What is Informatica?
INFORMATICA is a Software development company, which offers data integration products. It offers products for ETL, data masking, data Quality, data replica, data virtualization, master data management, etc. Informatica Powercenter ETL/Data Integration tool is the most widely used tool and in the common term when we say Informatica, it refers to the Informatica PowerCenter tool for ETL.
Informatica Powercenter is used for Data integration. It offers the capability to connect & fetch data from different heterogeneous source and processing of data.
For example, you can connect to an SQL Server Database and Oracle Database both and can integrate the data into a third system.
The latest version of Informatica PowerCenter available is 9.6.0. The different editions for the PowerCenter are
- Standard edition
- Advanced edition
- Premium edition
The popular clients using Informatica Powercenter as a data integration tool are U.S Air Force, Allianz, Fannie Mae, ING, Samsung, etc. The popular tools available in the market in competition to Informatica are IBM Datastage, Oracle OWB, Microsoft SSIS and Ab Initio.
Typical use cases for Informatica can be
- An organization migrating from existing legacy system like mainframe to a new database system. So the migration of its existing data into a system can be performed.
- Enterprises setting up their Data Warehouse would require an ETL tool to move data from the Production system to Warehouse.
- Integration of data from various heterogeneous systems like multiple databases and file-based systems can be done using Informatica.
- Informatica can be used as a data cleansing tool.
Informatica is better than its competitors as it offers a wide range of product editions. So the user can opt for a specific edition based upon the requirement. Informatica is constantly featured as Data Integration product leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant listing.
Informatica is available for all the popular platforms. It offers cloud-based services so that with minimal setup an industry can use this tool. Informatica offers real-time data integration, Web services integration, Business to business data integration (B2B), Big data edition, Master Data Management and connectors for social media and Salesforce. Forbes has quoted Informatica as the next Microsoft, this itself reflects the market share Informatica is having over its competitors.
Why do we need Informatica?
Informatica comes to the picture wherever we have a data system available and at the backend we want to perform certain operations on the data. It can be like cleaning up of data, modifying the data, etc. based on certain set of rules or simply loading of bulk data from one system to another.
Informatica offers a rich set of features like operations at row level on data, integration of data from multiple structured, semi-structured or unstructured systems, scheduling of data operation. It also has the feature of metadata, so the information about the process and data operations are also preserved.