SAP PowerDesigner OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

SAP PowerDesigner is the #1 ranked solution in our list of top Metadata Management tools. It is most often compared to erwin Data Modeler (DM): SAP PowerDesigner vs erwin Data Modeler (DM)

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 is also known as Sybase PowerDesigner.

SAP PowerDesigner Buyer's Guide

Download the SAP PowerDesigner Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: August 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."

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Fraven Ang
Manager, Data Architecture at DFS Singapore Pte Ltd
Real User
Top 20
Ability to work on a single repository is great; web portal enables view from the browser perspective

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… more »

Pros and Cons

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

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

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.

Pros and Cons

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

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…
Learn what your peers think about SAP PowerDesigner. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: August 2021.
534,299 professionals have used our research since 2012.
MN
Chief Architect at Imagic Consultancy Limited
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
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 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…
George McGeachie
PowerDesigner and ER/Studio Consultancy and Training Specialist at a tech services company with 1-10 employees
Real User
Top 20
The best data modelling tool on the market, and that's nowhere near everything it can handle

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.

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

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.

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 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…
Carel Van Der Merwe
CEO at Abellard
Real User
Top 20
User-friendly, good data analysis and design tools, but better support for open-source databases is needed

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.

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 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.
Peter Vlekkekn
Team leader and Data / Information Architect at a tech services company with 201-500 employees
Real User
Top 20
A pragmatic tool that's easy to use and offers good data modeling

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.

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 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.
FD
Data Architect at a pharma/biotech company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20Leaderboard
Complete, robust, and has a very fast reverse engineering process

What is our primary use case?

We were reverse-engineering several databases and doing comparisons.

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 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.
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Buyer's Guide
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