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Top 15 Data Integration Tools for a Unified Data View

Author
SPEC INDIA
Posted

August 4, 2023

Data forms the crux of all organizations today and the rate at which it is increasing, by the day, is alarming. With data coming from different sources, in different formats, and in different sizes, it is a tough call to make the most of it. Getting optimal understanding from this huge bulk of data is so rewarding for businesses in terms of future business decisions, enhanced productivity, and an intuitive operational workflow.

Data warehousing services include the process of data integration at its core. Data integration tools are most recommended for collecting data from multiple locations and converting them into an understandable form to be stored in a central repository from where it can be leveraged for insightful business decisions.

There are tools for data integration all over the globe that can be optimally used for handling the volume of data. Selecting the ideal one from the list is a challenging yet important task, which can be made easy by evaluating them with their features. This is what this article attempts to do.

We have detailed the best data integration tools along with their salient characteristics and the key parameters that must be studied while selecting the tool. Before we go into the details, let us understand, in brief, what data integration is, what does a data integration tool do, its types, data integration techniques, and technologies.

What is Data Integration?

Data integration involves combining data residing in different sources and providing users with a unified view of them. The centralized destination could be a data warehouse, database, or any other destination. It offers a 360-degree view of the organizational information and thereby, enhances business value through detailed insights into operational and client requirements.

It consists of different approaches, tools, and architectural models that empower businesses to garner continual availability of data from disparate sources, to adjust to data needs by organizations. This data is used for business intelligence analysis, reporting, or data loading onto an application. Basic data integration functions include raw data ingestion, data orchestration within different data components, and applying data management principles for the security of data.

Data integration tools allow businesses to leverage the complete potential of the data integration process, with its technological abilities. A data integration tool is a software that is designed based on data integration needs and it transforms, maps, and cleans your data. It can be integrated with other data quality tools. It assists in moving datasets from the source to their destination, with effective data transformation techniques and other needed processes.

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Types of Tools for Data Integration

There are different types of data integration platforms that can be used, depending on the requirements:

  • On-premises data integration tools: Installed in a private cloud or local network for integrating data from local/on-premises data sources
  • Cloud-based data integration tools: iPaas-based services for data integration from various sources into a cloud-based environment
  • Open-source data integration tools: Ideal for total control over inhouse data and cost-effective too
  • Proprietary data integration tools: Meant for specified business scenarios that are usually corporate and involve a cost factor

Key Data Integration Techniques and Technologies

With data in such a varied form, there are certain data integration techniques and data integration technologies that are highly recommended:

Data Integration Techniques:

  • Data Consolidation: Combining data from different sources for creation of a centralized data repository
  • Data Federation: Data is distributed and integrated through a virtual database with a simplified data model
  • Middleware Integration: Approach for ensuring a seamless data exchange between various systems
  • Data Propagation: Transfer of data from an enterprise data warehouse to various data marts with needed changes

Data Integration Technologies

  • Extract, Transform, Load (ETL): Extracting data from a source system, transforming it, and then loading it to a target system
  • Enterprise Information Integration: Creating a business view of the data sources offering curated datasets as needed
  • Enterprise Data Replication: Real-time data consolidation and data movement from one database to another with the same schema
  • Data Visualization: Business Intelligence-driven analytics and reporting through dashboards, reports, charts etc.
  • Application Programming Interface: Direct access to data through APIs

Top 15 Data Integration Tools to Look For

  • Informatica
  • SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS)
  • Fivetran
  • Talend
  • Pentaho
  • Azure Data Factory (ADF)
  • AWS Glue
  • Hevo
  • Panoply
  • Boomi
  • Oracle Data Integrator
  • Zapier
  • SnapLogic
  • Jitterbit
  • MuleSoft

Informatica:

Informatica PowerCenter is one of the best data integration tools that offer data masking, ETL, data replication, data quality, and master data management. It is apt for the ingestion, integration, and cleansing of data. Through its cloud-based services, it facilitates the linking of source and target data through multiple connectors that can execute complicated integrations. It is fit for enterprises looking for robust data requirements.

Key Features:

  • Capability to deal with huge volumes of data
  • Keeps updated with the latest technological developments
  • Availability of cloud-based and on-premises deployment
  • Centralized error logging system
  • Inbuilt intelligence for enhanced performance

SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS):

Powered by Microsoft, SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) provides enterprise-level data transformation and data integration solutions. It is ideal for extracting data from disparate sources and loading them into different outputs like databases, demarcated text files or Excel, etc. after transformation activities such as merging, aggregating, cleansing, etc. There are graphical tools and wizards for email messages, data sources, ftp operations, etc.

Key Features:

  • Parallel loading of data to many destinations
  • Seamless integration with other products
  • Complex error handling within dataflow
  • Enriched graphical tools and studio environment
  • Simple management of configuration

Fivetran:

Fivetran is one of the top data integration tools that offer a no-code ingestion solution with automated ELT processes and multiple pre-created connectors. Once the setup is through, you just need to plug in. The entire process is simple and automatic. It facilitates the users in transforming and exporting data with ease through the data models. It streamlines dataflows without the need for complicated custom SQL queries.

Key Features:

  • Reduced latency with faster data movement
  • Real-time and reliable reporting
  • Supports regulatory standards like HIPAA etc.
  • The single setup process for real-time cloud data reporting
  • Seamless integration with Google Cloud, AWS, Azure, Snowflake etc.

Talend:

Talend is considered a comprehensive data connectivity and access platform. As an iPaaS tool, it offers robust graphical tools, pre-created integration templates, and multiple components for making data-driven decisions. There are no-code options for ETL and transformation of data. Talend Open Studio executes ETL tasks and cloud-based or on-premises tasks with the help of Hadoop, NoSQL, and Spark databases.

Key Features:

  • Advanced data management, integration, quality
  • Automatic backup and disaster recovery
  • Increased data protection facility
  • Integrable with all popular cloud providers
  • Easy user interface for data pipeline visualization

Pentaho:

Pentaho Data Integration (PDI) is the data integration tool provided by Pentaho. PDI, known as Kettle, is the component of the Pentaho suite and offers ETL (Extract, Transform, and Load) capabilities to suit your data integration needs. It is easy to learn and implement with a code-free user interface. PDI offers batch processing for data analytics and management. It helps businesses in enhancing analytics and data pipelines.

Key Features:

  • Simple to use and learn for transformations
  • Supports multiple use cases apart from ETL
  • Access to multiple data connections
  • Comprehensive analytics and reporting data
  • Robust database offerings

Azure Data Factory (ADF):

Powered by Microsoft, Azure Data Factory provides comprehensively managed and serverless data integration services with multiple inbuilt connectors for creating a data pipeline. Azure cloud services are all set to modernize your applications to Azure cloud and enjoy the benefits of reduced cost, better performance, robust security, and the ability to respond to changes faster.

Key Features:

  • Drive business and IT-led analytics
  • Simple migration of ETL workloads to the cloud
  • Handling of linked services in numerous pipelines
  • Speedy, accessible with various connectors
  • Simple setup of security protocols for IP addresses

An Interesting Read: Azure Data Factory vs SSIS: Which is a Better ETL Tool?

AWS Glue:

AWS Glue is one of the significant data integration platforms powered by Amazon Web Services. It is a serverless and scalable service that performs ETL and integration jobs with ease, getting data ready for analytics. It natively supports three open-source frameworks, including Apache Hudi, Apache Iceberg, and Linux Foundation Delta Lake. It builds custom visual transformations for defining, reusing, and sharing of ETL logic.

Key Features:

  • Writing and sharing of business-specific logic
  • Serverless data integration service
  • Create complicated ETL pipelines with simple scheduling of jobs
  • DevOps best practices with GitHub integration
  • Offer high-quality data across data pipelines and data lakes

Hevo:

Hevo is one of the well-liked, comprehensive data pipeline and data integration platforms that empower businesses to seamlessly extract data from different sources to the warehouse and then keep it ready for detailed analytics via robust data workflows and models. It is a no-code, bidirectional data pipeline that is created for modernized ETL, and ELT needs, to offer an insightful experience.

Key Features:

  • Data replication for near real-time processes
  • Automatic data pipelines with multiple pre-created connectors
  • Native and custom integrations
  • Combines data storage silos in a single location
  • Automatically searches for schema for newer datasets

Panoply:

Panoply is one of the most extensive tools for data integration that is cloud-based and provides multiple code-free integrations for loading and analyzing raw data from different sources. There is a centralized data warehouse that stores data, later related to popular BI tools for detailed analytics and interactive dashboards. It supports multiple types of apps like accounting apps, CRM apps, advertising apps, BI apps, eCommerce apps, etc.

Key Features:

  • Faster and effective runtime
  • Enhanced performance of data models
  • Automated detection of data types
  • Easy-to-use and implement tool
  • Pre-created SQL queries for workflow optimization

Boomi:

Powered by Dell, Boomi is a popular choice for data integration to be leveraged in the cloud, on-premises, or as a hybrid mode. Its no-code/low-code interface, visual designer, and pre-configured components are highly effective in integrating platforms smoothly and offering great results. It has around 2000 inbuilt endpoint connections that help clients in lessening the time they must consume in creating bespoke connections.

Key Features:

  • Easy to use, drag-and-drop interface
  • Utilized by organizations of all sizes
  • Ideal for real-time data integration
  • Architecture fit for faster connections
  • Lightweight, dynamic run-time engine

Oracle Data Integrator:

Oracle Data Integrator (ODI) is one of the top data integration tools that offer data integration solutions on-premises and in the cloud. It has the capability to manage huge data volumes with equivalent performance. The cloud version has a browser-based interface and pre-created connectors for SaaS-based applications. It gels well with other Oracle-based systems.

Key Features:

  • Offers data profiling and governance abilities
  • Seamless integration of new technologies through modules
  • Auto-detection of data malfunctioning and inbuilt amendments
  • Idea for organizations wanting to manage huge volumes of data
  • AI and ML competencies

Zapier:

Zapier is an exclusive tool that offers competent data integration capabilities as a no-code solution. There are multiple app integrations that are feasible through this tool. It has a user-friendly online interface that helps in the automation of business workflows, by easily connecting the services and apps. It saves time and effort, facilitating users to focus on their own work.

Key Features:

  • Support for thousands of apps and software
  • Easy integration with known applications
  • Automation of business workflows through app integrations
  • Activity dashboard
  • Access controls/permissions

SnapLogic:

SnapLogic is one of the best data integration tools, offering self-service competencies and effective integration with IoT devices. It is a PaaS-based tool that offers speedier connections and persistent updates of data with analytics. It makes the best use of AI for creating automation. There is a drag-and-drop visual interface that needs no coding requirements.

Key Features:

  • Supports Big Data, IoT, and cloud-based applications
  • Integrates well with NoSQL and Hadoop data sources
  • Ideal for non-tech resources that need a no-coding tool
  • Visualization of ETL jobs through graphs and charts
  • Effective event-driven and real-time processing

Jitterbit:

Jitterbit is an ideal tool for enterprises that require a single tool for their complete data cycle. As a cloud integration platform, it connects data, systems, and applications in a flexible and robust manner. It merges the capabilities of APIs and integration to offer innovative results, using AI to automate endpoints. It simplifies collaboration between on-premises, cloud, and SaaS-based applications.

Key Features:

  • A vast library of pre-created templates and workflows
  • Easy creation and connection of APIs
  • Seamlessly connects with AI components for effective data integration
  • Around 300 pre-created templates for faster execution
  • Active Directory integration

MuleSoft:

MuleSoft is a known data integration software application that assists organizations in connecting applications, devices, and data across cloud-based and on-premises environments. The MuleSoft AnyPoint platform provides tools and services with the MuleAPI approach. MuleSoft DataWeave is a robust tool for querying and data transformation within the tool.

Key Features:

  • Unified view from on-premises, SaaS software
  • Faster development with a template-driven approach
  • Real-time or batch data integration for huge volumes of data
  • Smooth flow of data between disparate systems
  • Easy connection with public and private cloud information assets
Wrapping It Up

As we go through the list of top data integration tools, it is more confusing to select the apt one for your organization. It needs analysis of certain parameters, as under, to finalize the data integration tools:

  • Learning curve and availability to skilled resources
  • Capacity to manage and scale future needs
  • Target user groups
  • Cost of ownership, licensing, and usage fees
  • Support and maintenance availability
  • Data protection systems and security aspects
  • Real-time access to data from anywhere, anytime
  • Support for source expansion
  • Type and size of data to be integrated
  • Frequency of data transfer and integration
  • Cloud-based support

As a competent data warehouse and data integration solutions provider, we guarantee a high-performing data warehouse through our robust and all-inclusive data warehouse and data integration services, empowering analysts to collect business intuitions from operational data.

The combined process of data integration software is well implemented by our data experts as a successful process of blending data from different sources into a sole, integrated view. Our robust data integration solutions streamline the complex and tiresome procedure of integrating data that is bursting on a persistent basis, via detailed reporting databases and the recognized Extract-Transform-Load (ETL) process.

Hiring a data warehouse consultant/ data integration solutions expert from SPEC INDIA is a profitable and easy process. Our data-related functionalities assist the flexible engagement of data warehousing specialists who have had broad implementation understanding of intricate data-related projects.

Our consultants assist projects in executing their policies with full technical as well as strategic support. Get in touch with us for an unparalleled data integration software experience!

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Author
SPEC INDIA

SPEC INDIA, as your single stop IT partner has been successfully implementing a bouquet of diverse solutions and services all over the globe, proving its mettle as an ISO 9001:2015 certified IT solutions organization. With efficient project management practices, international standards to comply, flexible engagement models and superior infrastructure, SPEC INDIA is a customer’s delight. Our skilled technical resources are apt at putting thoughts in a perspective by offering value-added reads for all.

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