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Architect at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Provides a holistic view of jobs, a nice interface, and offers lots of plugins
Pros and Cons
  • "The Control-M interface is good for creating, monitoring, and ensuring the delivery of files as part of our data pipeline. There's a wealth of information in both the full client, as well as the web interface that they have. Both are very easy to use and provide all the necessary material to understand how to do various tasks. The help feature is very useful and informative and everything is very easy to understand."
  • "Some of the documentation could use some improvement, however, it gets you from point A to point B pretty quickly to get the solution in place."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for automation, orchestrating and automating the workloads, and being able to schedule tasks. Prior to Control-M, we were manually running jobs or there was either a scheduled task on Windows, getting Task Scheduler, or we'd have a script laid out that someone would have to run through manually on a daily basis. 

We learned about Control-M and felt that it could take over that process and have it automated, while also providing some monitoring and notifications so that if something did fail, we could easily be notified and keep track of it.

How has it helped my organization?

It provides a holistic view of jobs that are scheduled to run. We haven't done full production on it yet. Hopefully, we'll be in production by July or August this year. That said, so far from what we can see, it's going to free up some time for certain staff that has been running these tasks manually overnight. Now, if someone gets notified of an issue, then they can address the issue. In the long run, it'll free up some time and resources to focus on other tasks. 

What is most valuable?

I like the interface, including how I can see everything and how I can put the jobs together. Depending on the experience, I can either use the GUI or I can use the command line to create jobs based on JSON scripts. It provides that flexibility for someone who has no experience of using Control-M as well as with someone who's a full-blown developer that can get very complex with creating these jobs. Generally, it provides a good interface for everyone with different levels of experience.

Control-M doesn't really process data as far as I can tell. It orchestrates other scripts. From what I understand, Control-M doesn't really ingest or analyze any data. It's a tool to help with the processing of data on different platforms. I can tell it to run a script on one server, to send the data over to another SQL server, or a different platform, Power BI for example, and run a script on Power BI so that it can ingest the data when it gets there and do what it needs to do. Once that's finished, I can send it to another platform to put a dashboard together based on when that data is available.

Once one understands the process of how it functions, it's pretty simple and straightforward to create, integrate, and automate the pipelines. There is a learning curve to understand how it all works, all the components, and all the requirements for parameters and different options. However, it's pretty simple once someone has a basic understanding of how it all works.

The Control-M interface is good for creating, monitoring, and ensuring the delivery of files as part of our data pipeline. There's a wealth of information in both the full client, as well as the web interface that they have. Both are very easy to use and provide all the necessary material to understand how to do various tasks. The help feature is very useful and informative and everything is very easy to understand.

It’s great that Control-M orchestrates all our workflows, including file transfers, applications, data sources, data pipelines, and infrastructure with plugins. There are a lot of plugins and we haven't used all of them yet. Primarily, we've only used the file transfer plugin, the Azure file service, and Azure functions. Primarily, the developers have used that to put the various tasks and workloads in place. While we haven't fully utilized everything in Control-M yet, we're learning how to use the various functionalities and transitioning from our legacy scripts and data sources. 

What needs improvement?

Some of the documentation could use some improvement, however, it gets you from point A to point B pretty quickly to get the solution in place.

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October 2022
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For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for almost a year. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It seems stable. I haven't rolled the solution out to a very large environment yet. The solution we're working on right now seems to be working fine. All the issues we've seen have to do with us figuring out connectivity between Control-M and the cloud services, however, I haven't had any experiences with issues around stability with Control-M.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Right now, it's a small deployment and we have it in four environments. We have it in our dev, QA, UAT, and production environments. Right now, there are two application teams that are using Control-M, however, we have another two or three teams that are looking to get onboarded.

It's pretty scalable. I haven't done a deep dive look into it the scalability, and we haven't identified a need yet to scale out. It seems pretty scalable, yet I'm not sure as I can't speak from personal experience. I don't have experience with it yet.

How are customer service and support?

It was a challenge to get the direction on how Control-M should be implemented. As we learned about new requirements from the customer, implementing those with help from the engineers at BMC was hard. The third-party contractors were one issue, however, when I escalated it to our customer representative, he was able to get me in touch with a dedicated BMC engineer and she was able to give me the information I needed and provided the context and direction on the best approaches. I wasn't able to use the third-party engineer that was assigned to us, however, the internal resource was a great partnership to help move this along.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Neutral

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We were using Microsoft and internal tools. We used the basic Windows tools that were built in.

We went with this product to centralize the deployment and to centralize the management of all of the workloads.

How was the initial setup?

Some of the installation components were really complex. I'm more on the infrastructure-based side of Control-M, I deploy it and then get it ready for functional use so that the application developers, script developers, and workload developers could easily access it. It took me three weeks to figure out the requirements for getting the SSL certificates as the documentation wasn't really clear on what those requirements were. Once we figured it out, it was simple, however, the support staff couldn't give me the right information to understand what was required.

It seemed like there was a gap in expectations on what was required for certificates. In terms of the installation overall, it wasn't clear what each variable or what each configuration point was referring to until we were well versed with how everything functioned. Then we were able to say, "Oh, this is what that field meant and this is what was required here." However, during the installation process, there was very limited information on what was being asked at each configuration point.

In terms of strategy, there was a challenge with the customer. I was the third or fourth resource that was brought onto the project. The first three people that handled it, internally and externally, had trouble figuring out what the expectations were. I was handed the baton at the last moment. I had to tie up loose ends and try to get this up and running for the CIO before he started to send up red flags to BMC.

What about the implementation team?

We had an integrator, however, setting up the timing with the integrator was a challenge. What I got from my company and the general expectations weren't clear. When I did get clarification, I wasn't able to get ahold of the contractor since he required a week or two weeks lead time. We then ran behind based on the lack of information I got. Setting up time and requirements was a challenge.

I'm also a contractor working for a customer. Being a third party, trying to work with another third party with minimal information from the client, was just a challenge all around.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

There was another team handling the pricing. I'm not sure of the exact costs. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Our customer chose this solution. 

What other advice do I have?

We do not use the Control-M Python client and cloud data service integrations with AWS and GCP and we do not use Control-M to deliver analytics for complex data pipelines yet.

We haven't gone into production yet, so we haven't rolled this out to all our customers. We're still testing the features and we'll be starting the UAT in two to three weeks.

Right now, we're still in the early stages of rolling everything out. We've gone through the testing in our development environment and in QA to make sure things are good. Now, we're testing performance in UAT internally, and then we'll have customer validation within a few weeks before we go into production.

The solution will play a very critical role in day-to-day operations. However, it'll be at least two months before it becomes critical. Right now, it's still being implemented and evaluated.

It is pretty flexible on various cloud solutions, working with different cloud technologies and platforms. I would say potential users should take a look at it. It does provide a lot of flexibility, especially with the application and integration component that they have. The developers seem to really be able to get what they need out of the AI or the application into an integrated product or feature set.

Before installing Control-M, have a sit down with the Control-M solutions engineer and make sure you share with them all of the details of what you'd like to accomplish before deploying the solution. My client just said, "We want this" and they didn't give us the details about what they were looking for. We ended up having to redesign a few features, as those items were not clarified as part of the installation. When I was brought on board, the customer didn't mention they wanted HA, so that came later. At that point, we had to reinstall and add more servers.

The person who signed the contract was focused on MFTE, which is the enterprise file transfer tool or managed file transfer tool. However, later, the architecture team decided not to use that and go with another tool. Due to that decision, the client could have gone with a SaaS solution instead of the on-premises solution to Control-M and saved a lot of time, money, and hassle on deploying the on-premises infrastructure. So my advice to others is to make sure that the needs and the functional usage of the tool are identified clearly before purchasing or implementing the tool.

I'd rate this tool ten out of ten. It does what it says it does. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
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ITSM Implementation Manager at a transportation company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Provides us with a unified view where we can easily define, orchestrate, and monitor all of our application workflows and data pipelines
Pros and Cons
  • "The ability to integrate file transfers has been instrumental in allowing us to accomplish the things we need with Control-M. In our industry, we take a lot of data and either push it down to the stores or retail grocery stores. We take files and push them down to the stores or pull files and information from the stores and bring it back to corporate. So, it's two-way communication with file transfers. One of the bigger things that we do with Control-M is scheduling data moves and moving data from one location to another."
  • "The MFT applications should have more functionality and flexibility within that tool. Having more flexibility with that tool for handling the one to many or many to one concept. Like being able to take data from one source and push it to many locations or pull data from many locations and bring it back into a single source. That's why we still use our TPS program for the file transfers just because we don't have some of those capabilities available to us within MFT."

What is our primary use case?

I manage the team responsible for the tool itself, the administration of the system. We have a separate team internally that does all the operations and scheduling facets of the tool.

Our primary use case includes supply chain, payroll, accounting, information technology, pricing validations, etc. Most of the areas of the business have some facet into Control-M.

How has it helped my organization?

We have automated critical processes with Control-M. It is critical in a lot of different processes. We use it for all of our server patchings every month, we schedule that so that it kicks off the job every month, then goes and updates all of our Linux servers, for example, or our Windows servers. It does deployments and things that are critical to IT business.

Automating this critical process has taken the human aspect out of that process. So, that user no longer has to be up in the middle of the night to do server patching. That's all hands-free, completely zero downtime, knowing back to the customers. It's been beneficial in that regard.

Control-M helped improve data transfers. Specifically things like processing sales information. So we have all the data from our various retail locations, our individual stores that get processed every day automatically using Control-M. And we have our daily pricing information that we send to the stores to update all the pricing for all the different locations. Those would be some of the bigger areas of business automation.

It has helped to improve data transfers. Specifically things like processing sales information. So, we have all the data from our various retail locations, our individual stores that get processed every day automatically using Control-M. And we have our daily pricing information that we send to the stores to update all the pricing for all the different locations.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are the scheduling aspects of the tool and to have everything scheduled and automated to be able to run on a set timeframe.

It's important to our work because we can set it and forget it. We don't have to worry about logging in and pulling that data every day or manipulating the data. It can be run on a schedule and then the proper timing after dependencies are run.

Control-M provides us with a unified view where we can easily define, orchestrate, and monitor all of our application workflows and data pipelines. It's not super important in my particular line, but it is important for the operations and scheduling team that use the tool.

We use mobile interfaces. They allow the development teams to be able to go in and set up the jobs that they need to schedule them accordingly. There's still quite a bit of a gap between the two tools. So, a lot of our users still prefer to use the desktop client.

We use Control-M to integrate our file transfers within our application workflows. But we do not use the BMC MFT program. We use a different third-party file transfer tool.

The ability to integrate file transfers has been instrumental in allowing us to accomplish the things we need with Control-M. In our industry, we take a lot of data and either push it down to the stores or retail grocery stores. We take files and push them down to the stores or pull files and information from the stores and bring it back to corporate. So, it's two-way communication with file transfers. One of the bigger things that we do with Control-M is scheduling data moves and moving data from one location to another.

We also use Control-M to streamline our data and analytics projects. It's not doing any automation now. That would be done with the tools that it feeds, like Cognos or other reporting tools. It just collects data for us.

The integrated guides and how-to videos in the solution's web interface are okay for some of the basic user questions that we get for how to use the tool and do some of the basics, but from an admin standpoint, which is what I'm responsible for with my team, they're not very helpful. We still go back to BMC Docs, open tickets when we need to, and things of that nature to get the information.

What needs improvement?

The MFT applications should have more functionality and flexibility within that tool. Having more flexibility with that tool for handling the one to many or many to one concept. Like being able to take data from one source and push it to many locations or pull data from many locations and bring it back into a single source. That's why we still use our TPS program for the file transfers just because we don't have some of those capabilities available to us within MFT.

It is still a little difficult to get support on Control-M. It seems to be its own very specific BMC product unlike Remedy and some of the other BMC tools we have. It's quite a bit more difficult to get support for Control-M.

I would rate their support a five out of ten. They're just average to adequate. 

You don't have the option to have a dedicated support resource and engineer. Someone that works with you individually to understand your environment, to help you grow and adapt to new things, and to roadmap your maturity within the tool as you do with some of the other BMC tools.

We use Premier Support for other BMC tools, just not this one.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Control-M for two and a half years. The company started using the product in 2014.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's very stable. We have no complaints in this area. The application is very well built and it is reliable. We were also very focused on the idea of availability when we built our environment.  We are setup with both high availability and a fail-over environments. If we were to have problems with a particular server, we have the secondary to fail over to.  Or, worst case, another environment to use in our secondary datacenter.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability is excellent. It's easy enough to spin up another server and add it to the server group.

Pretty much every application that we have in this company has some kind of Control-M piece to it. That's everything from accounting and payroll for our stores and customer interfaces. We're pushing and pulling data and doing different job-related things for almost all applications.

We'll continually use Control-M. Our IT business has 3,400 people. Control-M is mostly used by some of our development teams, traditional application development groups that develop our in-house applications. We have our system administrators, our infrastructure teams, IT security, operations, and those types of groups.

We require only one staff member for day-to-day administration. She was responsible for all the day-to-day administration of the tool like adding users, provisioning users, making sure hotfixes are applied to system upgrades.  

We recently did overall system health initiatives. It was also a point of contact for our operations scheduling group. If they have questions on the tool if there are any issues, or things of that nature.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support through BMC Support can be challenging at times.  If any issues need to be escalated to R&D then you have to work with directly with the team in Israel.  This can cause problems coordinating between time zones.  

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We previously used ESP. There were a few reasons the company decided to move from ESP to BMC Control-M.   

1. The need for a product that was distributed based vs. mainframe based.  The company was working to retire the mainframe so there wasn't as much of a need for a product that was heavily mainframe focused. 

2. We were told that BMC Remedy and BMC Control-M were integrated so job failure ticket automation would be simple.

3. There was a desire to have the same vendor for our automation, orchestration, monitoring, CMDB, and ITSM tools.  BMC was able to meet this requirement.

What about the implementation team?

For the initial conversion, we used BMC. Through the last couple of upgrades, we used other BMC preferred partners.

We have used both CFS and Cetan Corporation to assist us with upgrading the application.  Both companies were knowledgeable and we were able to perform the upgrades without problems.

Recently, we have been able to upgrade the environments without assistance from a third party.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The licensing and pricing are bundled together with our other BMC products. I don't know the specific cost of Control-M by itself. For us, it is based on how many jobs we run annually.  We run roughly 9,000 jobs a year.

If I had to guess, I would say it's in the neighborhood of about $250,000.

Since it is based on a per-job run, if we increase the number of jobs that we run annually, the cost will increase accordingly.

There are also additional operational costs, hardware for servers, databases, BMC maintenance, etc.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Yes, other vendors were evaluated at that time.  Control-M was selected primarily because of the integration between it and other BMC tools.

What other advice do I have?

Make sure that you spend enough time to design and build your environment, both high availability and failover are critical to overall success.  Because we rely on Control-M so heavily, it needs to always be available. Control-M is critical to the success of our business, we cannot accept downtime. We do everything we can to keep the system running 24/7, 365. For example, we have invested additional time and resources to fully automate our monthly server patching. Now we can patch our environment with zero impact to jobs. 

Another piece of advice, use BMC as a partner for professional services, especially when doing your initial implementation.  It is a big endeavor and BMC can help you be successful.  Lastly, spend time training your staff on how to use and administer the product.  Control-M is a powerful but complex application.  It requires skilled and knowledgeable operators and admins to keep the system working well.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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Buyer's Guide
Control-M
October 2022
Learn what your peers think about Control-M. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: October 2022.
635,987 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Gana Muthanna - PeerSpot reviewer
Control-M Administrator at Cognizant
Real User
User-friendly GUI, responsive support, and the BIM feature helps us meet our SLAs
Pros and Cons
  • "BIM is helpful because we do not miss any SLAs, as we get to know the issue well in advance. It is the topmost service that has helped us provide better solutions for the business."
  • "The reporting functionality needs a lot of work. We have faced problems with different versions where we run the right report, but it gives us blank entries. Then, when we run the same report again, it gives the correct data."

What is our primary use case?

Our organization has multiple projects that use Control-M, and I support the banking domain. In the past, I have worked on projects for retail organizations and medical companies.

We have approximately 150 applications in our current project. These include Loanpower, erwin, and OpenLink.

How has it helped my organization?

With the use of Control-M, our SLAs are met more often. If there is an issue, we identify it in advance, before the problem occurs.

Control-M helps us in terms of automation because it has various scripts in different formats. We can run a Python program or a shell script, and these allow us to automate almost everything.

This product helps to secure our business because we can restrict users.

We have automated several critical processes with Control-M. One is used during patching, where we log in and type one command that will stop and start the services on all of the servers that we have. We have approximately 10 servers in production and five in non-production, so it's a lot of work to restart all of the servers. We also have automation that performs a health check. It runs every day at a scheduled time and will delete all jobs in production that are older than five days. Similarly, we have jobs that check to ensure certain conditions are being met and will check the various alerts that can occur.

Automating these processes has improved our business because every morning, we have to send a status update to show that the components are working. This is something that we used to do manually. We would log into CCM and check everything. Now, we have automated that using a script, wherein it sends the status email automatically to whichever business users request it. It has helped to reduce a lot of manual activity.

Control-M has definitely helped us to resolve issues faster. I estimate that the improvement is between 60% and 70%.

Our service-level operations performance has improved by 80% with the use of Control-M.

What is most valuable?

The GUI is very user-friendly. It provides us with a single view and we have everything in the same UI. This is very important because we don't spend a lot of time switching tabs or opening Control-M for different purposes. We have a single GUI open and it saves a lot of time.

Two really helpful features are Forecast and Business Impact Manager (BIM).

BIM is helpful because we do not miss any SLAs, as we get to know the issue well in advance. It is the topmost service that has helped us provide better solutions for the business.

Forecast is useful in terms of patching, etc, because whenever we are looking for downtime or any team is looking for downtime, it's easy for us to use Forecast to find it.

Self-service is helpful and our business users appreciate it because they don't have to have Control-M installed on their machine. They can log in using the web portal.

What needs improvement?

The reporting functionality needs a lot of work. We have faced problems with different versions where we run the right report, but it gives us blank entries. Then, when we run the same report again, it gives the correct data. We have spoken with Customer Care and some of the issues are fixed in the latest version, 9.20.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Control-M for 11 years and my company has been using it for longer than that.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This is a pretty stable solution. We have not had any downtime.

A couple of times, the agent has gone down unexpectedly. However, in terms of the EM and server, it's pretty stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Our organization is pretty big, with approximately 250,000 employees, and we have multiple projects that use Control-M. We have approximately 150 applications in our current project, and there are about 175 employees that are actively using Control-M. That is across three different countries.

It is easy to scale. It can handle a lot of job flows and it's easy to create multiple jobs to run at the same time. We are expanding in terms of jobs for the same application because they have a lot of upgrades going on at the application level. 

We are not planning to expand the number of applications in our project as of now. We do have requests, but it's a slow process. We can add perhaps five or six applications a year.

Overall, we have no problems in terms of scalability. 

How are customer service and technical support?

When we can't find a solution to an issue, we reach out to BMC customer support and they respond almost immediately. Overall, the technical support team is very good and I would rate them a nine or ten out of ten.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did not migrate to Control-M from a competing solution. Some of our clients, although not my current project, migrated to Control-M from different products. The reasons for changing products are the additional features available in Control-M, as well as the ease of use. Also, some people are more confident in the security that Control-M provides, compared to other tools on the market.

Personally, I started my career with Control-M and have been using it ever since.

In the company, we have a couple of clients who use IBM Tivoli Workload Scheduler (TWS), AutoSys, and Stonebranch. However, the majority of our clients use Control-M. The choice of solution stems from requirements and input from the client.

One of the reasons that some clients are not using Control-M is because of the cost. For a client with 5,000 or more jobs, they definitely implement Control-M. However, if they are running only 200 or 300 jobs in a small environment, there are other native tools available.

How was the initial setup?

I was not part of the implementation at my company but I have implemented several Control-M projects. The initial setup is straightforward.

First, we download the files from the BMC site and then start the installation. This involves running the setup files and if there is any error, you have knowledge base articles and you also have AMIGO support if you enroll in it.

The deployment can be completed in a day or two, including the Enterprise Manager (EM), servers, and agents. There are also conversion tools that are available to assist with creating jobs.

Our implementation strategy began with installing the Enterprise Manager first, and then the server, and then the agents. We would raise a support ticket so that whenever we had any issues, we could reach out to them.

I did not look at the interactive guides or videos that Control-M provides for reducing time to full productivity. I had all of the documentation handy but I did not refer to any of the videos.

What about the implementation team?

Our in-house team is responsible for deployment.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Control-M is priced accordingly for larger environments. It is expensive for smaller environments with only a few hundred jobs running.

There are two different types of licenses available. The first is based on the number of jobs that we run per day, and the other is based on the number of agents that we install. My current project has a contract for five years. During the first two years, we are allowed to run any number of jobs using any number of agents. However, in the last three years, we have to stick to whatever is defined in the contract.

In past versions, BIM and Forecast were separate components that were available at an additional cost. Since version 9, however, everything is included and there are no costs in addition to the standard licensing fees.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

For my current project, the client has always used Control-M.

What other advice do I have?

The latest version of Control-M is 9.20 but we are working with 9.18 because our client has certain servers where the OS is not compatible with 9.20. It is running on Linux machines and at this point, our client hasn't given us approval for the OS upgrade.

Our business users don't typically use Control-M. They have access to it but only use it when a critical chain is stuck and they want to check it themselves. They can use self-service for this, although most of the time, they don't.

An example of why they would use self-service is when a critical batch has failed and is stuck for a long time, and they want to see the approximate time that it will be completed. Also, during an audit, they can use self-service to see which users have certain access, such as production access or write permissions.

The Control-M users in our company have different roles. We have administrators, and we have people who specialize in migration. We also have people who look into scheduling and we have a team that just takes care of monitoring.

The number of people that we require for the day-to-day administration depends on the size of the project. In my current project, we have approximately 8,000 jobs actively running. We have approximately 17,000 configured. In our L1 team, we have eleven people, and we have eight members for each of our L2 and L3 teams.

We do not use the Control-M integrated file transfer capability in our workflows, although we do use the File Watcher feature. We have a tool from Axway called SecureTransport, where they handle the file transfer, but we can define this as part of a Control-M job.

The biggest lesson that I have learned from using Control-M is that anything can be automated. You can control various applications and it is simple to schedule jobs for products like SAP and databases.

My advice for anybody who is considering Control-M is that it has a wide variety of features compared to other tools. It is flexible, easy to use, and the web portal makes it simple for business users or application teams to access it without having to install it on a Windows server or a Citrix platform. 

I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor. The reviewer's company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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Batch Scheduling Administrator at a computer software company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Feature-rich, easy to install and maintain, offers helpful videos and how-to guides
Pros and Cons
  • "The best part about this product is that it has a lot of features. Control-M doesn't limit us and we can use it for a lot of things."
  • "When it comes to supporting cloud services, Control-M is a bit slow. We are not advancing with the technology because we don't have the modules that can interact or use the new application services provided by the cloud technologies."

What is our primary use case?

We use Control-M to provide business services to our customers. The use cases involve Hadoop, a lot of file transfers, and SQL scripts. In our business, automation is used for many things and we use a lot of the Control-M modules. For example, we connect to SAP, with databases, Hadoop, MFT, Informatica, and other technologies.

What we do relates to many different business services in a retail environment.

We have hybrid deployment; over the past two years, we have had a mix of on-premises and cloud-based implementations. Ultimately, we are moving to the cloud. We are using AWS, GCP, and Azure.

How has it helped my organization?

The main benefit is that Control-M can work with almost all of the applications that are on the market right now. We work with technologies including Hadoop, Informatica, all kinds of databases, and file transfer with MFT tools. The real potential with Control-M is that it can be used for everything you want.

It is really important that our clients can manage their own application workflow with full autonomy. Our customers are using this capability a lot and it helps because we don't need to be present when they want to perform a simple task. It's better for them because they don't need to wait to ask or to have something changed. They can just do it themselves. Also, it's better for us because we have more time to do other things.

The expanded capabilities in version 2020 for planning and monitoring have had a positive effect on our clients' operations, as well as our own. It saves a lot of time when it comes to developing and implementing things. As a result of saving time, both us and our clients are saving money.

Control-M has definitely helped us to achieve faster issue resolution, although it is difficult for me to estimate how much by. We don't have metrics that are suitable for tracking this kind of thing.

What is most valuable?

The best part about this product is that it has a lot of features. Control-M doesn't limit us and we can use it for a lot of things.

Control-M is easy to install, use, and maintain. It is easier to work with than other products.

The web interface hosts a lot of videos and webinars and I really appreciate this because I find them very helpful. They have tutorials that explain how to approach the new technologies and explain how things can be done using Control-M. This is something that I use a lot.

The Application Integrator is helpful because not all applications have a module available in Control-M, and we can use this feature to create them.

What needs improvement?

When it comes to supporting cloud services, Control-M is a bit slow. We are not advancing with the technology because we don't have the modules that can interact or use the new application services provided by the cloud technologies. BMC has been telling me that they are working hard to be more aligned with these new technologies, but they are a bit slow. Consequently, we are having a few issues when it comes to implementing Control-M. Some services that are being offered, such as Databricks, have been a problem.

The documentation is something that needs to be improved. Years ago, the documentation was very good, and I don't understand why but the documentation is no longer as good as it should be. For example, if I need to install or upgrade Control-M Enterprise Manager or Control-M server, the only information that I have in the documentation are things like "Execute this and follow the instructions on the screen".  What it doesn't tell you is what will be needed for the process. For example, you may need to enter a password or select a source, but you won't know what these parameters are in advance.

Also, it is different to find what you are looking for in terms of documentation. For instance, if you visit the Control-M download page, you see several tabs. There is a tab where you can download software and another tab where you can download patches. This is perfect. However, there is another tab for the documentation but there is never anything there.

With any Control-M product, it is hard to find the documentation. The reason for this is that they are moving all of the documentation online, in an HTML format. The problem is that it is hard to download documentation in this format. In particular, if it is a specific part that you need or a certain module, then it would be much easier to have a PDF version like they used to have. Consequently, it is more difficult for us to pass the documentation to our internal teams.

For example, if we are trying to configure a module for Informatica or SAP, it's hard because we don't have PDF documentation. We need to go online but it is difficult because it is very hard to find what you are looking for.

Another area of improvement for Control-M is the version release lifecycle. Prior to 2018, we had the same, main version of Control-M for two or three years. Since 2018, they have been releasing a new version every year. There was a 2018, 2019, and 2020 version. It seems that these new versions are being released in an unfinished state because we are seeing a lot of bugs. Historically, it has been very stable, but from a point between two and three years ago, it has not been so much so. It seems that the problem is that the versions are changing too quickly.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Control-M for nine years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

There are some limits to scalability in terms of cloud integration. There is some integration with cloud services but it is very simple. It is called the Application Integrator Module. This is a very good feature but the problem is that if we have to interact with cloud services, we need to create all of these modules on our own. We are paying a lot of money for a product where we have to create our own modules, which is not perfect.

It is very good that we have the Application Integrator available but for services that are being used by a lot of companies, we need official support from BMC.

How are customer service and technical support?

I would rate the technical support an eight out of ten.

We have been dealing with BMC for several years and when you consider the support from a few years ago, the response that we received was more technical and more accurate regarding the problem that we were having.

As it is now, more and more we are seeing that the customer support has to rely on the product development team to resolve the issue. This is because there are a lot of bugs in the product and customer support cannot provide a solution for these. Instead, the problem has to be fixed by development, and then a patch is released to solve the problem.

For this reason, I am rating the support an eight instead of ten.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We have had cases where our clients migrated to Control-M from a competing solution. In fact, we did a migration last year from TWS, the Tivoli Workload Scheduler from IBM, to Control-M using the conversion tool. The tool was very important because it reduced a lot of work.

The problem is that the conversion was not as good as it should be. I estimate that we had to modify 90% of the jobs because the conversion was not good enough. It was still important because it would have taken a lot longer to create all of the jobs from scratch. That said, it was not perfect, at least that was our experience with migrating from TWS.

We were using TWS and another one that is called Visual TOM. It is another product that is similar to Control-M. These are both scheduling products, but Control-M has tons of features that the other ones don't have. They don't have the modules, the plug-ins, or the Automation API. They are stable and they are good, but we can't use them like you use Control-M because Control-M permits us to perform many more things. Unfortunately, with the many more things that you can do, it does introduce more opportunities for failure. However, this is true of any feature-rich solution. The more complex it is, the more prone to error it is.

How was the initial setup?

Control-M is easy to install and maintain. There are not a lot of steps required to upgrade or downgrade from one version to another. With other products that I've been using, it is difficult and complicated to upgrade because there are a lot of confusing steps. But with control-M, you need only follow the onscreen instructions.

The length of time required to deploy depends on the customer. The scope and complexity of the client's requirements dictate the amount of time it will take to complete. For example, we can deploy for a smaller customer in one week. However, for a large retail customer, it could take a month to complete.

We have one client right now, where we are upgrading from Control-M 2018 to 2019, and it is going to take us almost three months to complete. Part of the reason it takes this long is that when you try to upgrade a production environment, it's really difficult to get a window to perform the upgrade or the installation or the modification. That said, it's still easier than many other products.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Pricing varies depending on which components and modules you are using.

What other advice do I have?

My advice for anybody who is considering Control-M is that I recommend it. Although it's not perfect, it is relatively easy to use and maintain.

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud
Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor. The reviewer's company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
PeerSpot user
Robert-Stinnett - PeerSpot reviewer
Sr. Automation Engineer at a computer software company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 10
Our developers use the automation API and Jobs-as-Code to kick off jobs without having to write something manually
Pros and Cons
  • "It provides a unified view where you can orchestrate and monitor all your application workloads and data pipelines. That's very important because with cloud, software as a service, edge computing, traditional data center, and legacy apps, there are all these environments. If you don't have that single pane of glass or that one place to look at, you're going to invest a lot of time and resources into tracking things down when they go wrong."
  • "They really need to work on improving the web interface, as there are still a lot of bugs... In general, they need to do a lot of work on shoring up their testing and quality assurance. A lot of bugs seem to make it into the product."

What is our primary use case?

The business services that Control-M supports for our organization include everything from finances, marketing, data analysis, big data, data lakes—pretty much everything.

We have it on-prem and we also use it in the cloud. We still have most of our components in the data center right now.

How has it helped my organization?

When it comes to data analytics, Control-M helps make sure that as we're ingesting data and running it, that the workflows are kicking off in the correct order, and that we're actually getting the data. It's also making sure we return data to the appropriate business units or partners. It definitely streamlines our data analytics. It has sped things up because we don't have to wait on humans anymore to kick things off.

Our line-of-business personnel use Control-M's web interfaces and it gives them a view, a red-light/green-light dashboard. They can see if things are behind or ahead. It helps them keep track of the stuff that's important to them without having to call other people or put in tickets.

In addition, the use of Control-M as part of our DevOps automation toolchains and leveraging of its “as-code” interfaces for developers has considerably sped up our ability to roll out new applications and application updates. It's also allowed our developers, even when they have one-off projects, to easily use the automation API and Jobs-as-Code to kick those off without having to write that kind of function by hand or find another tool. It has been a big part of our DevOps process.

We have also automated critical processes with Control-M. The top-three are 

  1. a number of financial processes
  2. data ingestion
  3. and what we call partner management. 

Those automations mean we get things done consistently and on time. It also lets us know if we're not going to meet our deadlines and enables us to be proactive instead of reactive.

By using Control-M 20’s Role-Based Administration feature, we have been able to decentralize teams to manage their own application workflow orchestration environments. That's important because it frees up resources. People can get things done more quickly without having to stop what they're doing. And it allows them to focus, instead of constantly being pulled in a thousand directions or having to call in different people for help. It helps eliminate tickets or requests to a Control-M administrator, and that frees up our operations personnel to focus on what's more important for the business. Instead of watching for and answering tickets, they're actually able to be proactive and look for potential bottlenecks or to help people enhance their processes.

Another benefit comes from using Control-M 20's Centralized Connection Profiles. Being able to store all connection profiles in a central database helps with efficiencies, with DevOps initiatives, and it helps with ownership.

The extended capabilities of version 20, especially the web interface, help because we don't have to deploy clients or maintain the clients. It lets pretty much anybody who wants to use it just fire up a web browser and use it. That's the biggest capability of version 20, for us.

Overall, Control-M lets us spot problems more quickly. And in terms of Service Level Operations performance, it helps because we now can be proactive instead of reactive. If we know that we're not going to meet an SLA, we can meet ahead of time instead of having to wait and see.

What is most valuable?

Among the most valuable features are

  • the measuring and monitoring of the SLAs, the service level agreements—they code in recovery actions for when things go wrong
  • the single pane of glass enables us to see everything, all the processes, in one place
  • the ability to integrate with all sorts of different platforms and services.

It provides a unified view where you can orchestrate and monitor all your application workloads and data pipelines. That's very important because with cloud, software as a service, edge computing, traditional data center, and legacy apps, there are all these environments. If you don't have that single pane of glass or that one place to look at, you're going to invest a lot of time and resources into tracking things down when they go wrong. You really need that single pane of glass to show you what's going on across all your disparate systems, in one location.

We also have Control-M for internal and external file transfers. It's really just a part of our normal, everyday procedures. It makes sure that they happen. It makes sure that we got the files. It makes sure that data has flowed back to the appropriate departments.

What needs improvement?

They really need to work on improving the web interface, as there are still a lot of bugs. 

Also, the new Helix Control-M version doesn't seem quite ready for prime time for many of us. 

In general, they need to do a lot of work on shoring up their testing and quality assurance. A lot of bugs seem to make it into the product.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using Control-M for about 21 years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's a highly stable product. It has to be—it runs your business. It's very mature in that arena.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It's highly scalable, so as your enterprise grows it's very easy to continue adding in agents or to expand out your management platform, with little or no downtime.

We use Control-M for financial applications across the spectrum, including marketing, data analytics, data analysis, and partner management. We continue to grow and as new things come online we're adding them in.

They do a really good job in terms of how they expand the product and keep up with the times. It's very cloud-centric, but at the same time, it can also handle legacy-type stuff. Overall, they've done a very good job on that.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

What we had previously were all home-grown solutions. We switched to Control-M to get a grip on our environment, to have the single pane of glass to enable us to monitor and manage everything from one location. And the big thing that Control-M allows us to do now that we could not do previously is to orchestrate workflows across all types of disparate systems.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward. It was easy to get going, easy to install, easy to create workflows consistently. There wasn't a huge learning curve. We learned as we went, but it was pretty easy to learn the product.

Our deployment took about a month.

The integrated guides and how-to videos in the solution’s web interface, for helping get to full productivity with the solution, are very helpful. People watch them. They need to be a little more in-depth and they need more of them, but what they have is a good start.

We have about 120 people in our company who are actively using Control-M. They range from developers to operations personnel, financial analysts, marketing analysts, and data scientists. We have a team of three for day-to-day administration of Control-M but they do more than just Control-M.

What about the implementation team?

We worked with a partner to deploy Control-M. Our experience with them was very good.

What was our ROI?

We have definitely seen return on our investment in Control-M, many times over.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

It's an expensive product, there's no doubt about it. It's one of those solutions where you're paying upfront to reap the benefits down the road. You're going to spend a lot of money upfront, but the benefits you're going to get out of it are going to quickly pay for it. That's something people don't understand sometimes.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at a few others including IBM's Tivoli and Computer Associates.

The biggest difference is that Control-M is a more mature and growing product. The other ones were very stale. They just didn't seem to be keeping up with the times. Also, Control-M requires a lot less administration than the other products did, and Control-M was a lot easier to learn than the others. The others had a very high learning curve.

What other advice do I have?

Look at Control-M from a high level, not only down to the details. See how it can benefit your company. Most companies have data centers, they use cloud, they use software as a service—they use a mixture. But even if you're 100 percent cloud, Control-M can still benefit you because it is going to give you that vision that you've never had before of what is going on in the company. And it's going to present it to you in a way that business owners and business management can understand. It's also going to allow you to do some amazing things with automation around the automation API and Jobs-as-Code. So instead of having all these siloed systems, it is really going to help you get many things under that one roof.

My biggest advice to anybody looking into this product, or any product like this is, is to do your due diligence and get your training. It's very important to have some sort of education on this going into it. That training could be formal training or it could be help from a Control-M partner for your implementation. You can get the easy stuff out of the product on day one, but to get to the things that are really going to save money and make you say, "Wow," that takes some knowledge.

The biggest thing I have learned from using Control-M is that you never know what you can automate until you try.

Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
PeerSpot user
JoseQuintero1 - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior Services Manager at a tech services company with self employed
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
We gain speed and reliability because it continuously checks the CRC of the data packages
Pros and Cons
  • "We use Control-M for maintenance on our Oracle and SQL Server databases. It automates maintenance on packages, including standard procedures on the databases themselves, snapshots, checking integrity, verifying the RDBMS of the databases, etc. It ensures they aren't clogged and that they are running smoothly and that there aren't any jobs stuck, eating up the performance of the server or any of the CPU cores."
  • "The performance could be better. Control-M Enterprise Manager tends to slow the system down even on a server with a six-core processor and 32 gigabytes RAM. The console is Java-based, so maybe OpenJDK 16 or 17 would be a performance improvement."

What is our primary use case?

We use Control-M for managed file transfer in the enterprise manager automating database workflows. We're using Oracle Business Intelligence with a generic database like Microsoft SQL Server. Next year, we plan to use Control-M for AWS Natural and upgrade Control-M to Helix Control-M. We need managed file transfers between our servers in Key West and Orlando. Vast amounts of data are routinely transferred between servers for backup and snapshots. 

We will deploy it on AWS and Azure next year. We will also integrate Control-M with other solutions like Salesforce and COS, which is challenging because COS is a complicated legacy IBM OS. Some of our customers require Control-M to do managed file transfer and also COS conversions between IBM jobs. Anything that involves COS or OS/400 is complicated but doable.

How has it helped my organization?

With Managed File Transfer, we gain speed and reliability because a managed transfer continuously checks the CRC of the data packages. That's a God send for those data transfers. Though we are migrating to the cloud, we still use some physical servers for sensitive data from our customers protected with NDAs.

We use Control-M for the maintenance of our Oracle and SQL Server databases. It automates maintenance in packages, including standard procedures on the databases themselves, snapshots, checking integrity, verifying the RDBMS of the databases, etc. It ensures that they aren't clogged, that they run smoothly, and that there aren't any jobs stuck, eating up the performance of the server or any of the CPU cores.

In the past, we had some troubles, and we needed a database admin to keep an eye on it almost 24/7 using the OES. It's essential to ensure everything inside the OES runs smoothly, and there are no stuck jobs or queries eating up table spaces. An admin is still required, but most jobs are now automated. It has had a significant impact on staffing. In the past, we had a couple of DBAs exclusively assigned to Oracle that we were able to reassign to other jobs. 

We reassigned them to other tests and outsourced one to work with our customers. Once we delegated DBA tasks to Control-M for our Oracle databases, we could reassign that DBA as a resource to our client in Puerto Rico. He became a source of income for the company. Also, with time saved by automating all the critical internal business processes, we could dedicate more time and resources to other projects that require human attention. We could devote more resources to projects that advance the company's strategic vision instead of monitoring an Oracle RDBMS 24/7.

If I had to rate how critical Control-M is to our business, I would say it is an eight out of ten. I won't give it a nine because we still rely on older applications, such as Oracle databases, but an orchestrator will always get at least an eight on our book. For speed of process execution, I would say it is a nine out of ten. Previously, it was a four, and now it's a nine.

What is most valuable?

Control-M is intuitive, and BMC has tutorials for every application to help you with the basics. Once you know what you're doing, everything falls into place. The graphical interface is drag and drop. There are plenty of objects to drag and drop inside. You need to study them, but once you know how it works, it's just dragging and dropping like you are playing with a Lego set. 

You drag two actions to the workspace and connect them to establish a relationship, schedules, and subtasks inside each one of them. It seems complex initially, but it becomes intuitive the longer you use it.

You can almost reach out intuitively into every nook and cranny of the entire UI. It's user-friendly for the initiate, but you could be lost if you've never used an orchestrator or an enterprise-grade software like Control-M. However, Control-M has built-in tutorials that help you with the first steps. The tutorial isn't comprehensive, but at least you will learn the first steps, so you can advance and learn more.

What needs improvement?

The performance could be better. Control-M Enterprise Manager tends to slow the system down even on a server with a six-core processor and 32 gigabytes of RAM. The console is Java-based, so maybe OpenJDK 16 or 17 would be a performance improvement.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using Control-M for five years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is quite good. The framework lets you start with Control-M Enterprise Manager and add other products as you see fit. We added MFT, then Control-M for databases, and Oracle Business Intelligence. One of our customers added Control-M, including the agent for IBMI and another for Azure.

How are customer service and support?

I rate BMC support a solid nine out of ten. I say nine because I never give a ten to anyone. 

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Before Control-M, we had a traditional solution using an FTP server. Even with a T1 line that provided almost gigabyte speed, we still had artifacts during the transfer that corrupted the data. It caused serious problems when transferring 30 gigabytes of a necessary backup overnight that failed on gigabyte 28 because it was corrupted. Still, the mirror server rejected the mage because of corruption when we tried to restore it. 

We had to rely on traditional monitoring tools like SolarWinds and IBM solutions, which are pretty expensive. These tools only monitor, so they're typically not reactive or able to orchestrate the steps of a workflow. They don't follow up on each step inside the workflow, notify you when a step completes, or send alerts when something gets stuck and requires action.

How was the initial setup?

I'm the senior services manager, and overseeing the deployment of Control-M is part of my job. I did not install it, but I supervised the team. It was straightforward because we all got our BMC certification before the deployment. Our team included me and two technicians. We also had a DBA around to integrate the database.

What about the implementation team?

We did everything ourselves with some occasional help from BMC support. We emailed them a couple of times to check something, but so far, everything has gone smoothly. 

What was our ROI?

We recovered our initial investment in six months and were ready to commit more, so we could recover more. We saw an ROI with Control-M in the first two years because we could take a DBA off monitoring databases and loan them out to another company while saving time by speeding up these processes. 

Control-M gives us a lot of flexibility to automate our time-sensitive and data-critical processes. This is essential for enterprises, but Control-M isn't for everyone. Small and medium-sized businesses can use Control-M, but its power can only be leveraged by large enterprises because of the complexity of their business processes and the sheer size of data they handle. I think enterprise companies are the only ones that see an effective ROI from purchasing a tool like BMC Control-M for automating their business processes.

Small companies that purchase Control-M often cancel the contract after six months because it's too expensive, and they can get the job done using traditional methods. That's okay. It's about the business processes' complexity, depth, and maturity. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The price is right because of the licensing schema, which is based on nodes and processes. You purchase what you use, no more and no less, and you can grow with time. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

There are few options like Control-M in the market, and the closest competitors are far more expensive.

What other advice do I have?

I rate Control-M a nine out of ten. Control-M is flexible. You can use it in Azure, and they have a generic option for the cloud. You can deploy it in your own private cloud or on other cloud solutions like Kubernetes. You can use Control-M for big data applications like IBM InfoSphere. There's a Control-M solution for almost any situation.

There is so much to learn on the backend of the business processes. Typically when you see a business process, you only see a workflow, like a flow chart, arrows, boxes, etc. However, there's a whole new world under the hood. It's crucial to dig deeper and learn how to improve the processes. It's like you become the mechanic of your own car. The more you understand the engine, the more you can tweak it to get more speed, gas mileage, performance, strength, horsepower, etc. Control-M almost compels you to learn about that.

It's user-friendly, but you need some training. We have a certification from BMC. You need some prior training specifically in Control-M Enterprise Manager to know what you're doing because it's delicate. There are so many ways to customize job creation, automation, monitoring, etc. that you need at least a crash course on creating a job, monitoring, setting up alarms, and building workflows. 

It should take you no more than a week to get the hang of it, and there's BMC University, where you can get free training to use Control-M. Once you know the basics, Control-M practically handles itself. It's intuitive once you figure it out. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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Daniel Uchman - PeerSpot reviewer
Operations Support Analyst at a retailer with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
Speeds up ticket resolution for opening and assigning a ticket
Pros and Cons
  • "Control-M provides us with a unified view, where we can easily define, orchestrate, and monitor all our application workflows and data pipelines. It also provides the ability to filter. So, if I don't want to see everything, I can also narrow it down or open ViewPoint. This is very important since we have thousands of jobs to monitor. If we did not have this ability, it would be very difficult to see what is going on."
  • "Control-M reporting is a bit of a pain point right now. Control-M doesn't have robust reporting. I would like to see better reporting options. I would like to be able to pull charts or statistics that look nicer. Right now, we can pull some data, but it is kind of choppy. It would be nicer to have enterprise-level reporting that you can present to managers."

What is our primary use case?

It provides enterprise scheduling for a lot of things, e.g., supply chain, payroll, reporting, sales and marketing, and web services, which is our online store and ordering.

We are currently running jobs on Control-M for databases, web apps, proprietary applications, Workday, Oracle, WebSphere, Kafka, and Informatica stuff on Unix and Linux. It is flexible. I haven't had any problems with compatibility.

It used to be on-prem, but now it is in a different data center in a different city. So, it is a VM.

How has it helped my organization?

We use the GUI, but there is a web interface that some users are using on the business side. Those users can easily check on their job flows on the web interface, so they can see whether their job has completed or it is waiting for something. It can check the status and  history of what happened, for example, the previous day.

What is most valuable?

The scheduling is quite easy to use and pretty robust.

Control-M provides us with a unified view, where we can easily define, orchestrate, and monitor all our application workflows and data pipelines. It also provides the ability to filter. So, if I don't want to see everything, I can also narrow it down or open ViewPoint. This is very important since we have thousands of jobs to monitor. If we did not have this ability, it would be very difficult to see what is going on.

It is easy to use, and you can set things up very quickly. We can copy jobs, making copies of the existing configurations and setup. 

What needs improvement?

Control-M reporting is a bit of a pain point right now. Control-M doesn't have robust reporting. I would like to see better reporting options. I would like to be able to pull charts or statistics that look nicer. Right now, we can pull some data, but it is kind of choppy. It would be nicer to have enterprise-level reporting that you can present to managers.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Control-M for at least 12 years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I haven't seen any significant issues with Control-M in several years, e.g., we haven't had to call support. So, it has been very stable.

It runs all the time. We are running thousands of jobs with little issue, especially when I compare it to some of the other systems that we use for other things. It has been very stable.

One to two people are needed for day-to-day administration. I usually do it myself.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I haven't seen any problems with scalability in terms of performance or stability. 

There are at least 50 people using Control-M. Some of them would be architects, senior programmer analysts, database administrators, Unix administrators, software engineers, and team leads.

How are customer service and technical support?

I had an issue one time at my previous company. There was some issue with the database. We worked with Level 2 support to fix it. Other than that, there is not too much to talk about really in terms of problems. 

The integrated guides and how-to videos are very good in the solution’s web interface for reducing the time to full productivity with Control-M. BMC puts out a lot of webinars and videos on their YouTube channel. Sometimes I do use those. I go in and watch the video or webinar to see what is new or how to do things, which is very valuable.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We migrated from CA Unicenter, which was out of service and quite clunky. That system didn't have a graphical user interface; it was command line-based. It had a console, so it was very difficult to see what was going on. It was also difficult to troubleshoot. It took a long time to find information or set things up. Therefore, management decided to move to Control-M, especially since I had experience with it. It has been much easier to use and work with than CA Unicenter.

CA didn't have File Watchers. It had another way of achieving that outcome, but it was very cumbersome and not always reliable. It was also difficult to troubleshoot. 

There is a lot of logic in Control-M that you can do. For example, after a job completes, there are actions you can do. There are actions before the job completes or before it starts. There are actions you can do afterwards. There was some logic that you can add to the job, and we just didn't have it with CA.

The calendars are also a lot easier to work with using Control-M. The CA calendars were just terrible. In Control-M, we have a lot less calendars, about 20 calendars, compared to 80 or 100 in CA.

It is faster to implement things like new jobs or projects with Control-M. Whereas, in the past, certain things would be executed manually, like scripts and workflows. It is very easy to use. I can set up jobs and workflows quickly, which helps developers to test.

How was the initial setup?

It is very easy to set up a PoC. If someone just wants to do a quick test, it is very easy to do. Assuming that everything is in place, it is quite easy to test or set up cyclic jobs.

We did the setup twice. The first time was a migration from another system, which was not BMC. That took three months, which was still pretty fast, and it was very successful. The second time was an upgrade to version 19, and that took about two months, and it was also quite successful. From my perspective, the solution was very good as far as upgrades go. We didn't have any major issues, before or after the upgrade.

What about the implementation team?

We had a vendor help us out, but overall it was very smooth and a success. We used Control-M’s Conversion Tool when migrating from CA Unicenter to Control-M and the vendor helped us. Using the Conversion Tool was very important because it speeded up the process. It took all the information from one system and transferred it over, which saved us a lot of time. So, we spent more time on the verification. We spent less time on the setup and spent more time just verifying the setup to make sure everything was correct. It was a time saver for us.

My experience with BMC during our initial deployments and upgrades was very good. I got quick responses with good information. The people that I dealt with were knowledgeable and helped to resolve the problems. So, my experience was very positive. I would rate them as 10 out of 10. I never had any issues.

What was our ROI?

Control-M has helped us achieve three times faster issue resolution. We have it integrated with ServiceNow, so it tickets automatically. Whereas, in the past, we used to do it manually. We had operators opening tickets, so it speeds up ticket resolution for opening and assigning a ticket. Also, Control-M captures some errors. Sometimes, this helps to troubleshoot any problems. You can set up alerts for jobs that run too long, etc. So, it has a lot of features that we use.

Control-M helped us double or triple our Service Level Operations performance.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

CA sent us a proposal and IBM also sent one for Tivoli Workload Scheduler. We saw their presentations and packages, then did some research. We thought Control-M was the best solution based on experience and feedback from others. I had experience on Control-M already. I had been working on it for several years and had a positive experience. The other thing was just ease of use. Tivoli and Unicenter just do not seem as polished. They didn't look as easy to use, especially Tivoli. I think we heard that Tivoli was very clunky and not easy to use.

It was mostly my experience with it. Control-M was easy to use, very stable with no issues, and easy to configure and maintain. Whereas, CA was not as easy to use nor polished. CA also always keeps on buying other companies and incorporating things, so the experience is not as smooth. With Tivoli, we just heard that it was terrible to use and lacked a good interface. We had another Tivoli product from IBM for backups, and it was just terrible.

What other advice do I have?

Give Control-M a chance. If somebody is considering the solution, they should install a demo on their system and use it. It is very easy to use. It has a lot of options and features. BMC is pretty good when it comes to upgrades and implementing new features, so there is always stuff coming in. There are a lot of new options that we haven't even tried.

Of course, you should compare all your options, but Control-M is a good choice. It is probably the best.

In the future, we will probably use Control-M as part of our DevOps automation toolchains and leverage its “as-code” interfaces for developers.

I would rate it as nine out of 10. The reporting is something I would like to see improved. Other than that, there is not much I dislike about it. I work with it every day. I have been working with it for the last dozen years or so. It is an excellent product. It just needs more reporting.

Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
PeerSpot user
IT - VP at a financial services firm with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
We have a better picture of our auditability
Pros and Cons
  • "We have a better picture of our auditability. When someone comes to us, and asks for sources, "How did the deltas occur?" We can provide answers quickly, or at least quicker than what we used to. We are actually sure of the information that we provide, where before it was like, "Hmm, I think it comes from over there. Let me double check, but it gets really convoluted over here and I think that is where it comes from." Now, if it is within the Control-M environment, it has a straightforward answer that we can provide with confidence."
  • "The community and the networking that goes on within that community need improvement. We want to be able to reach out to an SME, and say, "Hey, we are doing it this way. Does that make sense?" Ideally, they come back. and say, "Yes, it does make sense to do it that way. However, if you want to do it this way, then it is a little more efficient." We understand that one solution framework doesn't fit everybody. Depending on the breadth of the data and how broad it is, you may have different models for one over the other."

What is our primary use case?

It is controlling our workflows, ingesting data, and then putting it up into our database platforms. In turn, those are consumed by our internal clients.

We do integrate Control-M Python Client and cloud data service integrations with some of our cloud providers. We have pipelines going out to the public cloud and some pipelines that are internal.

We have public and private cloud channels as well as on-prem. The expectation for most large financial institutions is that we will get 99.9% to the public cloud eventually. We want everything to be in OpEx as opposed to CapEx. We don't want data centers. We just want access to our data and to be able to turn it into information, which in turn, turns it into actionable items. Ideally, we would love to not support any on-prem or hybrid solutions, having everything be public.

How has it helped my organization?

Control-M has improved our visibility and streamlining. We have better clarity into data flows. We can resolve issues faster by not trying to reverse engineer what pipeline the infraction may have come through. We are not completely there yet, but we have better clarity and visibility. 

We have a better picture of our auditability. When someone comes to us, and asks for sources, "How did the deltas occur?" We can provide answers quickly, or at least quicker than what we used to. We are actually sure of the information that we provide, where before it was like, "Hmm, I think it comes from over there. Let me double check, but it gets really convoluted over here and I think that is where it comes from." Now, if it is within the Control-M environment, it has a straightforward answer that we can provide with confidence.

The speed of our audit preparation process is faster. When questions come in about flow, data, or sources, we don't have to try to reverse engineer anything anymore. We are able to go straight to Control-M and find out what the flow is or what happened. The visibility is there. We see the endpoint on this, such as, "What is the reverse flow on it? Where did it come in? Where did that data flow come from?" So, it is not a spaghetti mess anymore. This makes auditability easier. We are able to provide answers more quickly, which in turn, makes the audit process quicker.

Control-M has improved our business service delivery speed. It is more reliable and has increased the release schedules. We are also working on testing standards, and it has shortened the window of getting things to us. It has shortened the window, not to market, but basically getting them live. 

Control-M is critical to our business. If the support ends, we are at risk in some of our critical flows. We have redundancy around it that has been purposely built. We do that with all of our solutions. That way, we are not tied into one specific vendor, then if something happens tomorrow, we don't have a fire drill. We have things in place, but to a certain extent, there is heavy reliance on this solution.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the Self Service tool. They have metrics in place almost all across the pipeline, which is really nice. 

What needs improvement?

We are not yet really a power user of it. You can take as many training classes as you need, but it is not until you are working with a subject-matter expert (SME) on it that you can find out how you can really make this tool sing. My engineers know how to work Control-M. However, if I ask them, "Oh, is this the most efficient way of doing it?" They may not be able to say, "Yes." It is doing what we want it to do. That is nice and okay, but is it the most efficient, effective way? So, we are not there yet.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using it for about four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The platform is good. We haven't had any major outages. The stability is there.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We really haven't pushed it to any of its limits. No scalability concerns have come up for what we are doing.

If you came to me, saying, "Hey, I was looking at Control-M, but it has some issues." I am going to sit there, and go, "Tell me what the issue is." Right now, we are not using the far reaches of whatever cloud providers are out there. Control-M does well with the major providers.

How are customer service and support?

The community is not as robust as some of our other tools that were replaced. The problem was the other tools that we were using didn't do everything that Control-M is now able to do, like monitoring and the entire pipeline flow.

The community and the networking that goes on within that community need improvement. We want to be able to reach out to an SME, and say, "Hey, we are doing it this way. Does that make sense?" Ideally, they come back. and say, "Yes, it does make sense to do it that way. However, if you want to do it this way, then it is a little more efficient." We understand that one solution framework doesn't fit everybody. Depending on the breadth of the data and how broad it is, you may have different models for one over the other.

I would rate the technical support as seven or eight out of 10.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We had a patchwork set of solutions in place that were getting the job done. The problem with that was we had a lot of SMEs within certain verticals. Therefore, there wasn't one overall picture. Every time we went from one step to another step, we had to start talking to another person to figure out what was going on. So, we were trying to bring everything together under one solution with Control-M.

We are able to have a better picture of our data consumption, e.g., what files or data is brought in. Previously, we would ingest data at different points. The question that would always come back to us would be, "Where did this data come from?" Then, we would always have to reverse engineer and have some documentation on it, but the documentation would be outdated. Someone would change the pipeline and forget to change the documentation. With Control-M, we can see everything in one location. To a certain extent, it is not documentation.

I am an engineer by trade. I have been doing this for over 30 years. I know that it is nice that someone puts together a document describing the environment, but as soon as that document is saved that document is outdated.

We don't throw another tool into the toolbox just because it is a nice pretty tool. We try to figure out what the benefits are. Ideally, in our world, we try to reduce the number of tools because I don't need 50 different screwdrivers in my tool kit. I make sure that I have a flathead and a Phillips, but I don't need 50 screwdrivers. Here, we brought in this solution and it replaced some existing solutions. Now, my engineers don't need to know X number of products. They only need to know half of X number of products.

What about the implementation team?

The tool was vetted by another group before making it available to the organization and putting it into our toolbox. Then, when it was available, we looked to leverage it.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

One of the restrictions that we had was with some of the licensing, and not having any insight on the financials part of the product. I don't know what the licensing on the product is, but we don't have an unlimited enterprise license. So, there might be a limitation on either the cost of the licensing or the number of seats.

What other advice do I have?

There is always a learning curve any time you are using a new product. Our engineers who are using Control-M are kind of happy with it. There really are no negatives on its learning curve. I am always weary with new products since it is another thing that someone needs to learn, but now there are other products that we don't use because of Control-M. What I would not be open to is bringing in another product, where we need our engineers to know how to work it and make it efficient as well as support other products already in our environment. So, I like that we can get rid of three or four products and replace them with a single product. As long as the learning curve is not too steep, that is an advantage to me.

We are looking into using Control-M to deliver analytics for complex data. So, the solution is doing either machine learning or complex analytics on top of the data flow. While we do some analytics, it is not to the extent that we really want to.

I would rate this solution as a high seven or low eight (out of 10).

Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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Updated: October 2022
Buyer's Guide
Download our free Control-M Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.