner than erwin. It's also a cheaper product, and it supports many different relational databases. I think PowerDeisgner is more practical, easier, quicker, and more intuitive. I prefer to use Powerdesigner over erwin for large enterprise applications. 

It's a great tool for documentation. A new data scientist can easily understand the data just by looking at it. Once you are managing your physical data with a logical data model, by looking at this data model, you can understand what it means, the business meaning of the elements which are maintained by the relational database.

What needs improvement?

Connectivity can be improved because it's not very good. I would expect data catalog types of products to connect to the database, the repository of PowerDesigner, and get the metadata out more easily. 

I think as a company, once Sybase purchased SAP PowerDesigner, SAP's investment decreased. I think the number of new features and the product's development is much slower than before.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

SAP PowerDesigner is a stable solution. I would say the quality of the software is good. No issues, visibility is very high, and almost no problems.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We didn't have any problems with scalability. We maintain hundreds of data models in the repository of PowerDesigner, and we are maintaining many versions in each model, sometimes maybe even ten. Sometimes even over a hundred different versions in one model, and we still didn't have any problems.

How are customer service and technical support?

I think technical support is okay, but it could be better. As they are in France, it's a little difficult to reach them. But it's not much of a problem. For instance, if you need to resolve an issue, you have to provide them with the data model. You have to send them the data model as a problem. To do this with a bank's data model, you need to go through security, and you need to get all the approvals. This part is a huge problem. It's a huge headache, and it usually takes time. It would help if technical support is handled differently and made more accessible. 

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

I worked with erwin for maybe a year or two. Then we switched to SAP PowerDesigner because of the quality of the product and the price. The cost of the product is cheaper, and the bank was very sensitive to the price. I am happy with the switch to PowerDesigner.

How was the initial setup?

The initial set up of SAP PowerDesigner was okay. But it really depends. For example, the initial setup for a startup would be an easy task. If it's a bank, you can't install it by yourself.
In my experience, it took months to set up and deploy SAP PowerDesigner for one of my banking clients. 

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

SAP PowerDesigner is cheaper than eriwin.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Before choosing SAP PowerDesigner, we actually evaluated erwin.

What other advice do I have?

I would highly recommend this product to be used in each and every application system where you have to design a relational database. It doesn't matter which relational database as you can use it for MSSQL, Oracle, Postgres.

There are over 50 or 60 different tools like SAP PowerDesigner, but most of them are limited to maintaining a few relational databases like Oracle or MSSQL. But PowerDesigner, as well as erwin can be sued with many different relational databases. This makes it easy to switch and maintain the logical level and then create the DDL for Oracle, MSSQL, MySQL, for DB2, or DB2W.

I am using just part of SAP PowerDesigner as a tool. This is because it offers some additional capabilities, like business engineering. Other additional capabilities that I never used because there were additional tools for that.

Whether we use Powerdesigner or some other different tool, it's impossible to build an enterprise data model for big application systems. For example, a CIF covering the count and the post.

If it's loans, once we have a database with over ten entities, it's very hard to do it manually. You have to work with a tool to create a proper data model, and then a proper database with properly defined entities, primary keys, relationships, and foreign keys. You must have a tool. It's impossible to do it manually.

Once such a data model is created, it becomes the source. When trying to understand the beats revolving around magnetic media, you don't have to use the relational data model and the logical data model to understand the data. Once you understand the data, you know the application system. The data is basically a PowerDesigner. The main usage is to design and maintain the data model, the logical data model, and the physical data model.

The physical data model is achieved by pushing a button, and the tools will automatically create the DDL. You would just have to implement it as it is. You don't have to write the DDL manually. The business understanding and the business requirements are translated into the physical design one by one. The implementation is according to the business requirement, as a business understanding of the system.

On a scale from one to ten, I would give SAP PowerDesigner a nine.

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.
Learn what your peers think about SAP PowerDesigner. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: November 2021.
554,529 professionals have used our research since 2012.
MN
Chief Architect at Imagic Consultancy Limited
Real User
Top 10Leaderboard
Good flexibility, great features, and very scalable

Pros and Cons

  • "It offers a lot of features in one solution. You would have to get multiple other products to bundle together all of the capabilities that you get in just this product."
  • "The solution is very, very expensive. It would be ideal if it was a more affordable product."

What is most valuable?

I'm an IT architect. I make use of this particular tool end-to-end, especially when I design objects. I also can immediately create the frameworks in PowerBuilder.

In just one click, I can create everything that I want.

I can download the solution right onto my PC.

It's a fantastic tool. It offers lots of flexibility. It saves companies pain and it keeps everything consistent. Whatever the idea was that started at the business level can go down to the database level.

It offers a lot of features in one solution. You would have to get multiple other products to bundle together all of the capabilities that you get in just this product.

What needs improvement?

The one issue I've found goes a long way back, especially from version 6.0 onward. In 6.0 there was a fantastic modeling functionality called "Process Analysis Modeling." It was very simple and very straightforward, yet it covered practically all of the three or four important components, which the software should have.

Later, that capability was taken out of PowerDesigner. It got lost somewhere. Yet it was something that was very, very nice to have. SAP, they missed it somehow. Maybe it was removed in error? If they could bring it back, that would be amazing. 

When we had done some of the model icons to other models attached business process modeling, was far easier. The functionality has gone away. 

The solution is very, very expensive. It would be ideal if it was a more affordable product.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using PowerDesigner intermittently, not continuously. I have been using a few other CASE tools as well. In my estimation, I've been using this one since 1994.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is quite stable. We haven't had any issues in that regard.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is based on a RDBMS database, a proper or relational database. It is a one to multi-person version. Any number of people can work simultaneously on it. They actually can buy the license for their own computer, that's all. Therefore, it can scale easily across teams. You just need to license.

I have a team of about ten people and we all use it. We're a small consultancy firm. Everyone uses it.

We will continue to use the solution and increase it as required in the future.

How are customer service and technical support?

We don't need to purchase technical support per se. If there is any emergency bug fix, it's called UBS. They would send it to us, especially if we signed a maintenance contract with them. if you don't have a maintenance contract, you can just ask for the UBS. 

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

If our suppliers want us to use other tools, we of course will, however, we've been using this solution since 1994. I do not recall if we used anything before that, or what it might have been.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is very straightforward. It's not complex at all. You just install it. You just click on the install button and go ahead and install everything. 

It will also ask if I want a backend repository database. If you say yes, then they will install the database. It is called a Sybase SQL Anyware. Now it is owned by SAP. I don't know exactly what they call it - maybe SAP SQL Anyware or Sybase SQL Anyware. 

In the end, it doesn't take more than five or ten minutes. it's very quick and efficient.

What about the implementation team?

There was no need for any type of consultant or integrator to assist me in the deployment. It's a very simple process.

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

The solution requires a license for each user. If you want to add another user, you just buy another license. It's pretty straightforward. 

It's an expensive product.

What other advice do I have?

I'm not using the latest version of the solution, I'm using the one that came out before version 16.

When we go to specific clients if they would like us to define it or some other product, what we do is we model whatever things that they want, inside those particular tools. Some of the tools don't have the entire modeling capability that PowerDesigner offers.

If a company has a team of people or even one single consultant who has the capability to design business architecture, software architecture, database architecture, or infrastructure architecture, they should go for this particular product. None of the other products offer all of these capabilities in one tool.

This is especially true when you design on one model. The architects creating them can pull into the next model - whatever they want to create. For example, if I'm designing a business process diagram, we will be able to capture some data architecture. When we reach the data architecture part of it, all the data items, whatever they already created in the business architecture, can be pulled. It automatically creates the database from the ER diagram.

I'd rate the solution nine out of ten overall.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
George McGeachie
PowerDesigner and ER/Studio Consultancy and Training Specialist at a tech services company with 1-10 employees
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
The best data modelling tool on the market, and that's nowhere near everything it can handle

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is the way you can extend it and customize it. With most modeling tools, you fit your modeling process to fit the tool. In PowerDesigner, you can make the tool fit the way you want to work."
  • "Pricing for small consultancies needs improvement. They sustain prices to competing tools. The competing tools tend to do special offers. PowerDesigner SAP doesn't pay much attention to the pricing of it and there are no special offers."

What is our primary use case?

As part of my consultancy business I provide training for PowerDesigner users, face-to-face and online. Working directly with clients or as part of subcontracted project work, I provide mentoring for users and customise the tool to fit the client's needs.

The majority of my clients use PowerDesigner for various types of Data Modelling and Database activities, along with Data Governance, Process Governance and Enterprise Architecture.

How has it helped my organization?

I use PowerDesigner myself for managing my own workload. For example, I use a Requirements Model to manage the tips and tricks I plan to include in my blog, and a customised Enterprise Architecture Model to manage my training portfolio. PowerDesigner includes a 'Free Model', which I use to manage and generate my library of PowerDesigner scripts.

What is most valuable?

The architecture of PowerDesigner is designed with extensibility in mind, supporting comprehensive customisation and automation features which allow customers to make the tool fit the way they want to work, embedding those new features directly into the tool itself. For example, the built-in Template Language enabled me to add a feature to export the structure of a Data Model as a JSON-format file for ingestion by a Data Governance tool.

Even if you don't customise or extend PowerDesigner, the tool is still the easiest modelling tool to use, with spreadsheet-like editing capabilities, the ability to link to or replicate (in a managed fashion) objects from a different model. The bi-directional traceability between objects and models is also a key differentiator - whenever you connect two objects together, that connection is visible from both objects (this may sound obvious but, believe me, other tool vendors don't seem to think it's important enough).

What needs improvement?

SAP have invested a lot of time and effort into improving and extending the capabilities of the PowerDesigner Web Portal. Following the most recent release, users can create and edit Conceptual, Physical, Requirements, Business Process, and Enterprise Architecture models using a standard web browser as well using the client software.

I'm looking forward to the day when the Web Portal supports every type of model, including Logical Data Models. I also would like to see better support for NoSQL databases.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using SAP PowerDesigner for fourteen years. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

There are organisations with hundreds of users, very large models, and very large repository databases. It works.

How are customer service and technical support?

The documentation is excellent, and more comprehensive than that supplied by the competition. However, even the best software documentation doesn't support you through your day-to-day modelling activities, which is why I wrote a book "Data Modelling Made Simple with PowerDesigner".

The technical support is very good, utilising SAP' standard customer support portal. I have interacted with technical support at another vendor, where everything is done by email, making it very difficult to keep up-to-date on a case.

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

I have used many modelling tools (possibly more than 10) over the years; when I set up my own consultancy I had a choice of tools to focus on, choosing PowerDesigner. I do also provide some consultancy and customisation for Idera ER/Studio Data Architect.

How was the initial setup?

It's very easy to install. If you want to install a simple repository database, that's really easy as well - SAP provides a licenced copy of SQL Anywhere, which you can deploy anywhere (as the name suggests).

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

The list price for PowerDesigner is competitive for the base Data Architecture features when compared with the major competitors, especially when you consider the features that SAP don't charge for such as the Repository, Web Portal and 'Viewer' software. However, the pricing for small consultancies needs to be improved. The competing vendors often have special offers that make the tool more affordable, which is vital for data management consultancies that have to buy the tools that their clients use.

What other advice do I have?

A powerful modelling solution has to be selected, implemented and managed in the same way as any other enterprise software - before you evaluate tools make sure you've documented your modelling process and the metadata you need to manage. Run a 'Proof of Concept' first - so you actually know what you're letting yourself in for and how much work you may or may not have to do to get it to work the way you want.

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.
KB
Senior Principal IT Architect -- MDM Architecture at a healthcare company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Good property sheet capabilities, and the central repository works well on the company network

Pros and Cons

  • "I like the property sheet capability and the user-defined attributes that you can set up."
  • "Checking-in models to the repository, especially when working remotely, is a slow process than can sometimes have problems with models being corrupted."

What is our primary use case?

I use PowerDesigner to take business requirements and model them from a data modeling perspective. We can then take the result and turn it into a physical model in a database like SQL Server or Oracle.

How has it helped my organization?

This is a tool that facilitates a more cohesive development. From a design and documentation perspective, it makes sure that all of the databases are the correct version for the code base, without running into issues with things being out of sync or out-of-date compared to production or development. 

What is most valuable?

I like the property sheet capability and the user-defined attributes that you can set up.

The central repository is helpful because they have the ability to check-in models when working as part of a larger team. It supports versioning, as well.

What needs improvement?

Checking-in models to the repository, especially when working remotely, is a slow process than can sometimes have problems with models being corrupted. Between the client tool and the repository, the process is very chatty. Consequently, sometimes it takes forever to download a model and if it is corrupted then you won't be able to check it in or out again.

It would be a nice feature if we had the ability to generate a JSON file from a model.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using PowerDesigner for more than 10 years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

If you're just modeling on one computer such as your desktop, or your client's computer, then it is very stable. However, if you are not on your company's network and you are checking in models from a remote location then there can be problems.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I think that the scalability is fine, given that it's for design and development on a project team. On a large project team, we might have 10 or 20 modelers working on it. You don't have thousands or tens of thousands of users, so it scales just fine for what its purpose is.

In my department, we have 10 or 15 users who are data architects or solution architects.

How are customer service and technical support?

We have somebody internally who supports the platform. We have client licensing, so if there is an issue then we can raise a ticket with the vendor, but that is somebody from another group. My personal impression is that technical support is fine.

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

I have used other tools like erwin Data Modeler and they have versioning repositories also, but it seems like their check-in and check-out processes are much simpler and much cleaner. The central repository seems to be a little more stable.

The other advantage to erwin is that you can model right in the diagram, which means less clicking. In PowerDesigner, sometimes there are so many property sheets that we are constantly clicking.

What other advice do I have?

When I began using PowerDesigner, it was an independent product. Since that time, SAP acquired it. It is a very solid product that does both data modeling and business process modeling.

My advice for anybody who is implementing PowerDesigner is to make sure that the central repository for versioning models is on a high-bandwidth network with a solid database backing it up.

In summary, this product gives you all of the features that a modeler would require to produce both logical and physical data models. There really is not a lot that is lacking and my only complaint is about the versioning repository. Of course, this is only a problem when we are working remotely. If there is a large model with perhaps 600 tables and 2,500 attributes, then it is going to be very demanding on bandwidth.

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Carel Van Der Merwe
CEO at Abellard
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
User-friendly, good data analysis and design tools, but better support for open-source databases is needed

Pros and Cons

  • "I do a data-centric design, so for me, the data analysis and design tools are the most valuable features."
  • "In the future, I would like to see data manipulation capability where you can actually write SQL queries and manipulate data from directly within the tool."

What is our primary use case?

I am a computer designer and I consult to various companies. I use PowerDesigner for my own system modeling, which I then share with engineers and ultimately, the customer.

Examples of the types of modeling I do are insurance billing and banking products.

What is most valuable?

I do a data-centric design, so for me, the data analysis and design tools are the most valuable features.

The interface is user-friendly. Because of the graphic nature of it, it helps you to be able to manage complicated systems much easier.

What needs improvement?

Better support for integration with open-source technologies is needed. For example, I try to use open-source databases such as Postgres and MySQL instead of Microsoft, DB2, or Oracle. However, I think it's lacking in capability from the tool to the database.

In the future, I would like to see data manipulation capability where you can actually write SQL queries and manipulate data from directly within the tool.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using SAP PowerDesigner for more than ten years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

PowerDesigner is definitely stable. I have been using it for a long time and I have had no crashes. It just works.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Because SAP is pushing it and they use it as a design tool, I think it's very scalable for collaboration. However, I have no idea in practice because I'm just using it myself.

How are customer service and technical support?

In the time that I have been using this product, it has never been necessary to contact technical support. I think that the help files, along with what you can find using Google, are explanatory enough.

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

The two other products that I have used are erwin Data Modeler and Enterprise Architect. I switched because of the scope and the user-friendliness of the tool. PowerDesigner used in conjunction with SQL Server is quite amazing. They work well together.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward. There's nothing complex about it.

It will take some time to teach yourself how to use the product, but the installation is nothing. It's an hour or two to deploy it.

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

I bought the software outright and do not pay a licensing fee.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I have been looking for a tool to interface seamlessly into an open-source environment, and what I have found to be lacking is a visual database prototype tool. I would like something like, for example, Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio that can access the data instead of just the definitions for it. I am constantly searching for an open-source tool that can do not just modeling, but data manipulations or data definitions in a better way.

What other advice do I have?

I certainly recommend using this product, although it wasn't cheap so cost is a consideration. Price is a complaint that I have for most design tools in the IT world, as most of them are extremely expensive. Corporations and large companies can use them effectively.

For me, the GUI is definitely a pleasure. At the same time, there is a steep learning curve when dealing with bigger and bigger systems. Fortunately, the tool helps with that.

I would rate this solution a seven 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.
Peter Vlekkekn
Team leader and Data / Information Architect at a tech services company with 201-500 employees
Real User
Top 10
A pragmatic tool that's easy to use and offers good data modeling

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution is a very pragmatic tool. It's quite easy to use."
  • "It would be helpful if there were glossary, catalog and governance tools. It would help make it a true end-to-end product."

What is our primary use case?

Often, a customer will want to migrate from another solution onto PowerDesigner. That's how I primarily use the solution: migrating things over to this solution.

We use it to set up the conceptual model. From there, we will take the physical model, where we can start the different DDLs. We will use it to generate the DDLs for the database teams to implement it.

What is most valuable?

The generational DDLs and the graphics are the solution's most valuable aspects.

The solution is a very pragmatic tool. It's quite easy to use.

The solution is very good for data modeling on a conceptual and physical level.

There are a lot of design tools that are very complicated to use, and customers will not use them in detail. I find the solution to be one of the best tools in the range.

What needs improvement?

I don't know of any features the solution is lacking.

It would be helpful if there were glossary, catalog and governance tools. It would help make it a true end-to-end product.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for a while. When I use the solution, the need to use it is driven more from the customer's own needs and not from my own. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I haven't had any feedback from clients that would make me believe that there are stability issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I don't have any direct experience with scaling the solution. It's not something that I handle.

How are customer service and technical support?

We've never contacted SAP's technical support. I don't have any direct experience with them.

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

We occasionally do migrations from MEGA HOPEX to PowerDesigner.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward. It's not complex at all.

However, it depends on how big your environment is. It's difficult, but approximately in one week, you can start creating the capabilities and then it depends on what you want to achieve. 

The problem for the migration part is the setup of the conceptual models and the physical models. If you do the modeling between the conceptual and the physical from a migration point of view, then it becomes more complex because you have the generation of internal keys.

What other advice do I have?

We don't have a business relationship with SAP. We prefer to keep our relationship independent and have no direct relationships with them at the moment.

It's certainly a good strategy to migrate to this solution from another tool, but I wouldn't recommend anyone start using it by trying out a trial-and-error strategy. An organization must think first about the migration strategy if they already have a tool and want to migrate before they start. A trial and error approach will waste a lot of time. 

I'd rate the solution eight out of ten. It's easy to use and you can get good pictures out of it.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
FD
Data Architect at a pharma/biotech company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Complete, robust, and has a very fast reverse engineering process

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is that it is a very fast reverse engineering process. It does a very expansive comparison."
  • "In terms of improvement, the pricing is a bit high."

What is our primary use case?

We were reverse-engineering several databases and doing comparisons.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is that it is a very fast reverse engineering process. It does a very expansive comparison. 

What needs improvement?

In terms of improvement, the pricing is a bit high. 

I didn't investigate whether we could run business process simulations like you can do with erwin's process modeling tool. I know you can do process modeling in PowerDesigner. I just don't know if you could run simulations of the process.

For how long have I used the solution?

I used SAP PowerDesigner for a year. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is very stable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It didn't seem to really need much extendability. For our features, it covered everything out of the box.

There was only one user for this solution, a data architect. 

We did not require any staff for the deployment or maintenance.

How are customer service and technical support?

I did not use technical support.

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

Before PowerDesigner we were using IDERA and erwin. PowerDesigner was better than IDERA, but it's obviously a lot more expensive, so IDERA could be a better value.

With PowerDesigner, I had the whole studio. I had the business process solution. With IDERA there are separate downloads and everything so I only used the data modeling studio.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward. It took around one hour. 

What about the implementation team?

I did the deployment myself. 

What other advice do I have?

If you have the money for it, buy it. If you were budgeted, it would be a worthwhile investment.

I would rate PowerDesigner an eight out of ten. It is very complete and robust. If you're an SAP shop, without question you'd want to use it because you can generate your ETL code as well. That also separates conceptual, logical, and physical modeling really well. I don't know if it's as complete though as erwin's solution. But erwin's solution is evolving and getting better. PowerDesigner has some room to improve, but it's still pretty solid.

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.
Buyer's Guide
Download our free SAP PowerDesigner Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.