At Panoply, we’ve made it our business to be experts in data integration, so we’ve collected a list of the top data integration tools to help you integrate all your data. Unlike Gartner’s data integration tools list, the focus of this list is to show you how you can start generating useful business insights as quickly as possible depending on your use case and budget. Depending on how big your organization is, or how much data you work with on a day-to-day basis, some of these tools will be more helpful than others. Either way, you’ll probably find something useful among the top data integration tools below.
What is Data Integration?
Data integration is key to solving a crucial problem in any organization’s data analytics flow. You may track data related to your business down to the most minute detail, but if every relevant piece of data you need isn’t readily available when you sit down to do your analysis, the quality of your insights could seriously suffer. This may sound like a no-brainer: of course you need to look at all your data when you’re analyzing it. But the reality is that, without good data practices in place, relevant information can quickly become siloed, or fragmented across teams, or just simply forgotten about because no one’s looked at it in a while. If you’re facing these types of problems in your data analytics flow, you might be interested in some of the data integration tools described below.
Take a look at our list, and if you’re still having trouble deciding after reading about all the different tools we’ve gathered here, we put together a TL;DR decision key for how to choose the right data integration tool at the bottom.
1. Informatica PowerCenter
Informatica’s suite of data integration tools includes PowerCenter, which is known for its strong automation capabilities. PowerCenter uses a metadata-based approach to speed data ingestion and processing, and offers automated error logging and early warning systems to help identify data integration issues before they become a serious problem. Informatica supports multiple DBMS technologies, and is a highly-rated company for data integration power users. In general, Informatica’s data integration offerings are quite pricey (in the 6-figure range for licenses), but they’re one of the biggest players in the space for a reason. If you’re looking for a data integration solution for a large, well-resourced organization, Informatica may be your choice.
Informatica PowerCenter price: $2,000/month for the most basic plan
2. Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS)
Microsoft offers SSIS, a graphical interface for managing integrations using MS SQL Server. One of the main selling points for SSIS versus other solutions is its easy-to-use interface, allowing users to deploy integrated data warehousing solutions without having to get involved with writing much--or any--code. The graphical interface allows for easy drag-and-drop ETL for multiple data types and warehouse destinations, including non-MS DBs. SSIS ships with SQL Server, so if you’re a SQL Server user, you already have it. But even those who don’t use SQL Server have been known to buy a license just to get access to SSIS, because it’s just that powerful. SSIS is a great solution for a team with a mix of technical skill levels, as it’s equally effective for ETL ninjas and point-and-click types alike.
SSIS price: $931 - $15,000
Talend’s Open Studio is an open source data integration tool that offers both free and commercial versions. Open Studio works with both on-premise and cloud-based data sources, and offers hundreds of connectors and integrations for commonly used software, including Dropbox, Azure, Salesforce, social media APIs, Azure and AWS. Pricing for Talend is on a per-user basis. If you’re looking for a versatile but not particularly cheap data integration tool, Talend may have the solution for you.
Talend price: $1,170/user monthly or $12,000 annually
Panoply’s data integration solution is simple to use, quick to get started with, and supports a wide range of data sources with pre-built integrations. Panoply can handle a range of data sources, from flat files to S3 buckets and beyond, and makes it easy to integrate data from 3rd party sources such as Google Analytics, Facebook, Instagram and many others. Built on top of Amazon Redshift, Panoply is entirely cloud-based, and our web-based interface makes it easily accessible to members of your team across a wide range of technical skill levels. Panoply’s starting price is $249/month, so it’s one of the least expensive options on this list, making it perfect for smaller organizations without the budget for an extensive data engineering team.
Panoply price: $249/month
5. Oracle Data Integrator (ODI)
Oracle has been in the relational database business for a long time, so it makes sense that their Java-based Data Integrator is one of the top data integration tools out there. ODI was originally developed by Sunopsis and integrated into Oracle’s framework after their acquisition of Sunopsis. Like Panoply, ODI is designed as an ELT tool, meaning that the transformation step is performed at the source or at the target database as needed, taking advantage of the native capabilities of SQL. ODI has a large number of pre-built integrations and connectors, and comes with Lightweight Designer, a web application for managing your data integration tasks.
Oracle Data Integrator price: $0.30/hour or $2,000/month/host for an unmetered contract.
Denodo’s approach to data integration relies on data virtualization, which allows them to connect all sorts of data sources, from on-premise repositories to legacy systems to cloud sources. Denodo’s approach generates searchable metadata for every datasource in the resulting virtualization layer, making it much easier for data seekers to collect and discover the information they need for analysis. Denodo offers a GovCloud Ready version, so if you work with highly regulated / government data, this could be a differentiator for you.
Denodo price: 14-day free trial, with pricing for specific plans available on request.
7. IBM Infosphere
IBM’s Infosphere product line is designed to make data warehousing and business intelligence operations easy. Infosphere is a complete solution, offering ETL, data warehousing (DB2 based, naturally), metadata management and data quality analysis and control tools. Many of the processes associated with Infosphere can be controlled using web-based apps like Metadata Workbench and Business Glossary. Infosphere really shines when it comes to ETL, allowing users to connect to a huge variety of data sources and even handling unstructured data fairly well. Pricing can vary significantly depending on your implementation.
IBM Infosphere price: $120/month for 2 users on a cloud client, and up to $25k + for more intense deployments.
8. Attunity Connect
One of Attunity Connect’s main selling points is its ability to work with a wide range of platforms, including Windows, UNIX, Linux, HP NonStop and Mainframe systems. This might make it particularly attractive to you if your organization has invested heavily in legacy systems and needs to modernize its data workflow without a complete overhaul. Attunity Connect supports a large list of data sources through its integrations, and can handle both data-oriented integration and service-oriented integration. Attunity offers a free trial, but you’ll have to contact them for pricing information.
Attunity Connect price: available upon request
9. Hitachi Vantara
Hitachi Vantara is a relatively new venture that was formed in 2017 by combining Hitachi Data Systems, Hitachi Insight Group and the analytics-focused BI platform Pentaho. In that sense, Hitachi Vantara is similar to IBM and other big players, in that it offers something for every level of data infrastructure, from storage to a full-featured data analytics suite. You might consider Hitachi Vantara if you’re working with IoT data, as the inclusion of the IoT-focused Hitachi Insights Group gives the company years of experience there. Pricing can vary quite a bit depending on your needs, so contact them for a quote if this sounds interesting.
Hitachi Vantara price: available upon request\
10. SAP BODS
SAP offers SAP BusinessObjects Data Services (BODS), a set of tools that allows users to integrate data from both SAP and non-SAP data sources, including relational databases, individual files and big data sources like Hadoop and NoSQL databases. BODS includes a web-based Management Console, from which ETL jobs can be scheduled and managed with continuous reporting on data validation and quality. SAP’s end-to-end metadata tracking will allow you to trace any element of a report back to the data source from which it was pulled, as well as giving you insight into the transformations that occurred along the way that were used to calculate it. SAP makes big solutions for big enterprise clients, so this may be overkill for your organization if you’re not huge. SAP prices Data Services by the number of CPU cores used, so get in contact with the company to determine pricing.
SAP BODS price: available upon request
11. InterSystems Ensemble
InterSystems is another company that’s been in the data game a long time. Founded in 1978, InterSystems launched their Ensemble data integration platform in 2003. Ensemble offers the standard suite of integration tools, but InterSystems has worked to create a productive developer community around its products through InterSystems Atelier, its plug-in for the Eclipse development framework. Another differentiating factor for InterSystems is their expertise in highly regulated healthcare data, so if you’re going to be working with medical records or other sensitive data, buying into the InterSystems ecosystem could make things significantly easier for you. Ensemble licenses are priced according to platform type, so you’ll have to reach out to Intersystems for pricing info if you’re interested.
InterSystems Ensemble price: available upon request
12. Dell Boomi AtomSphere
Originally developed by Boomi and later acquired by Dell, AtomSphere uses a fully graphical interface for drag-and-drop data integration management. Like many other data integration platforms, AtomSphere has an extensive suite of built-in connectors and APIs, but its no-code graphical interface design makes it a good choice for organizations who want the technology to be accessible to a wide range of technical skill levels. AtomSphere integrations are organized as distinct “atoms”, meaning you can set up integrations across multiple components of your data system (on-premise, in the cloud, or in a private cloud, for example) and connect them into a “molecule” for load balancing and high availability. AtomSphere also offers Boomi suggest, an automated system for recommending new integrations based on what other members of the Boomi community have successfully implemented. Pricing starts at $549/month, but can vary based on the complexity of your implementation.
Dell Boomi AtomSphere price: $549/month
13. Astera Centerprise
Astera’s on-premise, Windows-based Centerprise integration platform uses a drag-and-drop graphical interface to make the system accessible to all members of your organization. It’s designed to allow business users to work directly on data integration and management tasks, in theory cutting down the latency of analytics-based business decisions by taking the IT department ouf of the loop. Centerprise is an extensible platform that can work on both legacy and modern systems, and has a number of pre-built connectors for data tasks. It also works well with unstructured data, using the Astera ReportMiner system to extract relevant data from various document types. Pricing is based on the number of licenses and users, subscription being perpetual or periodic, and a mix of other features. Quotes are based on requirements and use-cases.
Astera Centerprise price: Quotes available upon request
How to Choose the Right Data Integration Tool
So now what? You’ve seen the wide range of data integration tools out there, and you’re still wondering how to choose the right data integration tool. Many of these tools have overlapping qualities, so we’ll break it down by key considerations for you:
- If you’re a big organization with big data: try Informatica, Oracle, IBM, SAP or Hitachi
- If you’re looking to maximize ease of use: try SSIS, Panoply, Dell Boomi AtomSphere or Astera Centerprise
- If you’re cost conscious: try Panoply or Dell Boomi AtomSphere
- If you work with government, healthcare or other specialized data: try Denodo, Hitachi Vantara or InterSystems Ensemble