We are working with telecoms to automate workloads. The use cases include automation from inception to activation. Some use cases also deal with professional services.
Our use cases are reflected in the cloud-based Workload Automation.
Download the Automic Workload Automation Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: December 2022
The modern enterprise needs to orchestrate a complex, diverse landscape of applications, platforms and technologies. Workload automation can prove a critical differentiator, but only if it provides intelligent automation driven by data analytics.
The IT landscape is currently more complex than ever: Islands of automation are a barrier to scaling and standardizing your workload activities. Processing errors are common because of manual handoffs. And the lack of an end-to-end view of the business process make inefficiencies and problems difficult to resolve. In addition to this, you are operating 24x7 and cannot find maintenance windows to upgrade your infrastructure in order to innovate.
CA Automic Workload Automation gives you the agility, speed, visibility and scalability needed to respond to the constantly changing technology landscape. It centrally manages and automates the execution of business processes end-to-end; across mainframe, cloud and hybrid environments in a way that never stops—even when doing an upgrade to the next version.
Automic Workload Automation was previously known as Automic Dollar Universe.
ING, Adidas, 84.51, ESB
We are working with telecoms to automate workloads. The use cases include automation from inception to activation. Some use cases also deal with professional services.
Our use cases are reflected in the cloud-based Workload Automation.
The ease of deployment makes it easier when it comes to the development and testing of the automations.
It integrates well with the CICD pipeline.
We would like a way to test our cloud-based automations on-premises, and then migrate them to the cloud after they have been tested, without needing an additional license. As developers, this would help us.
In the future, I would like to see a system where each developer works on their own changes, and they are submitted to a controller. At that point, the controller has the option to accept or reject changes from each of the developers.
I have been working with Automic Workload Automation for about four years.
I use many tools in combination with this product including Jenkins, GitHub, and GitLab.
This is a very stable product and personally, I have not had any issues with it. Our vision includes continuing to use it in the future.
Automic Workload Automation is scalable. I have experience with larger companies in different regions and I can say that a high number of IT staff, between 70% and 85% use automation tools.
For this product specifically, there are between 40 and 45 users.
Personally, I do not have experience with technical support. However, I think people in our team have been in contact with them.
We did not have a plan to adopt this product and didn't even discover it right away. Rather, we followed the new technologies and came up with new strategies that led us to it.
The initial setup is easy.
The first time we installed it, the process took between 30 and 45 minutes. After that, we replicated the installation and to deploy it takes no more than 10 minutes.
My team is responsible for the deployment. One person is enough for the task. For the implementation from end-to-end, it should take between six and twelve hours.
There are no costs in addition to the standard licensing fees.
This is absolutely a product that I recommend.
I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
We are a system integrator and Automic is one of the workload automation products that we implement for our clients.
This tool provides a great versatility of options for effective digital business automation. Integration with different platforms, ERP systems, business application, microservices, big data.
We are supporting multiple customers and their environments. Some of the most common uses are : SAP, SAP BW, Avaloq, FileTransfers, FTP/SFTP, Datastage, Informatica
It has its own scripting language which allows you to be even more flexible with the objects and create your own unique environment. You can easily have a single object with smartly defined parameters (variables) and reuse that object in many different workflows, passing different values to achieve different purposes.
The vendor support is really bad and should be improved. The engineers taking our vendor tickets are not knowledgeble enough of the product and occasionally not helpful at all. Tickets usally are bouncing back and forth with very little helpful information or investigation from their side for a issue we are experiencing/reporting.
I have been working with Automic Workload Automation for at least five years.
This is a stable product and we plan on continuing to use it in the future.
Automic Workload Automation is scalable, although it can improve on the database side. When it comes to workload automation tools, the database is always at the back of the list.
My team has approximately 25 people in it, and we have teams in America and Germany as well.
The technical support is slow, and the people that take the cases are not really familiar with the product. Most of their answers are simply "Did you check the official documentation? Did you check the knowledge base articles?"
If we are at the point that we are asking for support, most times, we would have already checked everything place that we can.
Basically, they should be faster and more knowledgeable.
In our team, we are using four workload automation tools including Automic, Control-M, Autosys, and TWS/IWS. We are supporting all of them but I concentrate on Automic because it's the one that I like the most.
The initial setup is straightforward. It is pretty easy to install this product anywhere, regardless of whether it is an on-premises or cloud-based deployment. Usually, deployment takes four hours at the most.
I have done the deployment several times, myself.
This is a good product and I can recommend it.
I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
The Zero Upgrade feature is the most valuable.
Its dashboard can be improved. In version 12, they have already moved to a web-based interface from a UI. We are looking into this feature now. We are also looking for available APIs that we can use to interface the engine into our other systems.
There should be a subservice facility that we can use to interface with Microsoft Teams and send out authorization on job executions. We have seen a feature like this in other products that we are looking into.
I have been using this solution for more than five years.
It is stable. We are not experiencing any major issues.
It is scalable. Around 30 people are using it in our organization.
We previously had platinum support, and we were very happy with their technical support. After we moved away from platinum support, their technical support is just not that good.
We only had MSTs previously. We shifted to Automic Workload Automation because we wanted to integrate SAP and other business requirements.
We are now looking into other products outside Automic because of its cost. We have shortlisted BMC Control-M, Stonebranch, ActiveBatch, and IBM.
The initial setup was complex because we have multiple endings running in every country that we manage. We also have an active-active setup and two instances running on one machine. We use it to widen our range so that we can have two engines running on the same machine.
It is currently deployed on a private cloud and on-premises. We have around ten people to maintain this solution.
It costs too much. That's why we are now looking at other products.
I would rate Automic Workload Automation a six out of ten.
We are a reseller and solution provider, and this is one of the products that we provide for our customers.
This is a conversion product, and we use this solution to assist customers who are converting from another product. Our primary focus is one-for-one migration, bringing it up to the next level and getting it ready for the next phase.
This solution saves our organization time, in terms of management. It is also more systematic and gives us more control. It is easy to learn.
The most valuable feature of this solution is the scheduler.
The workflow is object-oriented.
The source code is centralized, rather than being deployed to the individual servers.
There are always ways that technical support can be improved.
I would like to see more types of Calendars in the next release of this solution.
In terms of stability, so far so good. We have not encountered any bugs in this solution.
Our proposal matches the average, so we have not needed the solution to grow.
The plan is to increase usage once this solution is stabilized. We are hoping that this is in the near future.
I have worked with technical support, and we are pretty happy with them. The response time is long, but they have been ok so far.
Prior to this, we used other products from the CA Automation family, but with different branding. We used the AutoSys d-Series Edition.
With respect to migration or conversion projects, the compilation is done with a conversion factory. This is done on-site, and after that, there is testing and production. The deployment time for a project is between three and six months.
Many of the things are handled by the CA Compilation team. We are on-site, assisting the technical team. We migrate across from the remote site to the client site.
There is a lot of coordination that has to be done with the customer. The environment, including the data, has to be ready.
Two or three people are required, on-site, for the deployment. One of them is an architect and two of them are engineers.
Once this solution is deployed, the customer takes over the operation, including the maintenance.
When our customers have a lot of manual processes, the automation will reduce the number of human errors that occur. This will reduce the cost.
I began using this product just after it was acquired by CA. We have four to five people who have been trained on CA Workload Automation across all of the developing nations.
My advice to anybody who is implementing this solution is to carefully look at the environment. Some manual processes can be converted, but some are best left done using human manual input. If this is the case then you have to convert these into a scripted document image.
I would rate this solution a six out of ten.
We are currently doing a migration from Dollar U to ONE Automation for 815 applications for one of our clients.
We have used ONE Automation to make a platform for one of our clients using two clustered Oracle Databases and web services, with an Automation Engine.
We made another platform for backup using Data Guard and two web services with two Automation Engines and one Oracle Database, so if there is a problem with the first platform, functionality can pass directly to the second platform.
I have found new methods for converting scripts from Dollar U to ONE Automation. For example, I take the dynamic library from Dollar U and put it in the dynamic binary library in ONE Automation. This enables us to use Dollar U scripts in ONE Automation.
It's easy for integration, not like BMC Control-M. It's clear when there are errors or bugs. We can just go to the logs and read the error code and find what needs to be done.
There were many bugs in the last version. For example, we could only use capital letters for searching for agent names. Also, we had a problem with ONE Automation where we couldn't use the PGA and SGA in Oracle Databases for resolving RAM because the last version didn't have this capability.
We can use ONE Automation with many other applications like ServiceNow and Jenkins. This is the scalability for me, that there are many possibilities with this tool. We can use it with many other technologies. It is really good.
The company where we are doing this work is looking at expanding into banking, and that would happen in many countries. Of course, this would give us more work with Automic Workload Automation. The objective is that all applications for this client are within ONE Automation.
I do not contact CA technical support but my colleague does for many bugs and other security and system requirements. We need to change many things in our platform for security needs. We open cases with ONE Automation to help us with the skills for integration, development, and administration. Tech support has been helpful.
I used Dollar U. There are really big differences. Dollar U has decentralized methods and tools. ONE Automation has centralized tools. It is really strong and really easy to use ONE Automation. For example, for organizing, for creating applications and clients, for manipulating the agents, for the servers, it's really easy. You just put the agent in the server application with the LI and it directly connects with the Automation Engine Server. It's amazing.
The initial setup required us to do an analysis of the Dollar U environment for conversion to ONE Automation. We have special tools for converting the session and the UPROCs from Dollar U to jobs and workflow in ONE Automation. We have developed macros with VBA to convert all the information in Dollar U to ONE Automation.
When we start an integration for the first time, we create the client and we attach the agent for the application, because every application is a "client" for us. We use Red Hat Servers for this. Of course, we use Windows servers, but 80 percent are Red Hat as well as iX and HPE servers.
Each application takes a different amount of time. For example, there are applications for factoring or financial applications. We need one year for their implementation. Smaller applications take a few months. We start with the small applications and then move to the more difficult applications. We have a team working on this and every person has ten or 15 applications to do.
You should know configuration and scripting in Shell because Automic only gives binary, which you can adapt for your environment. You can the Automic with PostgreSQL, but it's not good. I prefer to use it with Oracle Database and to use clusters to create a solid environment.
I have installed many packages, such as for WebSphere, for chat bots, for SSH, and for using programs like Excel, and Word. I'm trying to learn many things about development with ONE Automation.
It's a good tool, really strong. It needs some new features, it needs to evolve, but it's really good. I really like it. And now, with Broadcom in the picture, it's a strong company.
We use it for assisted process change, and we are using it for basic operating system-level UPROCs or jobs, and there are certain jobs that it runs for the net backup.
The solution has been here for the past ten years, there is a definite business value-add; the batch/shell scripts running in the environment can be controlled centrally, SAP Processing; Backup Jobs and many more with no or minimal interventions.
In general, in any environment where there are more than 500 or 600 servers, each server will have settings and scripts doing their jobs, moving files, etc. There may be a bunch of scripts that run in a workflow. If you don't have a centralized tool for workload automation, it becomes problematic down the line because, as the environment grows, as IT grows in any organization, the number of scripts grows accordingly. If you have a centralized workload automation tool, you can completely control such jobs, or file transfers, or any job that is critical to a specific application/server. So it provides ease in handling scripts.
Also, it helps with manpower. If you have server admins to take care of those scripts, you need more admins, of course. But if you have one such workload automation tool, a single person can control, monitor, and see the behavior of the scripts in the environment: How well they are running and, if they are failing, which scripts are failing. That's the business value-add that I see in having any workload automation tool, like CA Dollar Universe, which is the one we have here.
The most valuable feature is the one for SAP batch processing. It's not just ordinary job processing. There are certain other mid-level workload automation tools which can handle the OS level, but SAP is something which is really very critical. Automic stands out from the ordinary tools because handling SAP processes is absolutely easy with it. Integrating SAP applications with Dollar U is very easy. It's just a few considerations and there you go. You can initiate your processing.
We are currently at version 6.7.41. One improvement area that I can see would be a centralized licensing part. I've heard that has been already taken care of in the latest version. I'm not sure how true that is, but that's one thing that should be there: centralized licensing.
Another issue is that at times there are certain jobs that are triggered one after another. It would be helpful to have a more user-friendly way of seeing how those jobs are connecting from one server to another. Suppose there is a workflow that is running between ten and 15 servers. It's always challenging to figure out which job is connected to which job on which server, for a newbie, if you haven't designed it. That has to be more user-friendly where you can see the complete workflow of a process or a job.
I haven't seen any issues regarding stability.
It's very scalable. It's easy. You just add on the resources and you are there. The management server doesn't get loaded up, it doesn't have to process anything. That makes it cheaper as well. Scalability is pretty easy.
On a scale of one to 10, with 10 being highest, I would rate technical support a nine. So far, I haven't gone unanswered for any of the queries, except one. Their response time is pretty fast. It depends on how severe the case is. If it's just a general query, they respond within a day. If it's really critical, where your business is impacted, they respond within half-an-hour or an hour. I have had a really good experience with the tech support.
I have been an admin on other tools as well. I was a contributor to and implemented BMC Control-M.
I haven't done the initial setup, but I think it's pretty straightforward from what I have seen in the documents. My feeling is it should not take more than an hour or two to get it up and running. If everything is ready, your database is there, and you have the right amount of resources on the server, it shouldn't take more than an hour or two hours.
In terms of an implementation strategy:
Those are the things that need to be factored in before beginning the installation. The accessibility part can be dealt with later, but the resourcing of the database on the server and the management server have to be spec'd out before.
I understand that AWA is cheaper than Control-M, but I'm not certain about the numbers.
What makes it stand out from the competitors I have seen is it has distributed architecture. If you look at BMC Control-M vs Automic Workload Automation, the brain is the central, enterprise management server. That's where all the jobs reside. Every day, a new set of jobs loads onto the agent, and then the agent executes. If the central server is down, there will be no jobs executing across the environment.
However, when it comes to CA Automic, it has a distributed architecture which means all the logic, all the jobs, reside on the agent itself. Irrespective of whether the management server is running or not, your jobs will execute in a timely way. The only challenge could be that you will not be able to see their outcome. You will not be able to monitor them. That could be a challenge. But again, at least the jobs are executing in a timely fashion, as they're supposed to, in your environment.
It's the same for any end tool we implement: Be clear with the requirements. Apart from that, everything is pretty smooth and straightforward. You can look at the tool and understand where things are going. There is no rocket science that you need to be worried about. But you do need to be aware of what you're doing.
Regarding the number of staff for maintenance, it depends on how exactly you want to maintain it. We always keep all the UPROCS, all the jobs that we have in an environment, on a centralised server as a backup. The maintenance is up to the individual organization, how robust or how limited they want it to be on the day of a crisis.
In our organization, we have a team of nine people handling the tool. We have more than 12,000 tasks that are scheduled to run each day, and more than 100,000 job iterations happen every day. It's actually a really big environment. We have more than 1,400 nodes connected to it, and we are bringing in 300 more. At each of those additional nodes we are expecting four to five jobs. So that will add about 1,500 tasks. The number of iterations expected is still unknown.
Right now, we execute jobs in three regions: Europe, Asia-Pacific, and America. We are only using AWA in the European region. We are taking it into Asia as well. That's the next expansion of the tool.
The admin roles include handling new requests for creation of the tasks and sessions, as well as the changes to existing jobs, including notification, and daily scheduling. In addition, there is the daily maintenance part. We check for jobs that are failing every day, why they are failing, and we will try to mitigate the problem. It could be the agent needs to be purged, or the agent is not running, or the credentials that were given for a specific job are not there anymore. Those are the sorts of checks we do on a daily basis to keep it healthy.
I rate Automic Workload Automation at eight out of ten. What comes to mind when I consider that rating is the distributed licensing, that every server has to be licensed individually. The second is the workflow of jobs connected on multiple servers.
We use it to automate infrastructure and business. We do quite a lot of different stuff: sometimes orchestration, sometimes more automation.
It saves a lot of time and mistakes, because we used to do a lot of manual work. Since we added automation a little bit over a year now, it has enhanced our daily work, especially for the very repetitive tasks that we did.
We can use anything on the server, like PowerShell and flash. We can use whatever language that will make things easier.
Depending on the properties of the jobs and pre- and post-conditions, there needs to be more flexible and richer conditions that I can check for. This would be a great addition.
It is stable 99% of the time.
Our issues have been mostly because of the Tomcat interface. The other interface, the fat client, has been stable until now, and looks good.
It is very scalable.
Technical support is very good.
If the environment is straightforward, then the initial setup will be straightforward.
It saves us from making a lot of mistakes. It is now easier to align complex things.
Automic is gaining much more ground than other products. The other one is the BMC, but it is not as good.
The main use case at the moment is to automate workloads. We have more than one automation tool, but the workload automation tool was chosen to do automatic manual workloads. That is why it is called workload automation.
We are automating very manual, robust tasks, which are very time consuming and not error-free. This is our first main use case, and we do this also to glue some holes. For example, we orchestrate backups, where we take one system down to start a backup, etc. In addition, we are processing big data from the Hadoop platform and Informatica systems, and we orchestrate using scripts. We call it simple scheduling services, where we simply schedule batch jobs from scripts.
For our organization, this was a very big project. The issue of automation is a hot topic now, and that is where workload automation fits in.
It provides time savings on manual tasks. For example, imagine an operator is getting a task, but it would take him three to four hours. Therefore, he is slow to even pick up this task. Now, when we automate these task, it is just one click for the user, or sometimes it is even triggered on its own. Then, this task is already solves the problem.
Also, we impose some standards for backup and restore operations. We have some standard naming conventions, where previously the operator would have to restart a VM. When he did, he would have to remember about setting a specific name. Therefore, we imposed this standardization. Our three main valuable features that we have imposed through automation:
The most valuable feature is the automation. There is the possibility to understand its different components. It is very open, where you can run different scripts or program scripts in PowerShell or Bash. Thus, it is open for various languages, and not closed to Java, where some other tools might be.
I do not think it is as valued as it should be because it is not user-friendly. There could be a better user interface for end users. They should make it more intuitive, not based on Java.
They should also fix all the bugs.
We do use technical support. Unfortunately, that is the bad side about working with Automic. With every new version, things that would previously work, Automic breaks them. So, we have to report the new bugs. Therefore, every time when we patch the system, there is usually a new bug or a feature that was working, then it stops working.
In general, the technical support's response is very quick. Maybe we are just a new customer, and we are on special care. However, if there is a major issue in production, then we simply get a call within five to 10 minutes, a call, not an email. They call directly to my desk.
We were previously doing manual work. There was an initiative coming from the senior management to automate more things, which is how this came about. When I joined the project, this product was already selected. I had no real say about the product. I had to learn it, because I was given CA Automic Workload Automation, and told this is what you are going to implement.
I was responsible to design and build the system. The project was an agile project, which was a pilot, because our company was not very agile.
While we are a public institution, we are very old school. This was a first attempt at doing new things. I was the only technical resource that had the proper knowledge and skills. Therefore, I was the one who designed the system and build it.
The initial setup was complex, because of our specific requirements.
The installer that had been given to us by Automic (now CA) was installing too many things that our security would not like. So, we went through a manual procedure, which was very hard and complex. What we did was, I wrote a script that ran through all the procedures. Then, at the end of installation, where it took me three weeks to write the script, the installation took only five minutes.
I love it, and I am happy working with it. Though, it was hard to comprehend at the beginning.
Do not be scared with the user interface. It is not that hard. If you like to script, this is the tool for you.
We use Automic Workload Automation to schedule the batch processes for all systems within the University of Colorado. We use file transfer jobs to send or receive files with each incoming file authenticated through Automic. We code Automic jobs to update PeopleSoft run controls automatically, continuously run processes for real-time results, bounce application servers, and we notify all process failures through text and email.
In 2014, we saved over 9000 hours on an annualized basis when we removed the manual updating of Run Controls. Removing manual updating also improves efficiencies, productivity, and human errors.
Another example of how Automic has improved how we function is the ability to automate our abend notifications. This ability has improved our work/life balance during the weekends when we are on-call. Instead of being tasked with monitoring the system during the weekend, the abend notifications are automated to send a text to our cell phones. That enables us to go about our daily lives and only log on if something breaks. This has also enabled us to staff 24/5 instead of 24/7, saving two FTEs who would otherwise work 12-hour shifts throughout the weekend to just monitor batch.
Currently, we are in the process of rebuilding our student information system jobs in Automic. The reconstructed jobs will use Automic capabilities and coding to automatically update college terms, financial aid years, census dates, etc which will fully automate our data processing. The code uses a calendar and variable tables to update the run control values as necessary depending on the date. Fully automating term changes will eliminate 90% of our ticket load and remove the manual updating of 7000 Peoplesoft run controls per year. This will also improve our customer's end experience, they will no longer be required to submit cumbersome tickets detailing run control changes.
An important feature is the ability to modify PeopleSoft Run Controls at run-time. We run all of the batch processes for the Student Information Systems, Finance, and HCM, which use Peoplesoft in our shop. The ability to modify dates, query names, batch numbers, etc., is paramount to my team. The ability of the Automic script/coding is also a valuable asset as it provides a way for us to meet any customer's requirements, no matter what it is, we can do it with Automic scripting.
There are some scripting elements that could be added like being able to reset a task in a schedule through Automic scripting.
Also, some of the things we don't use are mainly because we don't know how to use them. Hands-on training can be expensive, so we find other ways to work around things to forgo the hands-on training. It is also an issue because we are a Linux shop and most trainers are Windows-based.
The product itself is very stable; we have not encountered stability issues with it.
No issues with scalability.
The technical support team is fantastic. Any ticket submitted is worked on quickly and professionally. The team is very good about following up to make sure the solution worked and, if it didn't, they will work with you until the issue is resolved. They are hands-down the most efficient support team I have come across and they are the one team that will always provide results.
We ran our Finance, HCM, and CIW processes through Unicenter. I don't believe that Unicenter was very user-friendly and they found it difficult to integrate with other applications.
We ran the Student Information System batch on the mainframe using CA7 as the batch scheduler. We switched from Unicenter to Automic and from the mainframe to Automic, mainly because Automic can integrate easily with any other application or service. When we got off of the mainframe and moved the student side to PeopleSoft, it only made sense to use Automic as the batch scheduler.
The initial setup of Automic is simple and easy. As long as it can talk to what it needs to talk to, there are no issues with the installation.
Initial setup was with a support representative. I can't say the level of expertise because I was not there when it was first installed. I can say that since I have taken over this department, any contact with Automic support has always met or exceeded expectations and any rep has always been well skilled at most things, other than Peoplesoft.
The overall cost of Automic is minimal compared to what we can do with the product. Our return on investment far outweighs the cost each year.
Certain licenses can be a bit expensive. The PeopleSoft agents, in particular, are a bit pricey. We are using agent groups in our development environment which allows us to switch between the different Peoplesoft instances without having to change the host names in the jobs and without the need for multiple PS licenses.
I believe we looked at BMC and other CA products but chose Automic because of its ability to easily integrate with other applications and services, and because of how user-friendly it is.
It is hands-down the best product out there. You might find others that are cheaper, you might find others that sound better and cost more, but in the end, the best automation product on the market is Automic. Save yourself some time and start with the best first. It is easy to install, easy to maintain, reliable, stable, user-friendly, and versatile. One can achieve great automation with Automic.
We want to automate our processes. Before, we used to execute more than more than 250 jobs manually, along with a number of things related to backups, and putting files on FTP.
Previously, in IT Operations, this function was used to induct resources. It's a type of training platform for them to understand operations as an entry point. We used to take four to six months to train a resource. After the implementation of Automic, it hardly takes a month to develop a resource.
Most of the monotonous types of jobs have been automated. We have been able to train our resources very quickly, so we can put their focus on high value things. Also, it has created a knowledge base, which has helped us to pinpoint problems. After a month, we found out that seven out of ten times, there was a specific problem. So, we fixed these issues, optimized them, and now, we have a situation where we are running with zero errors.
The best thing about the product is its agility.
It is a complete solution: people, process, and technology.
CA needs to add a few more products in this suite, because right now they have automation, DR switching, and the third one is relief management. They could add change and release management.
It's pretty stable. After implementation, there hasn't been a single event where we shifted our jobs for the day from automated to manual.
We haven't seen any issues related to scalability.
The tech support trained our resources to be self-sufficient.
Automic has been a Greenfield project. We were the first implementation and a number of banks went with this solution after us.
The implementation was not straightforward, though it is not that complex. During installation, some database elective issues popped up. These took some time to fix, but after some back and forth communication, these issues were resolved.
A few things were out-of-the-box. However, during the implementation, a number of things popped up which required coding, implementation, or electrical work, and the Automic team was able to fix these very quickly.
The implementation people were very good, along with the experience. They know their job. They know the product. They understood the requirements very well. It took three to four months time to rollout this project into production.
This is a support system for us, not our core business, so we purchased this product inexpensively. Later on, we came to a very good deal, but it took us three years to finalize.
We recently purchased the whole suite.
Anything that can be automated, should be automated. The world is changing and new things are coming out a daily basis. These things take away your day-to-day spend, give you ample time to look forward, and streamline your workflow.
Allowed us to almost fully automate our batch schedule and to provide our Operations team with a single interface for monitoring batch and automated system processes.
Our primary use case would just be our production batch processing.
It's been great. We've had a few bumps in years past but it's been rock solid since the last couple versions. We also perform all internal file transfers and many of our company's external file transfers.
We have a lot of jobs that have to run, and it's easy to see what the status is.
We've been using it for around 15 years now. We're very comfortable with it, that's probably the biggest thing. I've been using it for a long time, so the comfort level is there. I don't see any reason I would want to switch to anything else. It does everything we need. Actually, we're not even utilizing it to its fullest ability. We're probably a couple versions behind what the latest version is. And there are a lot of features we want to get to, to start utilizing, but it all takes time and does require the correct resources available.
The usability of the user interface. It just makes sense and it is easy to see the flow of the processes. We have been slowly migrating to the web-based user interface, which has some of the older features missing, but also introduces additional new features.
In terms of additional features, it's probably stuff they already have available that we haven't started utilizing yet.
I really like the idea of the Zero Downtime Upgrade, but really excited to be able to use the centralized agent upgrade. That's probably one of our biggest pain points right now. When we go to a new version, the agents have to all be upgraded. We have several thousand agents and that's a painful process because it's slow and time-consuming to upgrade. Now they have the ability to automate it, we're working on getting to that point. The analytics that are available show great potential.
Stability has been great. My team, we call ourselves "the invisibles" because things run so well that sometimes you almost feel like you have to try to break something to actually get acknowledged.
In terms of scalability, it's been able to do everything we want and we're probably using one percent of the resources, day to day. We'll have up to 100 people logged into the system and it just runs. It still gets good response.
We've used technical support on occasion. Every once in a while you run into something that you're unsure about or not sure how to utilize it. I've been happy with the support we've received. It's definitely improved, like I said, over the years. It's been great. The response has been much quicker.
For the open system side, I don't believe we were using anything previously. Probably anything that they would have been using would have been Microsoft Task Scheduler or a Unix cron. But we were not using anything that I know of at the time. We did have CA-7 on the mainframe, which we still actually use on a limited basis, but that is being sunsetted. So we were not using anything really.
I wasn't involved in the initial setup. I actually used it from an operator's standpoint. I did not start maintaining the system until about a year and a half after we brought this system in.
It was implemented prior to my time of working with the application.
I am unsure as it was before I started administering the application.
When our company is investing in a new vendor, our top criteria are
I don't have a whole lot of experience with other automation systems, other than CA-7, which we're on a very old version of, but I really like the Automic Workload Automation due to its ease of use.
We use it for multiple system automation and file transfers to secure POS networks.
The speed in which data is collected form all POS terminals has changed the way our industry has started analyzing how to schedule showtimes, drive advertisements, and change concession pricing. IT is no longer a quarterly process but something that the business can change within 24 hours.
The ability the system has to dynamically create groups, schedules, and workflows is crucial to AMC. In a fast-paced, agile environment, the teams at AMC are very lean. Monitoring and maintaining of all the approximately 2,000,000 executions of Automic jobs are managed by only three employees. The system has been designed to be as dynamic and versatile as the business processes and teams that own them.
The direction in which the UI is going is concerning to me. It does not offer the security context we would need to implement future versions. While I see benefit in the Web UI, the security it would lack in separating a user's experience from an administrator's experience is an issue for us. MFA functionality is required since we're dealing with connectivity to the POS and for PCI/SOX compliance.
Another area for improvement would be SQL performance. While tracing SQL traffic, we noticed a lot of commands that cause contention/locks as well as forced waits. The efficiency of the SQL could be greatly improved (in some cases by simply replacing nested Selects and using NOLOCK hints).
Finally, re-evaluating the security model that the ECC uses would be very beneficial. While granularity is very powerful, some intelligence around it is the only way it is manageable. I should be able to grant a user access to execute a job without having to directly list every include, prompt set, output scan, script, login, etc. An inherited read for execution purposes would accomplish the same results without making the admin list every single object every time, as well as deny the user the ability to edit.
There have been some issues with performance when there is slowness with database resources. We have also discovered issues with some objects if file size/count is high. I believe a patch has been created for that though.
We do not have any scalability issues.
Technical support is amazing. They always follow through and are extremely personable. They help as much as they can, and have no problem asking others on their team for help to make sure the right answer is given.
We did not have a previous solution.
The initial setup was very straightforward. The consulting team for implementation was great to work with and taught us the system very well.
The team at Automic are great with understanding your needs as a business. They are always willing to go the extra mile to make sure the solution works for you. This is not only something they do in their software but also in their licensing.
We looked at BMC, Tidal Software, ORSYP, and ActiveBatch.
I would advise anyone purchasing this product to do the architecture work ahead of implementation. While it is easy to move objects between non-prod and prod or other environments, if you put the work up-front into designing how to move things or manage outages, etc., it makes your world a lot easier.
You gain a lot of time and effort because you can automatize many things. Repetitive tasks costs us, so we can reduce them to zero effort and minimal costs by using the product.
The most valuable parts are the scalability and flexibility, where you can do whatever you think, then you can realize it in the product and have many ways to do it. So, there is not one road you can take, but many roads.
There is one missing part in the product concerning recurring tasks. You can schedule a recurring task by a context action, and run it as recurrent, but it creates a time container which can be quit and disappears. So, it doesn't remain in the system. I would like there to be some time container objects which exist and remain in objects which you can also handle and add. For example, inside the schedule to be able to schedule recurring tasks.
This is a very stable product. When it comes to a new release, you sometimes have to be a bit more careful. For the rest, it is very stable. Over the years, it has also become more stable.
It is very scalable. You can use it for a small or big company, so it works in both cases, and also with little or big development teams.
The technical support is very available and competent. They have a lot of know-how, which they are willing to share. If you have big issues, they will quickly help you.
In the beginning, we used a banking solution which was running on one platform. It was AS/400 at the time. We were changing the banking platform so it moved to a new platform. The old scheduler did not exist for the new platform.
Additionally, the new banking solution needed an adapter, so we also needed a solution which could interact with this banking solution. We had more satellite systems, so we also had to handle the planning between different systems and the old scheduler, which was one platform based and it could not handle it. That was the initiative to choose a new scheduler.
Implementing the solution in 2009, the setup was easy (straightforward).
Other parts, meaning implementation of all the processes, this was very complex. We had to think about steps, like name conventions, standards to introduce, common objects the users should use, and the training that users should receive about how to use the product.
I would rate it as a nine out of 10, not the best one. It gets a minus one because of the new web interface, because it is not so easy to handle nor is it intuitive to use like the old one. As for the rest, you can do everything you want. It is scalable, flexible, and it does what you want it to do.
One key point for our selling is our business's dashboarding. It was something very important and we used it at the beginning very much.
It is an easy product to use, and we can use it for end-to-end process automation. We also have the capabilities to do dashboarding, therefore we have an analytics product that can provide other things and value for us.
We would like to see more dashboarding into the product, maybe an embedded Java API which we would be able to load on our own objects into the system. We were writing them on our own, but we would like this standardized.
The system is a stable product overall. We did something maybe a little bit wrong at the beginning, so we had a little bit of an unstable product. Since we have merged to version 12, it has become a stable system.
It is a very scalable product, not only for Workload Automation, but also for the other products provided by Automic or CA Automic. You can use the baseline, the automation engine, and scale up what you need.
Technical support is excellent from our past experiences with Automic. At the moment, we are facing a few issues with the merge of CA and Automic. We hope these will be resolved soon.
Our old solution was not able to deliver a real end-to-end automation. It was embedded in SAP. An excellent product for SAP so far, but it is not able to be scalable for the end-to-end.
This was the reason why we did research at our company to do an end-to-end product assessment. In the end, the decision was to made to go with Automic.
During our PoC, I was the guy who was implementing and installing the product. I thought with the help of a consultant that it was an easy installation.
On the shortlist, when we purchased the product, we had CA, Stonebranch, BMC Control-M, Automic, and our current vendor in mind. A few of them were kicked out during the first session because they were not able to deliver everything. In the end, we had BMC and Automic.
I would like to rate it as an eight out of 10, because there is room for improvement, and I would like to see this from Automic. They should continue to work on the product to improve the product.
If my peers are looking for a real end-to-end solution, not only some siloed solution, they should go for Automic because it is an easy product to use. It is easy to install. I can recommend this product to other customers.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: The partnership between a vendor and customer is very important. You should have a good account manager in place who is dealing with the customer. This is something very important for us. Customer service and support are also important.
One of the uses that we decided to use it for is site switching. We have two data centers, and we have critical applications in both data centers. We site switch them twice a year just to make sure the DR is in place. It takes just an hour to move one system from A to B. It is so fast, quick, and effective.
The two main things about it are its versatility and stability. For versatility, we bought it to do one job, and we now use it now for several jobs on all different types of applications. In regards to its stability, it is very reliable. We have never had any unplanned crashes.
The new user interface AWI could improve. It is quite easy to use and work around, but it has lost some of the functionality that we used to have in our Vim client user interface.
I have been working on it for about 12 years now. We have had three unplanned outages throughout the whole time, and all three were man-made errors (someone pulling the plug out).
With some of the newer features, we have been able to do new things with them. We are always in demand in our company, someone asking us, "Can you do this or can you do that?"
The technical support is very good. It can sometimes take a little long to get an initial response, but it is very good. They will persevere, and get to the bottom of whatever the issue is.
We bought this back in 2004. We were upgrading all of our systems to SAP systems, and we wanted a scheduler. We did not want to use the SAP scheduler, so we were recommended UC4 (as it was at the time). That is why we brought it in. It was for our SAP system, but we use it on all applications now.
The initial setup is relatively straightforward. There is an awful lot of planning because it is such a critical application for us. We have to test everything before we go ahead. It could take us up to three months doing all of the testing, maybe putting the infrastructure in place for an upgrade. The actual day when we upgrade only takes about an hour or so. It is very fast, and we have never had an issues.
Because of its stability and versatility, I give it a nine out of 10. I never give tens.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: Support is very important. Also, if we are looking for a solution, we might go to Automic, and say, "We want to do this. Can you help?" They are always very good. They will come over, sit down, and talk with us, helping us where they can.
We are using Automic in a wide range of operations in our production site and our disaster recovery site. In addition, we are using it in our production site as an ITSM integration tool.
I am using Automic Workload Automation for disaster recovery, and its monitoring capabilities and its scalability for our operations. It is very good.
The SSH agent is missing in version 12.1. Maybe it would be a good addition to see on the web client of the next version of Atomic.
We have been using Automic for two and a half years. It is very rare to have a problem. If we have databases working well, Automic has never let us down.
It is very scalable. We use it in every aspect of our IT operations, and the scalability is very good.
Turkey was our technical support during the project phase. They always help us to grow our jobs, automate new things, and when a new version comes they quickly adopt to the product.
We were not previously using another product. However, we did have our own automation solution (scripting). Before Automic, there was no automation product.
In the beginning, it is hard. We did not know how to deal with things. However, when the process is ongoing, it is very easy to set up and build infrastructure on Automic.
I will give it an eight out of 10, because no product is as good as a 10. There is room for improvement for Automic, but I am pleased to use it.
Right now, we are working with version 10 of the product, it is very good. We are very happy with it. However, we have to upgrade to a different version and there are a lot of things that are different, and we are not completely convinced how it will work.
Our normal functions, what we had in version 10, are lost or not there. So, we will have to see how it will work in the future. As a company and as a product, though, we are ready to upgrade.
It is a batch application. We have a daily batch that we have to start. This application controls the batching. So, this application is essential to our company.
We have a lot of places in Germany. For example, if there was someone in Munich who wants to send data to someone in Hamburg, it is very easy to do a production application safely and quickly, because we have everything in one system. We just do a file transfer.
It depends for me as an administrator. There are a lot of features which help us get a stable application. It is easy to have a stable production line, because this app supports us very well.
I hope in the next release that they will solve all the bugs which they have found in development.
I hope going forward they will make some changes to the documentation. I hope they will write into the documentation what has changed and what the new names are. For example, some features have a new name. I hope they will make a translation the names in the old version to the names in the newer version. This would be a very important thing.
Version 10 is very stable. We have no problems with the product.
Some problems could happen in the future because the current version does not seem to be stable. There are a lot of things which could bring danger into the stability of our work process, because things have been changed, and it is not possible to work the product in the same way. We have to accept the changes, and we are not sure if our employees will be able to accept the changes in such a short time frame and perform them the way they should.
There are so many possibilities to be used from this product, and every company is using it in their own very special way. Though, I don't think every company is using it 100 percent for all of its possibilities. There are a lot of areas that you can go with it.
When I came to the company, they were already using Automic. They had been using it for a long time.
The complexity of the initial setup depends on the person who is performing it. It was okay for me, but I have some colleagues who have had some problems with it.
We have increased efficiency with this application.
I prefer this product.
Primary use case is to automate our SAP job workflows and all the job workflows that we work with. Thus, to get better performance in our company by automating everything that we are working on. So far, it has been working well.
It is easy to learn, but hard to master. If you have been working for years with this product, it is easy to understand the whole product and work with the needs that we have. Therefore, it offers a lot of things that we require. So, it is really good.
Automic is perfect to work with for a lot of job loads. It is perfectly done to combine the needs that we need. Therefore, it is a good solution for our requirements.
We are able to combine job scripting on the server and automation engine on the GUI. Therefore, we are capable to work in SAP and on the servers, then file transfer the whole product line, which Automic offers.
Some of the usual features are now not there, for example: For calendar details, in versions before, you could see it because it was a different color or different letter. Now, it is all similar icons, and some features are marking more objects than just one, which is making it not possible to see anymore. There are some features which were basic and are now gone. I heard that they are coming back. So, I hope it will get better.
I would like the transport case to be in a new feature. This way, you can stage objects to be more flexible and with easy automation. Right now, it is not that easy to transport some things automatically. Thus, it would be nice if these were some of the features which will be offered as part of the critical path which is coming. It would be nice to set our own critical paths, so these workflows can be critical because there are some important workflows running. This is critical for us, but it would also be nice.
Right now, it is decent. The new version is sort of a downgrade because some features that we need are gone. The version before was more stable than the current one because we are having some problems with the performance. Therefore, I hope the next version(s) will be better again. However, right now, it is not as good as it used to be.
Scalability is good for us. We are growing, so this is perfect for us. It is easy to scale. So, it is good.
We work with a partner who offers technical support.
If the company is big, use Automic because you are able to automate things more easily.
If the company is smaller, use Control-M. The understanding of it is easier than Automic, because it offers more. So, if you are smaller and don't need such overload, use something else, like Control-M.
The version before was overloaded because if opened various windows, it was not easy to understand if you were new to the product. The newest version is easier to understand. However, right now, the performance is not as good as it used to be and some features are gone. There are still improvements needed. It is decent, and there are good ideas, but there are still improvements needed.
We use Automic Workload Automation (AWA) for different things in the company, e.g., batch-bookings, archiving, virus scans, flight plans, etc. It is used for everything in the travel business which has IT. We do a lot of batch things within the industry, as it is a wide field.
The company does not notice our team much, which is not so good. However, that is because we can are quick and solve problems before they happen. We monitor and see where problems might occur, so we are not noticed so much in the company, but it helps in avoiding problems.
The automation helps a company to do things without manual processes. This is the definition: Without having to do so many things manually.
One example that we have with a new customer is that they hosted their programs and everything themselves. The developers received calls almost every second night saying, “We have a problem,” without having on-call duty, but they did not have any on-call duty. Yet, they still received calls saying, “There's a problem.” They just had to rerun something, and it worked. Yet, every second night, they got called.
With the automated solution they are now happy, because we can easily say, “If it breaks down, it might be a networking problem. Just restart three times and after about five minutes, run it, and it will be okay." Nobody gets called and everything works. The solution is easy for them now. For us, it is a small thing. It helps a lot, not only in huge business problems, but with the smaller ones. We have a much better night sleep and can develop their stuff better.
You can create very fine, granular workflows with a lot of possibilities. It gives you the possibility to do things in many ways. We do not have so many cases where you just can copy information here and there. Our customers have special needs, and we can use the tool to do that.
I am heading up the AWI. I desperately miss the possibility to show my read-only users on the Explorer side only their folders, not all the folders. This is something I would like to have on the dashboards (for example), where I can show them from an assembly side just their folders, not all the folders. They should have only rights to their folders, so why are they able to see all the other folders? It is confusing for them and not very comfortable. I told this to the developers already.
It is quite stable. I have been with the company for a year and a half, and in that time, we have not had any major breakdowns. We do not have many issues with the stability at the moment.
We are now testing on the new release and the AWI. We are a little skeptical about what is coming up, but we will wait and see.
I am a little new to the administration. At the moment, we are planning the new release where it will be easier to scale it to our needs. Though, I can't say anything about the actual version that we use at the moment.
I have raised several incidents. I have been quite content with how they have gotten back to me, which is good. Even with the transformation now to CA, I like the way they work.
The initial setup was very complex. This company and the one that I worked at before found the very first migration from whole systems, like TWS, to the Automic product challenging. They were not used to all the features that it had. Though, I did not hear a lot of complaints about it.
I would encourage people to use the solution.
We use it for the following:
There are some problems when using the new interface, which is normal, as it is a new technology. In the future, it will be much better. Hopefully, Automic is working hard on the issue.
We would like to see critical path analyzers. I am not sure if it is coming. If it does, out-of-the-box would be nice. We would also like improved SLR monitoring. There are SLR objects, but I can't define an SLR object plus one, or end days. I can only do it for one day. As we are time shifting to another day, it is not possible. This should be improved.
The performance is nice. The stability is very good. We do not have any problems concerning the stability. We have never had any major problems. We have had minor problems, but it has not crashed hard. It runs our business safely.
We have one server, and it has enough hardware with no problems at all.
In the last two years, the reaction times were not so good. However, in the last four to six months, my experience has with them has been a lot faster. People are called back five minutes after I establish a ticket or incident. They are often doing WebEx and web sessions to get to the point, not making us write 50 pages, then not providing a solution.
It was 13 years ago, we previously used Control-M and switched to UC4. This was a management decision.
I did it 13 years ago at different companies. In the past, we did not use the wizard. We set up the components standalone, then combined them in configuration. It was easy and well documented.
Presently, there is a problem with the translation. It is some type of hybrid. We have some parts in German and some in English. It should be completely in German and completely in English. It should be better in the future.
We receive time efficiency from this product. For example, some users use to manually transfer many files from A to B, and we have automated this task. We used to have complex solutions just to gain information from files, read files, put in a customer filter, or share something. In the past, many people had to look into the files manually.
No competitor has this mass possibilities to design processors for automation solutions.
Test it for a long time. You have to look if it fits into the mindset of your company.
Main criteria when selecting a vendor:
We look to other companies about the following:
The primary use case for using Workload Automation is the automation of applications in different cases for business or data warehouses, controlling programs, and ERP systems (like SAP). We have also began to use it for data center automation for provisioning of virtual infrastructure.
One of the benefits is we have one view of our automated things. We do not have different automated silos. We have one view for our operators, which are doing things 24/7, and need just one interface, not multiple ones.
The main features are the enormous, stripped function, which the software provides. Also, its many different agents which are supported in different platforms.
After the merger, it is getting more American. Now, they do not have support in French and have limited German documentation. This is a critical problem for companies who have older generations who did not have English in school.
The big pain points are the AWI and the web interface. There needs to be a change with these features.
I am a long-time customer of the solution. The older versions were very stable. Then, there was a switch to versions eight and version nine. This was a few years ago.
I am happy that Automic understands the needs of their customers and changed their development process, because now, the application is very stable.
It is very scalable. We have in one environment one and a half to two million executions a day. We are one of their bigger customers.
There used to be custom support from Germany, which was one of the biggest features. There was a change. It was German speaking support. That was one of the things, which I am sorry to say is getting worse. They have different support centers now, and the support is worse, not better.
I understand why there was a change. There were different mergers with other companies. There were more products, like the release automation or service orchestration. There are many platforms which are supported. It is very hard for the support to support the whole thing.
When we build a new environment, I am involved. Workload Automation environment setup is smooth, but it could be smoother.
One thing which is not so smooth is CA Release Automation. When doing a PoC of CA Release Automation, and it is not so smooth to install because of the different communications between these components.
Every time there is a task which must be repeated, the solution can reduce costs. When you do it one time manually, or when you do it perhaps two times manually, it is okay. If you have to do it more than this, because of the automation, you can reduce costs.
Possibly IBM, because we are a big IBM customer.
You should have a look at Automic, but also at their competition. There are a few things which they need to change. I would not have said this a few years ago, but now they need to improve.
The primary use case is scheduling business automation. Its performance is good.
It works to automate business processes over all the systems. You have a central point where you can automate everything.
It had a big impact on time, cost, and resources because it was the first product that we used which was supported all our platforms. The biggest impact is its central point of control. We now have one point where we can see everything: The whole workflow of a business process, if it is hanging or if it is still running.
The most valuable features are that a lot systems are supported. You can use this for z/OS, Windows, Unix, SAP, etc.
The problem is when you have a major update, afterwards you have small problems. This is with every software where you have to find some solutions for your problems after updates. However, after the problems are fixed, the stability is really good.
We have some problems with updates where some functions are changed, so you have to check your whole system to see if everything is still running. The update process for us is around two months of testing and one day of updates.
The stability is good.
Scalability is great.
We have needed the technical support, especially after updates. We also needed technical support for problems. Though most of our problems in the last few years were not based on Workload Automation, but the database that we are working in.
It takes a time until you get the right person, but when you get the right person, they are really helpful.
We were previously using CA-7.
There are a lot of new features, but we do not use them because they are too expensive. The price point could be less.
You can't go wrong with Automic, because it is supporting every common system.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
We do many basic things with it for the SAP system on Windows. We also use it with many with other communication systems. For example, we sell it as an iPhone 5.
As a system, you can examine many pictures from the company. I must catalog these pictures with the names and architects, therefore we have many file transfers. For example, we take information from the SAP system and send it to Azure from the automation engine.
Our company uses it to connect different systems. That is a big feature of the system and platform.
We are a small company. The system runs fine. We have no performance problems.
There are too many functions and features in the system. The basic must run first. Refine the basics instead of adding more features.
Now, we have version 12 running. We do not like having the newer functions, because it affects the stability. The stability must be better, and the system must work with better functionality, as we have many bugs in this version. This is not good. CA must have higher quality.
The company can expand with this product. Every time I bring in new ideas for solutions, it is with this product.
Our systems must always run. I have ideas to stabilize the system a little bit, so I contacted technical support. They have for other ideas on how to fix issues. For example, if the agent goes down, we have no chance with a standard restart to fix it, and the agent is the service manager. No one in technical support understands this question, which is not good.
The initial setup is easy and straightforward. I did it over 20 years ago.
We used CDs to install it over 20 years ago.
My boss says, "It is a little expensive." For example, I must pay a lot money if I need to have a DB agent. This is too expensive for us as a small company, so I use SQL *Plus. This costs us nothing.
We cannot use all the functions because they are too expensive.
I must have a tool which works. I have a new version, but I have problems. That is not good.
However, if we have no problems with the quality, we will probably use the product a long time. I like this product. I know what it can do.
The primary use case is workload automation in our SAP area. The performance is fine.
We have seen improvements in time efficiency and cost resources, because we are mainly focused on the SAP area, and its automation in that part. We also have some other complex areas where we help the applications with their processes. Unfortunately, we do not use it in the automation of those parts in the infrastructure, like other companies have talked to here. Therefore, our company is still meant to be for SAP Scheduler, and not given the necessary management attention.
It helps in the usual business, though it does not help us get in front of our competitors.
The stability is fine. There are always a few little parts or points with issues, but overall, it is very stable.
It is quite stable in terms of size and requirements. The stable environment does not matter that much. However, the product, with it types of agents, and the sizeable automation engine, seems to be highly scalable.
We have been satisfied with the technical consultants. We ordered them for special situations.
Technical support is different. Sometimes it is fast and very helpful, sometimes it seems to be bureaucratic and slow. It depends on the questions. Over the last few years, we have noticed it worsening. Ten years ago, there was more personal contact. We had the feeling that the support was much more involved in the system and better informed in the topics. Because of the very high speed of growth, there are only a few dozen of people with ten years of experience, which is another problem of size.
Initial reason was the projects which from SAP R2 to R3. That was the reason why they looked for a different scheduling system.
Meanwhile, we are controlling nearly all SAP systems that we have, so it has a three digit number. In this area, no one has any idea of using a different tool for it. The another direction where we hope that we can move into other directions, but without the necessary management, it can't.
The people involved in the initial setup were convinced that they had the right product and absolutely satisfied with the setup in 2001.
I know that it was evaluated against other tools in 2000, but I do not know which ones.
Have a look at following:
Most important criteria when selecting vendors: Our company wants to have strong partners. Therefore, they change the direction from selecting specific small companies for a specific question or task to have more global partners for big areas, where they can rely on the necessary knowledge in the company in terms of enough people with this knowledge, not only one specialist, and no one else can take over in the case of any problem, holiday, or leaving the company.
The production controls the test environment and test batches. The performance is very good.
Our key feature is that we have different clients for different environments. We can manage all our environments using a transport case as a name of a feature. It is very helpful to have the same setup in each environment.
The new user interface needs improvement. The previous version was good and stable. Now, we have to check the new one before using a web browser. It is not stable.
We have been waiting 11 years for release management, which will be in the next release.
Stability is okay.
The scalability is good because you can add on as many services and processes as you want.
We used the technical support in the beginning, who were easy to work with.
In the last couple of years, there was no need for it.
We had a couple of solutions in place starting from Windows, Unix crontab, and other batch controlling software (like Control-M, Redwood, etc.).
Batches interact with all applications, so the batch structure is more complex and using different tools was not a solution. Therefore, we needed to have one single workflow as a solution for us, and we made the decision to have one tool in place. Then, we did an evaluation, and the winner was CA.
The initial setup was straightforward. With outsourcing, it made it simple.
We have received a lot of time and cost efficiencies from using the product.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: The tool is more important than the vendor.
We use Workload Automation to control all our processes and the batch control.
We are working with version 10, and need to upgrade to version 12.2.
At the moment, we have clear batches to see workflows to control.
In the next version, I do not know what is coming up for us.
The workflows should be clearer and more expressive. I need this going forward.
We have downtime during every upgrade. In the normal process, it works fine.
It is scalable.
We are now in extended support. We are now in the change process, so we needed extended support.
When we contact support, we can get through to the right person to receive the correct answers.
The product has helped save, time, money, and resources. It has given us a competitive advantage in our industry.
Use the product. Support is good and it works fine.
Our customers use it for scheduling.
It performs quite well. It depends on the customer. Some customers do not use it with all the features that the product offers. They only use a small set of what the product can do.
Reliability: You can count on it.
It has saved my customers time, money, resources, and efficiency.
Monitoring is very good.
For power users, it does not work well for them at the moment.
The event monitoring is very good. It has become a great part of the product suite. However, most customers rarely use it.
At the moment, it is working quite well. Version nine's stability was not good. Now, it is stable again.
The scalability is very good.
Mostly, we get a standard answer. Sometimes, the support is not very good.
Maybe it is problem with some customers and the tickets that they are opening, as the tickets are not very well designed. Still, as an experienced user, when I open a ticket, I put in all the needed information. Yet, the support for me is still not great and could be better.
It is straightforward for me. Those new to this business find the initial setup complex.
It is a complex product, so you can't do the setup with a click.
It is a good product for solution automation.
We use it to automate our business.
While we have had some issues, it is mostly perfect. If it is set up, it is running.
It does its job.
Token-based authentication: Where we do not have to use a password, and can use tokens for authentication in other systems.
Apart from the new UI, it is very stable. The new UI feels unready. It makes your browsers crash.
The scalability is very good. We can scale it however we want. We have seen new add-ons, such as the event machine. There is always something to augment.
You have to improve your systems, but there are no seen limits.
Sometimes, it is a bit hard get through the first level of support to the second level, then to the endpoint of the solution. Overall, it is a bit tricky.
Our migration from a previous system was not easy. However, when we did a new implementation that was easy.
I do not remember.
I recommend to try the product. Our competitors mostly use this product too.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: Getting things done better.
We use it for batch processing. It is performing well.
We are doing the end of day processing, as we are a bank. It is very important for us that we do not have one hour of downtime, because we are online the whole day, 24/7.
It helps our efficiency because it is a batch processing tool which works without a menu.
We are an old-fashioned company. We are only using the product for batch processing.
I would like a good AWI in the next release. The AWI is not fully functional at this time.
The stability is not as good as it could be, because we are on version 10, but it is okay.
Every time we have an upgrade for a new version, we have stability problems, because the versions are not as good as they should be. Then, after a few months, they get more stability, and we are happy with it.
The scalability is great.
Sometimes technical support is very good, and sometimes it is very bad. They do not see the problems which we have. We have to escalate it to our product manager. When we need a fix, they say, "The fix is in the next version. Please wait while we make updates."
Use Automic or CA Workload Automation, as it is the best tool.
The primary use case is automation of our business processes within the bank along with several areas of process automation. We have been using the product for 10 years now and have built it up from scratch. We do a lot of stuff with it, of which, we are mostly satisfied, though there will always be problems with it.
It enables us to build automation which is flexible in a controlled environment. We have a lot of governance and compliance requirements as a bank that we can fulfill with this product. We can fulfill them because we have an environment where everything is monitored where you have an audit trail of the product and for the executions of the development.
We can perform across platform automation with a product, and we are not bound to one architecture or system. We can bind together a lot of systems and ways of integrating systems. That is the most positive effect on our end. It is very flexible to program around your automation.
The stability needs improvement.
The stability is not as good as it was in former years. Stability has gone down from version to version, but it is probably due to the product's complexity and transitions in the company. Stability could be better, as it was better in the past.
The scalability is okay, as we are not scaling so much.
Technical support is good. They are doing the best that they can, but it is a complex product with difficult requirements from a stability point of view.
The initial setup was 10 years ago, so it was easy at the time. With each upgrade, it will probably have more complexity, but it has been a little hidden because it is a step-by-step process. Though, the complexity is okay with the setup.
It is not so easy to give numbers. There are just a lot of things that you cannot do without this product.
We evaluated some competitors a decade ago, and Automic (UC4) was the best choice. We look at the product and features. We did tests and an installation of the product, then we decided on Automic.
The other competitors, 10 years ago, were CA and IBM.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
Work Automation is a worldwide product which has a lot of utilities. It can be very helpful for use with customers' data, and it is very quick with utilizations, customizations, etc, so we can meet the customers' needs.
Customers save a lot of money when they use this product, because of things like the scheduling tool. I know several companies which are not using it. Overall, it seems more expensive, because Workload Automation can save a lot of time and human resources.
It does give our customers a competitive advantage in their space.
From Workload Automation, which is missing for me personally, is a workload portion. I can see dependencies of the job directly in the graphical view, therefore I would not have to use the search button to search for every object every time that I needed to see if it was a predecessor.
For the user interface of version 12.1, I cannot find a lot of utilities and objects from previous versions, making me change my habits. This is not good.
I am working with Workload Automation for more than ten years, when it was named UC4, then renamed again, etc. We have never had big problems with stability of this product.
The performance is very good. If there are problems, they will be caused by somebody doing something wrong. Usually the product does not have a lot of problems, and we did recognize when the application has failed due to errors.
You can do a lot of customization and build your architecture and hierarchy as you want it.
Since you are able to save resources and costs, you can grow your business.
We do not contact support very often. Most answers are in the documentation.
When we install the version 12.0 and 12.1, AVI caused some problems, but after opened a ticket to technical support, they responded quickly with a great answer.
I would recommend to definitely try the product.
In our company, we use it for the following:
We were using UC4, which was very good. We have had some challenges within the application as it moves forward to the new features.
For example, our users are used to the flatline of the UC4. When we introduced the AVI, they are not interested nor motivated to use it.
There are some challenges because of the new features and the new change of interfaces. Nevertheless, we use this application to organize our jobs and to integrate the applications within the company. It is useful for report generation and backups.
It is good and efficient in terms of workload.
We have a lot of file transfers with Quest. Hopefully, their product management can add this feature since we do the file transfers now with SharePoint.
We want to establish a service where we can be a file transfer expert for everything. We want an automation engine that we can use within our company. We would like to use this particular software to provide file transfer service.
It is more stable now. In the previous versions 8 and 10, it is more stable, but with the AVI version 12, it is more complicated and we encounter a lot of problems. We need to install hot pieces and badges every time, so it means downtime for us. This is starting from version 12, which is why we are not happy with it.
It provides a large scale for us, because it is flexible, in terms of usage. We have done a proof of concept within this application.
I think we are known to the technical support. Unfortunately, the technical support does not help much with our problems until you get to the gurus due to the complexity of our problems.
Automation is very powerful. This solution is flexible in terms of platform integration. They need better CA support , because in terms of issues and problem solving, the support is not good. It would be much better if CA had some dedicated support to customers.
We use it for scheduling of our production and development.
It helps us manage production and provides an overview of production along with a review of past performance.
The most important thing is having no downtime. We do not have any downtime for support or release changes.
It is easy to manage and customize the system. It performs well.
Today, we use a rich client for this product. In the future, or for the next release, they will be using a web interface. This web interface is not as scalable as the rich client for us. The web client is not 100 percent programmed as we need it.
It is 100% stable. We have no downtime. We have 24/7 production throughout the year.
It has a good source code that we administrate. We can expand the system.
It has endless scalably. We can add new Clients from zero to 9,999, and we only use 10 Clients. We can add agents up to 500,000. We can also add RAM, disk space, and CPUs.
In the early years, when using the product, we had many phone calls with technical support. Sometimes those calls were good, sometimes they were bad. It has been getting better.
In the past, we had CA-7. CA built this mainframe schedule. Then, we have canceled the contract to CA, and decided to go with UC4. Now, UC4 is a part of CA, and now we have a contract with CA again.
Sometimes it was simple, and other times, it was very difficult. However, we had good technical support from Automic designing our system.
We had an employee from Atomic design the system for us.
I would recommend Automic with some restrictions.
We use it to automate our business processes. It is just for automation and scheduling.
We have worked about 20 years with this product. We have migrated for 20 years from CA to Automic. It is very interesting. Now, we are back to CA, because they have taken over the Automic company. The benefits also include the automation of our processes. We have worked mostly with SAP software, and we have other things in our plans. We want to automate the distribution of servers, so clients can make a request from ServiceNow. That way, companies can order servers on the internet that we normally we would build during the process for internal use. Because developers sometimes need a very fast machine for testing, you can click in ServiceNow to request a machine after two hours, then you can have a machine to plug into. At the moment, we have tried to make this a digitalized process, although we have a problem with ServiceNow.
It is easy to integrate different systems in one platform, then to automate it. You have a job, then one part of the job is going to the SAP system, and the other one is going to ServiceNow or to another system. Then, they all combine into one process.
The very special feature that we use is the connection to ServiceNow.
It does not have the same functions as the old version, which makes our developers angry because because they must work with this tool. We going forward it may not be possible.
CA has missed the product's focus. We have a lot of developers in our company, and we are experiencing the same problem. However, the CA company has not seen that developers and clients are having a problem, which is not good for the product that we do. CA took over the Automic company last year, and we do not think this was a good direction for the product.
I would like to see the rich client with the product for the developers.
It is more important for us to have a longer, stabler releases. We do not need so many features. This is a problem of bigger companies where the management wants new features, but the product has no stability after that.
It would be good to have a mobile app, where you can monitor your process, just to see if it is running or if it is blocked. The user interface on the web is not good for the developers. Features are missing, and for the client, it is too complex. At the moment, we build our own UI. We have programmers in Java API, and we have a Client which works on the mobile phone. It can start jobs, make the schedules stop and start, and see the statistics on a smartphone.
We have had issues with the performance. We have a job now in production, but the product is not very stable. ServiceNow creates problems with the Automic entry of the connector, so the stability could be a little bit better with this product.
Sometimes, we have some performance problems. I am not sure it is because of the software. It might be because we have a huge amount of objects in our system. In this case, it can happen that we often have performance problems. I am not sure if it is because of the product, it is more because of the objects in our system.
Because the product is based on the SQL Database, we have too many activations. The scalability is limited by the SQL in the background, and that is a problem. If you want to take jobs to other systems, you must build the developer our way. At the moment, we are building a new system. We have it for every country and have separated it for machines. It is mostly getting better, but the scalability to build it on new systems or to split it is not so easy.
We have technical support. We also have a connection in Austria with the support colleagues there.
The first step: You must describe the problem. At the most, filling in a checklist.
Then: It helps to take the telephone, and talk to a technical engineer directly.
That is why their technical support is very good.
Mostly, we contact support because our problems are very complex. Normally, we find problems that they have never knew about before. We have new technology and build actions on the automation system, then we find objects which can work with those actions, because we have technical limitations.
We have a contact within the support, and also with a freelance in Austria. We have worked together with several people to find a solution for this new philosophy. Automic states you should build everything with actions and take multiple actions with business processes. However, not all objects are usable for actions that we see.
If you would have to start all your jobs manually, it would cost you a lot of time and money.
You do not need any humans to start jobs, so you can save a lot of money.
From the bad products, the Automic is the best. All products in the market are not good since they are simple workload scheduling. There are some things are missing in the Automic product, which our management does not see.
I would recommend using Automic.
Our primary use case is release automation.
We did a PoC last month, and are planning on probably implementing the product.
We have seen a cost improvement from it.
It is a way to test the system from production, which is nice.
It is very difficult to migrate. We want to buy one package. The release automation should be in one package.
It is a stable product.
It is a scalable product. It is a very strong instrument for job scaling.
The technical support has been good with quick responses. Their last response was for the product license. It was delivered within two days.
We were not previously using another solution.
I was not involved in the initial setup.
We did not evaluate anyone else.
It is a nice product. We have been looking for this type of product for many years.
The primary use case is for automation in the area of SAP, as a specific solution in time management and access control systems. We are providing for this for any of our customers who use the automation engine. It is performing well.
The product has benefited our organization. It saves time and manpower.
The user interface has room for improvement.
I would like to see the event engine in the next release.
It is a stable product.
It has a normal scale for working with the tool.
We use support when we make release changes. Technical support has been good to work with. They have been easier to reach now than in the past.
We did not have a previous solution, just something we built in-house. We have been using this solution for 20 years.
The initial setup was easy. We have used it for 20 years, so we set it up in a special way. We were installation number 30 for this product. We have been working with it for a long time.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: multi-platform usability.
Our objective is to sell this product in the name of CA, as we are a CA partner. We are trying to develop this new solution and provide it to our customers.
It will increase all delivery due to an impact on efficiency, in terms of time and faster resources.
Time is improved because somebody does not need to tell you that they are finished for you to start. In terms of personnel, you can use less manpower resources, and this is good for the business from a cost perspective.
The most valuable feature is that it can be installed on any type of application on every kind of operating system and the agent can use it on these applications and systems.
I would like more training on workload automation, because I do not have a complete insight of the product yet.
The user interface could be a little more user-friendly, as it is not the best out there.
It is very stable. I have set up a personal environment on some virtual machines, and it was very smooth and fast. Thus, the performance is very good.
It has zero downtime, which is very good. This is impressive for anyone who wants to use this solution.
I have not tested scalability. From what I read, it has a very high scalability without downtime.
The techncial support is very good, because I had a problem with an agent not being updated, and it was not starting. Therefore, I was having some problems, and the technical support immediately understood the problem, and helped me to resolve it.
The initial setup was quite simple because they have a manual which tells you in a simple way of how to install it step-by-step. Therefore, I didn't have any problems. You do need to have a background in operating systems, then it is not so difficult to install.
I did the initial setup myself.
CA was the only vendor on our shortlist.
We are a partner of CA technology. They let us know that they wanted us to invest in this product, particularly in Italy, because they work in Italy. That is why I started to learn this product.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
We have many systems, like SAP, Linux, and Windows systems. We use it for crossover and production, beginning from Host to SAP to Windows, to make a print page for all our users and customers. It is not possible do our jobs without automation software. Automic is a great help to us.
We have been using automation since 2003 (version 263.G). Today, we are at version 10 and looking to upgrade. However, we do not what version will to upgrade to due to our hardware requirements. We must check if what we have is okay, or if we must buy some more servers, laptops, and screens. Therefore, we are checking out versions 11 and 12, or we deciding if we should wait for 12.2. We are seeing what other are doing and determining what the problems for a migration might be.
The main things that we use it for are job control and batch. For these, it does very well.
We not use all features nor all the add-ons.
Version 10 is stable. New software never comes out without some problems. That is the problem when you go with new. Therefore, we are waiting a little bit, since it is very important that the software is stable. In the near future, we must have a stable software that we can do our job yesterday, today, and tomorrow. This is the most important thing; you must trust the software.
When you look at other technical support hotlines, the Automic team is very good.
The hotline can take a long time. They will say, "I will take it and give it to the Level 2 support." That is okay. We do the same thing in our company, like a front office cleaning calls. I still do not like it. It means more team more time waiting for a good technical answer and solution. That is a problem. Unfortunately, we can't request having 20 technical support teams dedicated our business.
We have using Automic for long time. From the first step, you need to have time to install it. When you want to use the entirety of Automic, it is heavy. In the beginning, our administration chief told us to use 10 percent of your time for Automic administration. Now, we are using 100 percent (our entire job); it is a full-time job.
Our systems are not that big. When we have trouble or have updates, it is a full-time job. We must talk with other teams. We must see that the hotfixes are updated. This cannot be done in ten minutes as some modules and add-ons come together, and we must see how to orchestrate it within our company. We must look at these things, which are part of the company, see how they can be used. We spend a lot of time of this.
Our customers use it to control executions of jobs on different platforms, systems, applications, and technologies. There is a huge variety.
These are the most important features.
The versioning and support for the lifecycle of Automic's developed solution is what we were missing. However, this is coming in version 12.2, so I am looking forward to seeing how it works.
If you implemented with Service Pack 4 or 5, then its fine. The first version tends to be rather unstable.
The product has huge potential. I never sold its huge potential for scalability.
If the issue is a repeatable issue known to the support team, then you can expect a prompt answer. The problem with the support is if the issue is new, then it is challenging for them.
The application is straightforward to setup. What is sometimes challenging is making the application fit into the customers' environment. They may have some restrictions and restraints that we need to consider and also need to understand how to prepare. Therefore, it is rather an organizational challenge rather than a technical one.
Our customers' environments are not manageable without Automic. Their environments are so big and complex without automating them, they would not be able to run their businesses at all.
Our customers also evaluated Tivoli and BMC.
Definitely go for Automic.
Most important criteria when our customers are selecting a vendor: One of the outside most important features versus competitors, we are able to orchestrate control.
We build jobs and transfer data from A to B, then start SQL jobs and customize them for our customers, etc. We automate the system for our business.
The FTP agent: We use it excessively, and the connection is easy to handle between our company and the outside.
Up until now, we have to solve many problems from the business unit to handle the connections from SFTP. We had to shut down the FTP protocol, and we had to connect the business with external partners.
I am hoping version 12.2 has everything that we need.
We have had some problems with the SQL handling that should be fixed. The calendar also has some problems in it. There are some other little problems, but they should be fixed in 12.2.
I would like to see more stability in the product and have the transition between versions be more seamless. Every time we have the same mistakes from one version to the next version. It is terrible. You have to test it every time for the same mistakes when a new version comes out.
12.1 is very stable. We started with 10.6, which was okay. 12.0 was terrible, then we switched to 12.1, and now it is okay.
Scalability is okay. We have tried to integrate it everywhere. My boss tried to get it on everything, so we have to stop him sometimes. However, normally, it can handle everything that we have.
Support has been very good. Unfortunately, every time we message support, they tell us to scale. This is terrible. While the support is good, I do not want to scale every time. It is terrible and makes everything complicated. I want support to answer me, then I am happy. I write them an email, and every time I receive the response, "Scale it," and I hate it.
The product is okay.
We are using it for batch automation and protection. We can control and check it, which is the main thing. When the batches must be run, we need a perfect system for it to run. It must run 24 hours, seven days a week, with no interruptions.
Its benefit is time. When you have the automation going, it just runs. We have no problems with any of the automation.
We have costs for an Oracle database, and it is a high cost. However, we think we can do this on a Windows database, which is cheaper. We will do this the next few years, so it will be better.
We have long-time planning and forecasts. In the forecasts, we can change our workloads in the future to save us any problems. Whether it is three days or three weeks, we will regularly change our processes if that is our problem. Therefore, we can do a long time planning, if necessary.
The features of the calendar are the most valuable, then the scripting. With the scripting, we can script all things, which is a first. As far as our schedules, if we have problems, we can create our own process in the automation, which is good.
The forecast and long-term planning could be made a little better when you work with it in the future.
At the moment, the stability is good. We are experiencing a technical problem with the system, in regards to the VPN, which we hope will be fixed in the next few years.
We can expand it. We have products and software in the firm, and we do the risk management. Risk management from Atomic could be in the next year, and this will be a difficult change for us and the product which we run at the moment.
We have used technical support in the last three months. They are good. If we have problems, we can get an answer in three hours. Support is very fast.
The initial setup was complicated and difficult.
It has helped us reduce costs.
Compared to our other products, it is a good price.
We evaluate vendors every year to see if it is possible to change. We look everywhere.
We have had Atomic since 2005. It was the only software with scheduling on the mainframe for clients.
Look at it and test it, because it is a very good product.
Currently, we build self-service for our customers. This means they come to us and ask for special solutions, then we build a generic self-service which can be used for this customer. This solution is like the action pack from the Atomic marketplace.
Currently, we can implement business flows versus workflows where the customer does not have the manpower to implement it. We use it with automation, getting more speed to solve business processes. It is also possible to eliminate median breaks.
Most valuable is the script language that we use. There is also the opportunity to use the database information inside of the automation engine and current existing objects that you can stack against it.
I use this automation solution, because it is very flexible. This automation solution supports a lot of computer platforms. Also, a lot of operating systems are supported other than automation solutions.
The one big advantage is the Bose-Bose implementation methods. One is with the graphical use interface, where you can use small items, and it is possible to implement via programming language, but mostly this is not the case.
Mostly from my point of view, I need to isolate what is the use case of the customer, and what needs to be done. This is not technical.
I need better stability.
I have worked a long time with this product. Formally, it was previously known as UC4. In the past, it was more stable than now.
As we have seen, the latest version that we checked out at our customers was Version 12. This version needs to be more stable.
The first version and service pack, we could not use at our customers because it had special bugs and issues, and we decide to wait.
From my point of view, the current product needs more stability.
The scalability works fine. My impression is on the implementation at the customer. If the hardware and the base implementation were implemented carefully, it scales fine because you need to take care of the database on a lower level. On the network infrastructure, if you start a lot of server nodes, then it works fine.
If I work with a customer (as a consultant), they do not want a straightforward setup. Therefore, I have not seen an out-of-the-box setup, because I have not seen a normal implementation.
We spare costs because we can realize possibilities which are not implemented in case of missing manpower. It is also possible to eliminate manpower costs in other cases, like service level support, which may no longer be necessary because of this machine. We do not need a call center because we can use machines. We can raise cases, then we do not need to pinpoint exact causes nor assign the exact responsible business unit because the machine can decide itself.
Our customers also evaluated Redwood Software. However, they do not have the same flexibility as CA.
I would recommend Automic.
Most important criteria for our customers when selecting a vendor:
The primary use case is to automate jobs which run at night on SAP, Unix jobs, and Windows. It has performed well.
It has improved the way my organization functions, in terms of efficiency, time, and costs.
The night processing helps to have data just-in-time for the morning. It is also very important to have the possibility to create incidents or emails if there is a problem, so operations can investigate and do something.
At the moment, we are only using the workload automation and the job scheduling. I think there are more possibilities to automate and connect them to the whole business process.
The most valuable feature is it always runs things automatically that you normally have to do manually, like download files. We also use the FTP agent, where you have to download and upload files at a specific date.
The only thing that we would like improved is the FTP agent. It only supports SOCKS proxy, and we would like it to also support an HTTP proxy.
We would like the feature to implement the privileged access management. However, we have heard that it is already supported.
It is very stable.
Technical support is very good.
We had a previous solution. It was Control-M. We switched because there were some issues around the costs. Automic's costs were lower.
We had some consultants when we started with it. They gave us an introduction and training. We also have training every year at CA Automic in Nürnberg.
We did not evaluate anyone else for job scheduling.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
We use the CA Automic solution for our complete business batch. We have several use cases, depending on the subcompany. We have an ABS system with a great batch and the lean system, therefore we have three different main batches with approximately 900,000 objects in the CA system.
We have mostly connected our complete systems on the web front-end for the customer, so they can choose their products, manage their contracts, and get a new contract. This is all put into the automation system and handled there until, at the end, we have the output for printing, then we send it back to the customer.
We are on the user side of CA, not system engineers. We control the different batches, and this way is better for handling the systems than the way that we did it before. I like the script engine of CA, where you can build everything you want. If there are features not implemented, then you can script something around it, and it works.
The system is very stable. I have very impressed with it. Also, it all depends on if it is Linux and Oracle or Windows and SQL. We have both in our company, and both are very stable.
We have a large batch with many objects in the CA system. Therefore, we are always at the upper end of the performance that the product can handle.
The search is sometimes very slow. I have heard in the B12 version that there is a new solution for this issue, but I don't know if it is usable because they duplicate the database and then you can search there, not the online database. We just moved to the B12 version, so we will see how it work. The rest of the performance is okay.
From what I hear, it's good support. They always try to support us in the best way.
Last year, when moving from B8 to B10, they have changed several features. One of our highly used features was no longer available. While it had a similar name, it was a completely different function. After calling the support and checking with them, they implemented the old feature for us again on the newer version.
About 15 years ago, we had CA-7 from CA. Then, we changed to the UC4 Automic. Now, we are back to CA.
Before we have our main releases, we always check between other products for the batch. In the last few years, it has always been Automic which was best for our needs.
I have seen all different types of scheduling systems. It is the best for my company to handle.
It has an easy to handle GUI. Because of the script engine, you can do nearly everything you want. I prefer it to other solutions.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: It has to handle our batches, because we use many objects. It is good how we can migrate from the new tool and how much work is accepted for the migration. At the moment, we have not found anything better than the CA solution.
We use it for simple job scheduling, mainly for SAP. Two to three parts are for SAP, job scheduling, and smaller and larger workflows. It performs well.
Our customers appreciate it mostly because it takes a lot of effort away from them. You can trust the system. If the system works well, the customers are satisfied.
Most of our issues are related to the system, not the job scheduling, such as, bugs and unexpected downtime of the application or database.
Content of file transfers cannot be searched by the system, but has to be done by the user interface. This is not good, as it has been erased often.
One of the previous bug fix issues created new bugs, which was not good.
The main part of it is stable, though.
It is scalable. We can grow it out.
We use the technical support often.
Our recent experience with technical support has not been good, because it took a couple of months to get feedback. Traces and reports were sent, but were not analyzed for at least two months before providing feedback, and they did not give the right traces. This took two months to find out, so that was not too good.
Our primary use case is the SAP area, but we do provide Workload Automation services for other applications as well.
The solution is integrated across all applications and platforms in our company. We can provide everything from the very first data source to the data target in one immense code. With the automation, we are able to provide background services. It is very economical and not possible to do manually.
It is part of our IT service. Without this solution, we are not competitive.
The most valuable feature is the combination of normal job management with file transfer and scripting, so we have everything onboard.
I would like to see the following in future releases:
It runs stably. However, after a version upgrade, the stability should be better.
There are too many bugs to be solved after a version upgrade. We are working on the limits of an architecture with 16,000 platforms. It is impossible to test everything out in the software lab of CA. I wish it would be improved.
The scalability in the SAP area is very good. We are able to provide hundreds of different services and system incidences.
I see a huge possibility in cloud solutions. We are looking to offer future services out of the cloud.
We have had good experiences using their technical support.
I have offered other companies to come view the solution at our company and see how it works. Most companies have been happy to do.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
We have different applications. We can schedule our pickup or applications (mainly MFT for financial services) and provide file transfers only to customers.
Automation helps us. It makes our lives easier. Anything that can be automated is automated.
Stability. It works without issues.
The web interface needs improvement.
Compared to other products, the stability is remarkable.
We do not use some of the special features. We use a very plain level of it: just starts and stops, calendar functions, schedules, and events. We have no add-ons on top of them.
We have had no problems with the scalability so far.
It is a bit of a problem, because they like to do email ping-pong via their web page. Sometimes, it would be much easier if someone would call you on the phone. For example, it takes three or four days to obtain the same answer that you can receive with a phone call within a few minutes.
I was not involved with the initial setup.
I would recommend Automic, because it is easy to set up and use. The whole system is complete. I have not had any issues with usage.
It is completely sufficient. We are still on version 10. We are upgrading to version 12, because we have to do it. However, we do not believe there is any missing functionality at the moment.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
I do not care about the name of the vendor.
We primarily use it for job scheduling and business automation.
It is the automation. Saving time and money is the key. We automate everything.
We are able to use notifications for escalation, so if there is a problem, we can find out about it quickly.
The workflow allows us to integrate multiple applications into one flow and come up with a business result.
The one big issue that we have is around passwords and not being able to update passwords through a different tool. This is not available yet. It is packed in there with 12.2 and the login objects, but not with the connection object, which is a big thing for us to allow us same password updates without having to manually update them.
We have had no big production issues in the five years that we have had this product. So, it is really stable.
It is scalable. Though, it costs to scale. While, it is scalable, the add-ons are expensive.
Technical support has been good. Though sometimes it varies from time to time, where it transitions from good to bad. We have not had to use them so much recently, because we almost know enough about the product at this stage to support it ourselves. For the critical issues they are very good, but for the the lower priority stuff over the phone it is a bit difficult to engage them sometimes.
We were replacing AutoSys. We saw Automic as a better version of it, which it definitely has been. We replaced that an existing solution because it was no longer fit for its purpose.
It was straightforward. We made it difficult on ourselves at the time. We have recently changed and made it simpler. As regards to a mixed environment, it was fine.
We have seen big improvements in automation and automated tasks allowing our people to work on more important things for the company, as well as getting financial data quicker. It also provides us time savings from a company point of view.
There were a couple other vendors.
I would definitely recommend the product.
We are using mainly Workload Automation for all types of jobs over different servers and operating systems.
Without automation, it would be nearly impossible to do all the jobs that we are doing.
It is flexible. We can do additional scripting in Automic script, in combination with JSL language.
Documentation is not great. It was previously much better.
I would like to see features from "Prompt" sets in read Masks.
At the moment, we are using 2.0. The job automation is okay. The main functions are stable. There are bugs though.
It is scalable.
We used just shell scripts and crontab.
The initial setup was straightforward.
In some of our departments, it has had a great impact on efficiency, costs, and resources.
I would recommend Workload Automation.
We have many use cases for automating different systems. In most cases, we use it to automate database application servers. We have over 2000 servers, so we need to synchronize jobs on various platforms, which is our most common use case.
So far, the performance has been okay.
Our environment is more stable. We have less downtime and some of our operations are much faster than they were before. We have seen a positive impact on efficiency. Tasks that used to take people one or two hours are now done in minutes.
In terms of whether using Automic has enabled our company to grow, it is possible. However, I have not been made aware of any examples.
The most valuable feature is that I do not have to wait for one job to finish, then manually click on the next one to start. Automation is the best feature.
My biggest complaint is that there is no list price. We work with Oracle, Microsoft, IBM, etc., and all of them have list pricing. Automic, right up until today, has never had list pricing. This makes things difficult, because we need to plan budgets for the next year and can't. The lack of list pricing is my number one complaint because it is very difficult to plan anything.
We have some systems where, every time we lose the network connection, the software, after five or 10 minutes, is inoperable. With Automic, we monitor what is happening, and if network connectivity is down, Automic deletes all the logs that caused the system to crash. Before Automic, we needed to handle these situations manually. Now, every time that logs crowd the system, Automic deletes them and solves the problem.
That means we do not have this type of downtime anymore. It is system crucial for us.
Scalability is fine. We have a cluster and two active-active nodes, so it is very easy to scale.
We used technical support in the beginning. The experience was very good. They were easy to reach and know their business. They helped us a lot during that time.
This is our first job management solution. My managers made the decision to buy it.
The important criteria when selecting a vendor to work with are
Good support is very important for us.
The initial setup was straightforward. The installation took two days. We did not have any difficulties. You just click, click, and click.
As an engineer, I do not have access to this information regarding ROI.
The cost of arrays is high. If you want to buy an array for an application, and see value from it, you need about half a million dollars. That is too expensive.
Read the documentation.
We use it for batch automation and site switching. It has performed great for us, and we have had very few problems. We have done a full upgrade in the last 12 months where we went from an AIX to a Linux platform, and this was a massive change for us.
We are a big organization. We have 7000 employees. We are spread across Ireland and the UK, with operations elsewhere. Therefore, it is about where can we use Automic to create efficiencies. We know there are a lot of things that we are doing which are time and resource intensive. We would like to leverage Automic for these tasks.
We have been using Automic for more than 10 years.
We have about 40 million jobs and workflows go through our organization's Automic instance every year, from our Treasury functions to our SAP functions. We use it in approximately 30 to 40 applications. It is very important to us.
It works. It does not fail. If something fails, it is not Automic. It is a script or something else.
We are an electricity company, and we issue hundreds of thousands of bills to customers every month. Automic is key in getting the billing files ready, so they can be sent out to the customers. We are heavily regulated by an Irish regulator. Therefore, if there is any delay with bills going out and the process around it, we can be heavily fined. Thus, it is crucial that we have software that makes everything run smoothly.
One of the areas that we are looking at is using Automic in the cloud. Diversity is actually more important to us than the scalability at this point. For example, where can we leverage Automic to automate and improve efficiencies in our organization?
The technical support is excellent. We have gold support for Automic, and are happy with it. That is really key. If we invest with a company and its product, then we make it a critical condition that it can't fail, essentially. If it does fail, then we need to know that if we pick up the phone, someone is going to fix it for us.
The only time that we needed technical support in the last few years was when we were doing an Automic platform migration. We were on an AIX system and migrating it to a new operating system. For the migration, we relied on Automatic to assist with the transition. Apart from this, we generally do not have issues with Automic.
Mostly, it is the jobs or scripts that we request Automic to run where we see issues, which is fine. These are fixed elsewhere.
This was before my time. I suppose we had an operations function that was shift-based. We would have a team that worked around the clock, and they would be performing the batch functions manually. Then, when Automic came in, we could operate 24/7 because Automic was doing the automation, but we only needed a team 9 to 5, Monday to Friday, in the office. This cut down on the need for a rolling shift. However, this is probably going back about 10 years ago.
I was not involved in the initial setup.
One of the key reasons for implementing Automic was to cut down on manual tasks: Workflows, jobs, the way it can work across multiple platforms and different operating systems, stop and start services, transfer jobs, and file transfers. This has all greatly increased our efficiencies and productivity, and reduced the amount of human interaction required. The key to this is the stability.
We feel that we get a good deal with the price.
We recently renewed our Automic contract last year. At renewal time, it is not about looking for an alternative product, because we can't find one. Also, Automatic is heavily integrated in our organization. The cost to change would be a huge factor for us, and we have not found any other product that is better out there.
We have not found another product that can do what Automic can do.
We are looking for use cases to utilize it within our organization. Basically, what we are looking to do now is to automate as much as we can within the organization.
We are probably not using it as much as we can, but that is on us. Any issues we have ever had with the product have been resolved. We are only using Automic more, rather than less, in the organization. It is as integrated in our company as it possibly can be. It is crucial to us. We would not put that this type of time and investment into a product if we were not sure of its capabilities and stability.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
The product has to fit. The vendor has to be willing to work with us and tailor their product to suit our needs, then offer that level of support to us. The company that we work in, we can't have downtime or outages. Automic and similar products are critical to our business and our internal business functions. Thus, support is key, if there is an issue, so we can get it fixed quickly.
Do your own proof of concept. Make sure you know what you want. Be clear about what you want the product to do for you. Go out and meet with the vendor, then test it.
We use it to schedule our production workload.
We scheduled our database maintenance jobs through ASP and when we did this, we scheduled them in a certain defined way that we expected them to run. And when that was initially set up, there was no consideration for a database not being available so if the jobs tried to run when a database wasn't available, obviously they wouldn't work and an operator would have to intervene.
The plan was that people would open requests to have jobs held at that time. When there were only one or two databases, that wasn't hard to maintain and people did it. When we grew to many, it became harder to do that. Then with the change in how we're doing stuff, everything happens more, servers get booted more, more changes.
We use features of the product that allow us to determine if the database is available and to only allow the jobs to run when the database is available. So that saves a lot of manpower in the one group that was opening requests to hold jobs, and in the other group which had to implement the request to hold the jobs. It eliminated all that and provided a more dynamic environment for when these jobs can run, without operator intervention.
That is something we started about two years ago. We fully implemented it last year and we've noticed a big savings in manpower.
It's easy to use. When you schedule jobs, if you can speak English you can schedule them easily and correctly.
There's a lot of flexibility because the product allows you to do many tasks, in multiple ways, so you can choose the way that works best for your environment.
How they handle cross datacenter failover, because they have a really good High Availability solution that works well within a single sysplex, but in our environment, since we have two main datacenter locations, we have two separate sysplex. And, while when everything is working ASP can control jobs both here and in the other location, the current product does not support High Availability across datacenters. That is something we would like to see the product have.
Currently, what we have is we have a homegrown solution, because we're required to have that kind of resiliency, because it's our enterprise job scheduler.
When everything's working, we're invisible. When it's not working: "Why aren't you working?"
Stability is a 10 out of 10.
Scalability is a 10 out of 10.
Tech support is a 10 out of 10.
When I started, we were already on this product, but I do know that they were using a competing product before and they felt that this product had more of what they wanted. So they converted from the competing product to this product.
When the company chose this product, it was actually pre-CA, and then CA acquired the product. But for the most part, they've kept it what it was. While it has a new owner, it's still the same product.
I believe it's pretty straightforward. It's a complex thing by nature so it's not going to be super simple, but it's not like you can't do it either.
I believe experience helps. And in our case, we had a lot of help from the vendor, so while we, per se, didn't have the experience, there were people helping to get us going that did have the experience. So maybe I'm underestimating how much that was important, because it was available, even though it wasn't coming from me or one of my team members, but somebody else was providing it.
I'm really the technical guy. Pricing is not something that I deal with so I can't answer that question.
That would have been 20 years ago, so the market is a little different than it was back then. There are solutions today that did not exist back then. Pretty much all of the big players still exist today. But we're definitely in a different place today than we were back then.
No advice other than the normal stuff that you would do when looking at any product: Does it fit what you need?
I would recommend doing a proof of concept before signing any contract. Everybody's stuff sounds good on paper and everybody's stuff can do everything, but what happens when you bring it in your environment? Does it do what you need it to do? Those are the most important things. The other stuff, while it's nice stuff, if you can't do what the product is required to do, then there's no value to the product.
For us, it gives us what we need so it's a good value. Forget about the price, because if the product doesn't do what you want, it doesn't matter what the price is.
I would rate the product a 10 out of 10. We use the product everyday and it works and, for the most part, every time we have a problem, it seems it's never my product's problem. It's: I have a problem because there's a problem on the system, so guess what? We're not going to be working. I need a stable system to run.
Or if it is our problem, maybe we didn't do something we were supposed when we found out that we were supposed to do this, and we reconfigure something and then we move forward and we don't have that problem any more. Or we re-architect how we do stuff, because we've had to make tweaks of stuff as we've gone along. We would do stuff and it would work and then we would do something a little differently, and what we did, it didn't work and we'd have to figure out what the problem is and fix it.
Again, the flexibility of the product allows us to do things multiple ways. We might have started doing it one way and that worked for a while and then either something changed -whether we had more volume or we did something a little differently or we had different issues - and then we would address them with different tweaks, solutions.
The abstraction - I call it the "who, what, and where" of pieces of work that need to be done in the IT world. The who: the log-in, the credentials, all those things. The where: as far as the agents and those things. Then the what: the actual worker objects themselves. Having those abstracted and separated allows us to move things from one environment to the next, and it allows consistency and testing. We can abstract those three different layers. To me, that's one of the biggest advantages of the tool.
How technology agnostic it is. It works with all the different legacy solutions we have and it allows us to look at things in one location, as opposed to going to a lot of different places.
More native support for - we talk about the software factory with services and that new architecture - more native support for interacting with those things.
Very stable. The tool we had before this tool, we were nervous around patching cycles, and we were nervous for datacenter downtime because we didn't how that tool was going to react. But this tool, far better than the tool we had before and we probably don't even really have to think about the stability. It's sort of like a good piece of software is like a good referee. If it's doing good, you don't notice it. That's the good thing about Automic. We don't even notice that it's there a lot of the time. It's a very, very stable product.
Very scalable. I know they just talked about adding support for hundreds of thousands of agents, and I know it goes up to like a thousand clients per engine, so you can do a lot with that. It's a very scalable solution. We have a lot more capacity probably than we have use cases for it right now.
Technical support has been good. With any type of support structure, you're going to have challenges with geographies and things getting passed off, but generally Automic has been very supportive. Their Professional Services department: excellent, A1. And they really give you that "partner" feel, as opposed to the customer-vendor. We still have that relationship, but when there are actual issues, it feels more like a partner situation as opposed to a "You're the vendor, I'm the customer."
I give it an eight out of 10. The functionality is great, the scripting language is very powerful. They can adapt to most use cases. Very good community of different companies and a user base so when we have problems we can go to other people.
Why it didn't get a 10, there are too many windows. If you're getting deep into some of these workflows, you may have 20 different windows open and, if you didn't already have that deep understanding of how enterprise orchestration works, it would be very overwhelming to get up to speed on something like that.
It needs some type of way - and I don't even know what that looks like, but I know when it doesn't feel good - to minimize the amount of windows and get it to where you could have all the information you need available on the screen; or more dynamic so you don't have this clutter on your screen.
We have all of our payroll being done in the platform. There are a lot of different processes that need to be taken care of, and they all need to be linked together. When you put them into a workflow, and you know that you've built logic into that workflow, and you have alerting, it's something you can step back from. You don't have to be worried about every single piece of that puzzle. If something goes wrong, you have confidence that some alerting will let you know. It streamlines, it makes things go faster, less eyes on glass.
This product has really helped Comcast and the organization streamline a lot of independent jobs that we might have had. We can take something from crontab, something that's very nitty-gritty and low-level, and be able to put it into a nice interface, and be able to track it at every junction along the way, add alerting, all kinds of stuff, interdependencies. The list goes on and on.
I'll start by saying, one of the big features that they did implement, that a lot of people, us included, were asking for for a long time, is the ability to do zero downtime upgrades. They have introduced that. We haven't gotten to that version yet. That's the dream.
Honestly, this is a hard question for me to to answer because we're so far back. I just want to get to the point where we can see and use the features that they have added, that we just haven't even been able to touch yet.
All products have downtime. In our specific example, the product has become so critical for our organization that taking the necessary plan-maintenance, to do patching and upgrading, that has become a challenge for us. We're several versions behind now.
Outages that we incur are at least partially our fault at this point, because our reliance on the platform has become so much that it's a struggle to even upgrade. That aside, we see some downtime from time to time. But I think some of it is self-incurred. We would do ourselves a favor in working on this, to get the platform upgraded to get to the more stable, bugs-are-fixed, and things of that nature.
I just saw a session here (at the CA World conference). We're nowhere near this, but the vendor - CA, Automic - they just increased scalability way more. Like I said, we'll probably never get to this, the point that they've increased it to.
It's very scalable. We have two nodes that are highly available. You can add new nodes if you need that. You can take a node, a total node, down and still be operating fine. It has a lot of scaling to it.
Initially, is it hard to set up? I don't really think so. I've been working with it for a while now. Once you understand how something works, it becomes pretty easy.
I'll say this, support team there have been really great, very enthusiastic. Will answer your questions, and that helps a lot. A lot of it is, you don't know what you don't know. Once you do, you've got it figured out.
In terms of upgrading, it's very database-driven. You have to upgrade the database, and then just replace binaries, new software.
When selecting a vendor, support is really important, cost is always a factor. The licensing model can play into it. My team works with several tools, other CA tools and some other company tools. The licensing model can really be a burden, and just takes a lot of time and cycles away from other work that you want to be doing. Things like that. But yes, I think support's a big one. Definitely being able to work with them, knowing that they're there, knowing that they have the aptitude.
I'd rate it an eight out of 10 probably, being honest. I don't have a lot of experience with other tools.
I think it's great. I think it does what we need it to do. Again, reliability. I think we hurt ourselves a little bit. But they take the product very seriously. They're improving it all the time. I get a lot of excitement. It's hard not to be excited being in this environment (at the CA World conference) and seeing the people that work on it, and seeing the TED Talks, etc. I'm excited to get to the next level. I'm tired of not being able to get there.
Workload automation. We are using it for job scheduling and automation of our internal business processes to eliminate a lot of manual workaround.
It is performing very well. We are getting ready to upgrade to version 12. We have been running 10 for the last four and a half years, and we have had a really good experience with the product.
It has made everybody more efficient and productive. So, it eliminates a lot of the manual workaround processes, which enables our business to get more out of its people, which is always good.
The ability to be able to automate more of our business processes:
Keep enhancing the analytics piece. We are just getting involved with that, so we have not had the reporting functionality previously in version 10. We have seen and heard a lot of good things about it. In talking with other customers as well, they would like to see a few enhancements done where you can pull in outside data sources to get a cumulative view from one centralized place.
I think this is something that they are currently working on. This is exciting news for us, because we are definitely looking forward to it.
Stability has been very good. We have not had any major issues or very much downtime at all. If we have had downtime, it has been planned. So, stability has never been an issue for us.
Scalability scales up and down. We are a fairly small shop right now. I would say we are scaling. We are slowly growing, but we are not anywhere on the scale of what the product can handle, especially talking with other customers that are much bigger than we are.
We have had no issues with the scalability so far.
On a scale of one to 10, I would say, probably a seven.
We have had some issues recently going through the process of trying to upgrade from version 10 to 12. Working with support, we have gone back and forth a lot, and a lot of that has had to do with resources not being available either on their side or on our side.
From that perspective, it could probably improve a little bit, but overall, we are very satisfied.
I was not involved in the initial setup, but I have been involved in the current upgrade process.
The current upgrade process is straightforward. They have made the process much simpler. After we get to version 12 and any subsequent versions going forward, it should not require any downtime at all. It should not require any system reboots for the upgrade of other components outside of the engine itself, such as the agents.
No. We just decided to stay with what we had because we have had really good luck with it and we are very satisfied with the product.
We are very satisfied with the solution as a whole. There is a lot of new functionality that we are excited about. We have not had any real major problems systematically with the solution. Overall, with the product, we are very satisfied. There are a few areas that we feel like, from CA's perspective, could be improved, one of those being support. The other being new additional features and functionality that we as customers are looking forward to.
Consider what you are trying to accomplish with a product like this. Definitely list out all the pros and cons of solutions. Make sure the solutions you are looking at fulfill your business requirements. There are a lot of solutions in the marketplace that have a lot of bells and whistles that may or may not be of benefit to certain companies. Make sure when you are looking at solutions and potential partners that the solutions that you are looking at fit your business needs.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:
Primary use case is for scheduling of our LCM, our Loyal Customer Mailers. Mailers go out with coupon packets for different households. Automic is used for scheduling all of the jobs that build those mailers, and send them off to the printer.
Performance-wise, we do run into problems sometimes, because we've only had it for about a year and a half. We're still working out some kinks as far as performance goes. But overall the performance of the tool itself has been pretty good. At first, it was a little bit slow, but we've worked out a lot of those performance issues over time, it's working a lot better now.
For me the biggest one is flexibility. It allows you to do so many things on so many different platforms. We have an Oracle shop that runs off of Oracle packages that are executed from Linux boxes. With that, whatever platform it touches, it can allow you to do so many different things. We can take the power of Linux, the power of Oracle and, inside Automic, we can just build our own little packages, and our own little toys, to go out there and do things.
For instance, one that I'm working on right now is to build test data to run extracts against production data. To build smaller tables, subset tables, for the development teams on the test side. It's a little bit like building my own version of TDM. But Automic allows me to do that, and to be able to schedule it, to go out on its own and do copies of these tables, on a regularly planned schedule. It makes it very powerful.
Number one, A+, is the scripting language, and the ability to go in, and take an already robust, consistent, strong tool, and turn it into an incredibly scalable, flexible tool, that you can literally do anything you want to with.
Back in the old days, I would think, "Okay, if I need a specific job done, I would think, what type of Shell script, or maybe a Python program, would I have to right to get this done?" Now I can do everything inside of Automic itself, using Shell scripts, or using the Automic scripting language itself; makes it very powerful.
A problem we've had is where file transfers are being kicked-off from one server to another, without us doing it. It's something internal to Automic that's doing it. And it is costing a little bit of performance, and it's a time issue, on the zero client. But otherwise, it's not affecting the other product issues.
I would also like to see a little bit more connectivity, more, "Play nice with other toys." For instance, we have IServ as our primary tool for our service request tickets. In order for it to play nice with Automic, we had to actually create a file and put it somewhere, where Automic can see it. I would like to see more connectivity with other tools, or more compatibility with other tools.
A little less button clicking, in the navigation of the tool itself would also help. There is a lot out there, and I understand that's what keeps the tool robust. It keeps our options open, but it's a bit click-y sometimes. To get where you need to go, you have to go through 10 levels.
The stability of the tool is fantastic. In the year and a half, it's really only gone down a couple of times. The tool itself is very stable.
What's nice is that it splits it up into clients. We have our own client where we do our own work. We don't have to cross into the path of other people; they can do their own work on their own client. From an organizational standpoint, that makes it very easy to use. The stability of the piece itself, has been proven pretty well.
The scalability is out of this world. We're a shop that has about 40 clients. When I say "clients", we have our own group, our own area to work in - production - and a couple of test environments. That's three clients. We've got about forty or fifty clients in our company. Different groups have their production, test, and development areas. But we can scale that out to 300 or 500 clients if we need to, without changing anything. It's a logical division, not a physical one.
The scalability of the tool itself, is really fantastic. It lets you work in your own silo, and you can have as many silos as you want.
We changed out from Chronicle to Automic in 90 days, without a single outage to our business. That has never been done with Automic. The Automic people were even saying, "How the heck did y'all do that?"
But we had some people from Automic, this was before CA bought them out. Some guys from Automic came over to our site, stayed in Cincinnati for a couple weeks, to help us with this initial setup, because it was such a time crunch. We had 90 days to get it in, and we had to pull the switch on Chronicle, or else it was going to cost us $1.5 million. It was a big time crunch, and they helped us get it in, get it working. We did not have any outage, we did not miss any Loyal Customer campaigns. Nobody missed the coupons because of our switch to Automic.
In terms of selecting tools, the important criteria are
That's the one, two, three I think everybody would answer.
Do the demo, and don't be scared of the Automic scripting language, because it's easy, if your team is technical at all. It's good to learn, it's easy to learn, and it just makes the tool explode with possibilities.
Typically we use the product to automate the delivery of the files that we pick up from clients and use for processing. Once processing is over, we use it to deliver results downstream to the client's delivery center.
So far, it has been outstanding. We haven't had any issues with it. It has saved us both money as well improved our overall quality.
Cost savings, productivity, the overall quality. When we do have an issue, it's typically not the software that we're using.
It's hard for me to say how it improves the way the company works, because I've only been here for about six months. I know that we've come to rely on it as a standard feature, as to how our processes are designed.
Doing more with less. It's allowing us to increase our overall volumes of data that we're working with, without actually increasing the overall amount of team that we need to monitor it. Since we can rely on its availability and quality, it has not been an issue.
It seems still very technical to get the full features out, which is fine when you're an IT-based company. But once you get to some of the leadership levels, such as myself, you don't have time to go digging into it. It would be nice to have some additional performance features such as reporting, analytics, that kind of stuff.
I've not had any issues with the stability, at all. None that I'm aware of.
I don't know about scalability yet.
I do know that because of what seems to be a simple solution, we are looking at Automic and, CA in general, for ways that we can leverage the technology in our other areas.
I have not used technical support personally, but my team has used it. We've always found them very helpful.
The most important criteria when selecting a vendor are, overall:
There are a lot of good ideas out there, not a lot of proven ideas, this one seems to have proved itself.
If I were to give advice to a colleague who is looking at similar solutions, I would have them have a general idea of where they see the company now, and where they're hoping that the company can be in the next two to five to seven years. Then, look not just at this one product, but the suite of offerings that they have, in making the selection. It seems to me that if we work with Automic and it works very well, the same reasons why we enjoy that product would also apply broader to the company CA.
We use it for scheduling our batch systems and interfacing with our developers and our test systems.
It has performed very well. We've had the product for a number of years, since 2013, but before that we had another product called AppWorks for a dozen years or so. And then AppWorks was acquired by Automic. We keep moving up.
The new release is web-based, so that's a big, big improvement. A lot of our products that we use right now are going to that platform.
It's easy to train other people. A new developer could come in and learn it very quickly.
Better escalation process for alert notifications. When there's an error or a problem, the automation part of it could be easily programmed to escalate it up to the developers or whoever is going to work on it. We had to home-grow that within the product because third-party products are so expensive. Having that would be a wonderful improvement.
It's super. It's solid. Never goes down. For me as a user of it, it's solid.
We have a lot of legacy systems and we're implementing new systems and applications to take over the old things. We're an insurance company so we have claims, and policies, and AP, and financials, and payroll. Old systems get old, and as we're implementing new systems, AppWorks or Automic now, just fits. It's just the best there is, so, it was a no-brainer.
We had such success with AppWorks. And then we went to this big RFI to figure out what we were going to change to because we didn't want to upgrade AppWorks anymore. But the success that we had with AppWorks - and then when Automic bought it - it was like a no-brainer. We would just go with them.
It was good. We had customer support who came onsite to install it and to train everybody and I was right there. It's mainly a product for our department, and then, as an administrator, we assign everybody, all the users and train them.
The whole thing is just a great product. We're really happy with it.
In terms of selecting a vendor, I'm not the one who does that but they go through a pretty extensive process of looking at the cost, the reputation. I would think it would be a combination of things including reviews. Management takes care of that stuff.
Do your homework. Do your research. The product we have is the best. I don't know what you can afford or how big your company is, and what your needs are. It might not fit into every company, so do your research.
Monitoring Oracle jobs.
Performance is great.
It's huge because I was a user in a subdivision that got bought or came into the single instance of Emerson. We brought, at the time, UC4 with us. We saw it was a value even for Emerson as a whole to have it.
Being able to script, create something I want the software to do for a specific job. This allows me to do that. Very powerful.
It's a scheduling tool on steroids. We can have a job run at certain times. If it fails, reset it a number of times and then send an e-mail. Send e-mails on any type of event. Calendar creation, schedule things on certain days, year-end stuff, period end. It's endless, really.
I don't know if they have it now, but a mobile version would be good so instead of logging in on my laptop to see something, I could just go in through an app and see if a certain job is running or not. That would be pretty slick.
Stability is good. We just upgraded, so there are a few things we're working on, but otherwise it's pretty stable.
The scalability is good. We've got more than Oracle jobs, we've got Windows and SQL Servers so we can do quite a bit.
They're responsive, because we've had the tech people on the phone during upgrades. They've also been teaching us, because we're learning the new version, so I guess I could say I've worked with them. They are very knowledgeable.
The older version wasn't performing as well because we pretty much maxed out what it could handle with our thousands of jobs we run a day. So, the Automation solution was brought to us and we said, "Well, this thing could supposedly handle it," so we've gone to it, and so far so good.
I'd say complex from the side that I don't know, where they have to set up, from our operations group, the servers and all that. That's beyond me.
The most important criteria when selecting a vendor, I would say, are
Go for it. I love it because I can move around in it and I'm very comfortable with the software. So I'm not scared of it, you could say.
Primary use case is to automate our batch processing for our DNA applications, which is our core banking application.
It has helped us automate our processes. It has taken the human factor out of it, so it has improved accuracy, speed, and coordination of our batch processes. It has allowed us to have a hands-off approach to our batch processing and automate complex processes amongst different systems.
It is very scalable and robust, and it keeps growing with us.
We are working on the 12.1 release right now. It has a lot of things that we have been asking for. I do not have a wish list right now.
The stability of the platform has been excellent. They are very quick to reply to any issues that we have, and release any hotfixes to fix any issues we have had. We have not had any stability issues with the platform.
When I joined my company, we were using an application from AppWorks. I was part of the decision process to do the beta with One Automation when UC4 bought them, and then became Automic. I was also part of the decision to stay with the platform and to continue to renew each year.
I was involved in the initial setup. The software itself was pretty straightforward. We converted from the Application Manager Platform to the One Automation Platform, and it was a little complex to get our jobs migrated over. Once they were migrated over, it was pretty straightforward. The software itself was pretty straightforward to install and get going.
Really take a look at Automic. They are a great company to work with and they have the best automation package out there. We did look at a lot of different packages when we were out there. I was not part of the initial decision process, but I did see the use cases that they did, the companies that they looked at, because they made the decision shortly after I came.
They looked at BMC and Tivoli. It was quite a while ago, but they were able to come and do a proof of concept very quickly with our use cases and really show value quickly.
The solution has performed excellent for us. However, the interface with the DNA platform and the partnership with Pfizer has not been as smooth as we would like it to be, but that is not the software's problem. The software itself has been very good.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: partnership. We do not like to have vendor relationships where we just hear from the vendor every so often. We like to have that partnership where they listen to what we need and work with us to fix our solutions. Every company has their own issues they need to solve, and we want somebody that is going to work with us to help us with our growth and what we are facing in the industry.
Our primary use case is automating and integrating different workloads and systems to populate data warehouses and different applications.
It allows us to free up developers' time from not having to set up environments, but actually using different environments. It allows us to have accountability and traceability of changes. It also allows us to be in the mainstream with what a lot of other companies are using, so it is easy to get a transfer of skills and be able to collaborate with other people in the field, because we are using a more popular tool.
There has to be a better way to visualize things in the application without having so many windows open. That is just an on its face type thing. If you get in deep into some of these processes, you may have 20 windows open, and there has to be an easier way to manage that. The actual components that they have are great. Just the presentation of it; sometimes I feel like there is too much on the screen and I want to simplify it. I want to get to the information that I need to without wasting my time trying to expand this window or trying to click this and do all that. So that is my one downside the tool. They need to figure out how to reduce the number of windows that you can have open. It is more of an aesthetic thing, but it helps your functionality out because you get to the crux of problems a little quicker when you do not have to surf through 20 different windows.
At my company, if there is a limit, we are going to find it. Everything has a finite limit. No matter what people tell you about any type of software, it is always a finite limit. However, compared to other competitors' software packages, this has been a lot more stable, but no software is completely stable. If there's a limit, we're gonna find it. Our company pushes the envelope when it comes to the data we process, display, and publish to our users, so sometimes we find those limits. Overall, especially since we have dealt with the competitor for a number of years before we switched over to Automic CA, it has been pretty stable.
It seems very scalable.
It is one of things, where there are a 100 ways to do something, and that is a good thing and a bad thing. You can do it the bad way and it will not be scalable, or you can do it the better way and it will be scalable. So, on its face, it is very scalable, but it definitely depends on how you implement it.
They have been pretty good. We have had the professional services company uses some of the budget to bring some of those guys in to work on specific problems and they are very interactive and very responsive.
I have not really had any issues. However, if there is a limit, we are going to find it. It does not matter what, and whose name is on the technology.
I was heavily involved in the initial setup. It was December 2015 that we had to migrate our entire workload automation suite of 1000s of jobs. We are publishing petabytes worth of data into this big relational data warehouse, publishings, all these different applications. We probably received 2000 files per week, and probably had 5000 jobs per week. Therefore, we had to migrate all that from one solution to another solution in 60 days. It was a contract thing that was going on, so we had to do it and I was heavily involved. We had some professional services people come down and we found out about it in mid-December and we were done by the first week of February. So, it was a heroic effort, but we did it.
I got brought in when they signed the contract.
There are some things that could be more intuitive in the tool. There is a lot of functionality, but the presentation of it could probably be better. It is a very powerful tool which allows for portability of code through different environments.
Get out there and research what the community is doing and different use cases. Take a look at the community and look at the feedback that the community is giving. It is a very user driven community. It is not driven from CA. It is driven from the users themselves, so I definitely go take a look at the user feedback, then think about the management and the implementation of this tool, which are very important.
Back to the first thing, "There are 100 ways to do everything." Therefore, you have to come to a consensus on, "This is the way we are going to do it", and have some standards upfront, because it is going to be a harder once you get into it using the tool. With any workload automation tool, it is the backbone of your organization. Once you start using, it is hard to change. Think about the implementation and best practices upfront and listen to the feedback from the user community.
To automate our processes, they run on batches.
Performance has been very good, actually.
Having automated, real-time notifications. If something is not available it's automatic where or whom to notify. And it's continuous processing.
There are a lot of ways it helps us, especially on the operations side, that it doesn't require manual intervention, that's one of them.
Ease of migration to a newer version.
Regarding stability, so far it's working fine with us.
So far scalability is good.
It's rare that we use technical support. Usually we take care of it, and if support is required they're able to get back to us right away. We're satisified with the support.
It works for the company, so far. Most of our team is familiar with it, so I think we are going to have it for a long time, which is a good thing.
It's not the only application that we have, we also have the other version. I came from a different company that ACI bought, and ACI had the other version of the Automic Workload Automation. So now we have two, they have the operations manager, we have the application manager.
In terms of looking at vendors, what's important is the reputation of the company.
I gave it a 10 out of 10 because, so far, I haven't had an issue with this product. And it works for the company.
If you need some automation, especially in batch processing, it's easy to handle and also the support that they provide is excellent, so I don't think you are going to have a problem with it.
We have been using CA products, for maybe 20 years, for managing workloads.
It will improve how we function. It is just meeting a functional need in a maybe more agile way; it is faster. People put labels on it: Agile or DevOps. Really what they are doing with the new product is improving your transformation and making it quick.
The frustration that we have probably had in the past is where CA tools run for a period of time, then they get deprecated, and you have to build a new one. What we like about Automic, they are new to the CA family, and there seems to be an ease of the migration. So, there is lot more automation going from the old product to the new product.
During the PoC, it was easy to use.
At the moment, it is as scalable as we need it to be.
We spun it up during a weekend.
It ticked all the boxes. We were looking at WLMD, Automic, or CCM to have more future proof capability than what we would like. You have got the functionality and everything like that. What we would like seemed to be a strategic product, whereas maybe in the past it was a lot of by-products, use it and throw it away. So that appealed to us.
We actually got to physically use the product before saying, "Yes."
We also looked at BMC PATROL, and I think two things impressed me versus BMC:
Try the solution. Give it a go. It has worked for us.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: Focused on SaaS products.
Our primary use of this product is to automate our ERP system.
The benefit of this particular solution is that we are familiar with the product already. Therefore when implementing this system, it will have a lot of the same characteristics as the old one. So it is the ease of transition made easier rather than going to a new automation system.
The stability is very good. We have not had any crashes or downtime with it in our testing. We are very happy with it and it runs pretty fast.
We are a small organization. We do not run that many jobs, so we do not plan on scaling it up much.
I have used technical support and the community, as well. I have found to get answers quickly to solutions that worked - asking both the technical support and the community.
We actually have an older product AppWorks 6.0 that we currently use, and we are transitioning from AppWorks to Automation several months from now. We are currently in the developmental stage.
The current solution we have is not supported, which is why we are switching.
I was initial in the initial setup. It was complex. We had a person come in from CA and assist us with the setup. It went smoothly. It took us about a week to get it up and running. However, it has been up and running, and we have not had any real issues with it since.
We still actually have not implemented this version as it is in its test phase.
It would be good to have some dashboards that come with the package rather than it be a cost to add them on.
We looked at this solution and we also look at another company. The reason we went with this solution is because we had been working with them for a long time and we trusted their products. For us, our learning curve would not be as steep.
They have gone from UC4 to Automic to CA in a very short amount of time, so they changed their face a lot. With those changes, they are actually doing a lot more technical advances. I think that they are a product that is continually growing, which is good.
Look at this product. Give it a shot, but also understand what your needs are. Look at several products before coming to a decision on what you want to do to resolve your ERP issues.
Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: A partner who is truly interesting in helping us meet our goals and who can provide a solution in a fast, reliable timeframe.
Just that the basic functionality works.
It saves State assets, for starters. Saving State assets is part of my job, and it's important. So that's how it's improving State work. We have a tool that secures and controls State assets.
Certainly, the Visual Studio plugin has a lot of room for improvement.
We need to improve communication. It's a mistake to send all the work over to India, that's my personal opinion. I think there's a real problem with communication in India. I've been on the phone with these folks and wasted my time, where we don't even understand what they're saying. I think the development of this tool should be brought back to the United States. I think it's a mistake to have it done it in India, where a real communication problem exists.
The scalability is not as much of a problem.
Escalation comes from the technical team in the United States to Level 2 in India.
We switched over 20 years ago.
Setup was complex due to the complexity of the tool.
If we had a choice to choose again, we'd choose something different.
We've been plugged into the product for 20 years now, so it's a little difficult to do that, although I have teams or agencies now, that are breaking away and they're going and using other tools now. I got one agency using TFS. I've got another agency using GitHub, so I'm seeing the breaking down of this whole process. A lot of it has to do with the stability of the Visual Studio plugin, which has not been very good.
Don't use the Visual Studio plugin. Go and use TFS. It's more seamless and it's a bigger tool. It will cost you more money, but you won't have some of the complexities, in terms of folks being able to do check-outs and check-ins. This Visual Studio plugin has been very complicated for the State of New Hampshire. It's caused a lot of problems. It's made me lose a lot of customers. I lost 81 customers last week alone. They don't like the product and I understand why. They have people in India developing it, who don't understand English, most of the time.
Even when you try to convey your message to them, there's all kinds of problems with dialog and interpretation that sometimes you get what you ask for, and sometimes you don't. Most of the time, you don't. You end up going back and forth, and back and forth to get any fix, then you get another re-fix. Then, you get another re-fix.
It's very hard to transfer the feeling when you have a platform that came to handle infrastructure issues, but at the end of the day, they are making real changes and impacting our business level, which is amazing, because it's very uncommon. That's it, basically.
We started this engagement with Automic working on basic scheduling. If you can just imagine an organization, which has around 10,000 written processes in Visual Basic or old code, and now we need to maintain these processes. They are very core processes because they are handling interactions between our customers to us; they are transferring data from our customers into our system. It's several thousands of PDFs, invoices and shipping notices, etc.
Up to the phase where we met with Automic, we just used manual stuff that we wrote to handle it. While using Automic, we created one mechanism of transferring data, and that's it. We need to just replicate it to other customers, and then you have thousands of Automic processes that are working by using only a single design for the rest of the customers, so we don't need to write code anymore.
By the way, another impact that we had using this process by transferring these invoices from one FTP site to another FTP site is the generation of invoices. In order to generate invoices to thousands of customers, we did some old code style process. We designed the process in the Automic, which basically does it faster.
Invoices: It's important they're faster, because at the end of the day when the driver needs to leave for the customer, I need to make sure that he will leave the logistics site as fast as he can. If I'm printing, 1,000 invoices in four hours, or if I'm printing 1,000 invoices in two hours, it makes a difference in my business process.
This is the must have in these processes for the customer, because if you are using Automic at the infrastructure level, then you have a problem because you are missing a whole step. Why? Because at the end of the day, the biggest impact that we have had when we started using Automic was when we embedded our digital processes with the tool. Today, Automic is the tool that helps us to manage all our digital strategy.
When you are going to some kind of a digital journey, you must have some kind of a tool or robotic platform that will enable you to manage the full cycle flow of the customer experience to a level of the data in the operational system process. When you are talking about putting the customer at the front of your business, if you don't have some kind of automation tool that enables you to integrate between the system, monitoring, enterprise data, analyses, trigger and action, and then to the multi challenge platforms, you don't have a digital strategy, and you need some kind of an orchestration behind it. This is what Automic is doing for us.
Today, this is the impact. In our business, we have a lot of operational costs. Let's say, we have 255 call center representatives and they are doing thousands of service transactions while speaking to our customers. By using Automic as an engine to our digital contact center, I'm doing almost 45,000 transactions per month, but it's on technology. It's our digital platform, which is orchestrated by Automic and some other tools, and few technologies behind the process.
So, if you're looking for the real impact, you must look at the integration of the Automic into your business application, in your customer journey, and into the digital process. This is what most organization are experiencing today.
We are in interruptive era at the moment, and everybody is looking how to reach customers, and how to manage a low cost operation and their digital strategy, because you need to invest a lot of resources. Instead of doing it in coding stuff and managing stuff behind the scenes, you need some kind of automation.
By the way, if you are the customer receiving an instant message from me, so an SMS, you have to understand that behind the scenes, there is a business process that somebody needs to manage, control, and make sure you are receiving this SMS. We, at O.P.S.I., are using Automic to do it because it is closing the full cycle.
We are always talking about leveraging the power of big data by automation, and we have a gap, but we didn't really implement it yet (the automation), which they have a great solution for, so the business continues in the cloud. We are not there, but we need to be there, and I think it's a little bit hard in our area.
Our area with the CA solution for DR is not really concerning directly to Automic, but to all of the DevOps, a word which is something that everybody is trying to touch on today in their daily business. There is also some gap that's a little bit hard to understand or to implement because not all the organizations are the same. When you are adopting DevOps, you may need to be more flexible in your processes.
But once again, we are not really using that because it is a little bit hard for us. We have rapid changes now in our digital strategy, because, at the end of the day, my business is to do service, and we are trying to improve in the service area and to be very near to our customer business needs. We didn't really make it to cope with the Automic road map, because we have a road map.
Around two to three years.
Yes. If Automic will be your automation platform or the orchestration platform, then you must build it in a high availability mode, which is what we did together with the guys from Automic. Now, this system is basically available 24/7. If one connector is failing, we have an HA connector that will replace it, so you must design the platform to be stable. The platform itself, it's stable. But once again, if you need to work 24/7, there is no way. I am working with the Custom Authority, and the Custom Authority in Israel is a very challenging organization. There is no way that we wouldn't be able to transfer data to customs, because if you don't transfer data, then we wouldn't be able to deliver to our customers abroad, so we need to be working 24/7 because a lot of stuff is being done automatically behind the scenes.
No, after we implemented, we didn't have any issues with the system. It's the core system today. It's one of the most important systems in our operation today, and once ensured that we had a high availability solution from them, then we started working 24/7 with no issues.
At the end of the day, I think there is an integration between good product, stable product, and a good delivery team. This symmetry, it makes stuff work well. When you're testing platforms, you know your enterprise, you have data functionality, and you have the delivery concept. At the end of the day, when you do the statistics of what you've tested, you need to decide. What helped us to decide, except from the function, the way the system works, was the approach of the guys from Automic, how they approach our business, how they help us do the analyses. They care. They just care.
I don't want to say just care. When you care about something, then you feel the difference. Then you are coming with all these big solutions and big company solutions which have tremendous platforms, but once again, they are too big, too robotic, and forgot the customer at the end of the day. It's one of the things that makes their stuff different for us.Technical Support:
Basically, here in Israel, we have very good support. The guys from Automic are assisting us, there is the world wide web, and we have a project manager that we work with. From the global perspective of how they help us, I think that we are pretty covered, and they are always trying to push new stuff, but once again, if we are thinking about improvement, it's a very big platform. We don't cover it all at the moment, and we are doing it step-by-step.
We had a few solutions. Most of them were code reading oriented, but it wasn't the platform. We didn't have any other platforms. We had tested another platform in that time, a very big one, which is not really relevant to this discussion, because I don't have anything bad to say about them, only from the point that they were too robotic for us. I think that Automic came with a very good approach in the delivery level. It's important, because when you're working at the delivery level, you can see the ROI that you will receive from the implementation.
It's a very good product and has a very good delivery level. Especially the guys that designed the solution over here are focused on the issues in the top 10 painful issues that we had, while resolving them during a very fast implementation. It gave us the boost to go with the digital area, the application area, and the business strategy area.
When I'm saying they care and were very focused on the issues, in three months, the implementation of the system was running right. Instead of going through all the processes and trying to upgrade all of them, or change the way we work in a rapid movement of things during the implementation, once the system and the change model was up and running, we did two things:
Then we stared to just transfer new projects to this platform. Then, in parallel, we took all staff for the scheduling, which is the simplest way, and in two to three months, we upgraded most of the scheduling items that we needed to handle. Then, the organization saw that we rapidly changed the way we were experiencing a problem, integration, etc.
From the implementation point of view, it was straightforward, very simple, and not complicated. Of course, you always have issues with creating various servers and SQL licenses. You must handle the server optimization because you have a lot of traffic, so you need to do an optimization of the right resources. We have a private cloud on our site, so it's easier for us to do the optimization of resources in the process, which is great. Then, you eliminate more issues when you're implementing a new platform. It's tricky and complicated, but we are an organization that works with a lot of legacy systems, which has very big systems, which usually has a lot of troubles and issues in transforming between platforms, between different applications with a legacy code. So, when you have the opportunity to work on a shelf platform, on an advanced platform, then it's very easy.
It's very important to see who does the delivery for you, and what's their approach. If the approach is simple and easy, not too rushed, then you can manage the process to receive the best results. It's important because this is what made the implementation very easy at the end of the day for us.
Once again, from a technical point of view, there were no issues.
Control-M from BMC was one of the applications which we looked at or tested. IBM also has some solutions in this area, and HP in the DevOps orchestration. They have very good platforms, very good approach, very scalable, very stable, and from my personal experience and perspective, it just helped my business grow and cope with all our digital challenges.
We started the concept of working with Automic when we looked for a tool that would help us to automate our business. It started in the infrastructure level, because everybody wanted to automate their infrastructure stuff to do basic scheduling and standard things that you are doing in an organization, especially in the IT department.
Basically, we are divided between infrastructure and business applications, so in my IT department where the infrastructure recedes, we have thousands of processors that were created there manually by coding with all kind of windows applications or something like that. In Israel, we are the biggest company who is doing deliveries and managing a global supply chain operation, so we have a lot of legacy systems. It's a 25 year-old company, and we have a lot of legacy systems and a lot of old code from the past years that we need to manage or handle.
We started off looking for an automation tool that would help us to just upgrade old processes to some kind of a new system, and that is how we found Automic.
I work at O.P.S.I., which is an authorized service contractor for UPS in Israel. Basically, the first challenge is that we are not really UPS, we are just an ASC, an authorized service contractor, so we are totally independent and are working like a standalone company, but we have a lot of integration with the global UPS. We have UPS system and applications that we must use because it's part of the agreement.
Here in Israel, we are identified totally brown with the logo and everything. Just one issue, this is why I mention it, because when somebody is talking about us worldwide and in Israel, we mention our name as O.P.S.I., an authorized service contractor for UPS. People need to know that we are a subcontractor for them and not really a brown branch here in Israel. Basically, just to let you know, we have 155 authorized service contractors like us worldwide.
As for additional advice, just pick stuff where you can and go for the quick win. The first phases of this project must be dedicated to understanding the mechanism and the platform, because when you're going with the simple stuff, you have the chance or the opportunity to test the system. We had thousands of processors with thousands of challenges, but once again, we started with the infrastructure. We succeeded over there, then we went to the application.
We started at the lowest level of the implementation. After we learned the system, we learned how it behaved. We learned the ability of the system, then we went to the application. I think what has amazed me the whole time is that I have fully automated business processes in this difficult area, so it's an excitement because you started in transferring files from one server to another, then you are managing your digital business strategy with this platform (my CEO knows this platform).
It's not like you are installing some kind of a monitoring tool. When you are starting small, infrastructure and then application, then turning this application into a core system, it is something else. So my humble advice from my experience is to start small and start with the pain points. Learn the system, learn the capabilities, then slide to the business level.
The visibility into what normally a monolithic script would do with the audit trail and version control features makes troubleshooting jobs a breeze. I use to have to manually code in logging tricks into my scripts, then parse though these file to see what was happening during execution. With AWA, I simply view the last run, or any previous run, and can visually see what happened with the ability to drill down to a specific part of the workflow. Viewing past modifications to objects would require a third party version management product with a check-out/check-in process; with Automic, every save is shown in a tab on the object.
The main improvement is the time it saves in troubleshooting an issue. The common phrase, “There is a script somewhere that does that”, is no longer heard. A single pane of glass view and visual representation of workflows exponentially reduces time to recovery.
The direction of the product and the way that they add visibility into a script are amazing, but there are limitations in self administration automation and stability issues.
There are two main areas which I think the product needs to improve on:
Personally, I’ve use this product for 18 months. The organization has used it almost 5 years.
Yes, as mentioned before, we are constantly having issues due to bugs or things that should work, but don’t. In a high demand, time critical environment, it is not viewed as a reliable product requiring use of external means to continue when there is an outage.
No, it is extremely easy to scale up or down. Adding an Agent or an Automation Engine is simply connecting or removing it. Adding new workflows and tasks require no redesign inside the application.
To be honest, I have had to come up with the majority of the fixes to my issues, and the times that I couldn’t were known bugs. We are a company where an hour or two outages majorly impact us and their support SLAs do not come close to ours.
The company previously used AutoSys. To my understanding, they switched for cost reasons.
I was told that it took over six months and was difficult.
I don’t have much to do with this, but I’ve been told it is cheaper than the competition.
I wasn’t around for this.
Setting up a new installation is straightforward and easy. It is well documented on their site.
Single tool used for all automation requirements to handle all types of jobs such as Oracle, FTP, SAP, etc.
Reporting facility could be better.
I've been using it for 2+ years.
No issues as such. Installation and management is easy.
No issues with stability. Highly stable environment.
No issues with scalability. Can handle large number of servers or batch jobs without issues.
Technical support is good. 10 out of 10. There is a web-based GUI to record all your issues and track them. Immediate help is available in crisis situations.
Initial setup is quite simple. Also all required documentation is available as well as support is available from vendor.
Implementation was in-house.
Good solution for a complex environment.
Pricing and licensing costs are based on number of servers. It is up to budget and a small scale/mid scale organisation can opt for this tool.
If you are looking for solution for all your automation needs within a good budget you should go for this tool. It has all the required features which can compete with all other scheduling tools in market.