Alation, ASG Technologies, Informatica and Smartlogic are among the top providers of metadata management tools, according to a new Magic Quadrant study from Gartner.
What is metadata and who are the top vendors in this space?
Put simply, metadata management is about an organization’s management of all its data and information assets. More specifically, metadata describes the various facets of an information asset that can improve its usability throughout its life cycle. In its recent Magic Quadrant report, Gartner Research takes a look at 14 of the leading vendors in this space and reviews the features that customers say they most like. The report was written by Gartner analysts Guido De Simoni, Alan Dayley and Roxane Edjlali, and groups the vendors as leaders, challengers or visionaries depending on the strength of their product.
“Leaders in metadata management solutions are front-runners with an offering that supports the full range of metadata management capabilities,” the authors explain. “They exhibit a clear understanding of, and vision for, where the market is headed and are strong in matching customers’ requirements in a variety of use cases. They support both business and technical metadata scenarios, leveraging strategic partnerships to optimize the delivery of their solutions.”
“Alation has been a leading player in this market since its entry into it with data catalogs, and is known for its data cataloging capabilities,” the authors write. “It has benefited from the overall hype around data cataloging during the past two years. Alation continues to benefit from a wide set of partnerships, with leading providers in multiple markets supporting analytical use cases — including Teradata, Tableau, MicroStrategy, Hortonworks, Cloudera and Trifacta.”
“Alex Solutions shows a strong vision around managing an end-to-end marketplace for enterprise data and helping organizations to value their information assets,” the authors write. “Alex is a fast-evolving solution targeting a variety of use cases in order to support emerging requirements across different industries. Reference customers for Alex are very satisfied with the product’s functional coverage of metadata repositories, data lineage, impact analysis, and metadata management and translation.”
“Metadata management repository functionality and architecture: ASG Enterprise Data Intelligence (EDI) is a single solution with an intuitive interface,” the authors note. “EDI has broad base functionality that includes autodiscovery, catalog, lineage, reference data management and governance. Reference customers have noted that the application is fairly straightforward to install, with a reasonable time to value.”
“Collibra depicts itself as the system of record for data — supporting data governance, managing data assets and making data citizens capable of finding, understanding and trusting their data,” the authors say. “This is an innovative approach with a perceived value in the market. Collibra has created a strong brand for data governance. This year, Collibra was again considered by more than one-third of all the respondents to the customer reference survey for this Magic Quadrant.”
“DATUM’s software platform is purpose-built to discover, understand, connect with and measure data value for the enterprise,” the authors say. “DATUM has leveraged metadata management by establishing a proprietary method for combining the different metadata management disciplines associated with performance management, process definition, classic data dictionaries, policy management and business glossaries into one unified approach. This approach is designed to directly impact goals and outcomes in order to drive business value.”
“IBM’s InfoSphere Information Governance Catalog continues to be adopted as an enterprise-wide standard that is applied to a wide variety of data domains and use cases,” the authors say. “Under its Unified Governance and Integration Platform offering, IBM continues to drive innovation in data and analytics governance and stewardship (for example, new capabilities for managing data from Hadoop distributions) and ML for automatic asset classification/tagging.”
“Informatica’s mind share in this market is widespread, with the highest frequency of appearances in competitive situations,” the authors explain. “Informatica’s concentration on enabling information governance and analytics capabilities aligns with its application- and platform-agnostic offerings, which have a broad range of established and emerging information infrastructures.”
“Recognition of Oracle’s diverse portfolio for addressing data integration and other data- and application-oriented requirements continues to fuel its appeal in deployment scenarios,” the authors say. “These requirements span data quality tools, master data management solutions, enterprise service bus, analytic appliances, enterprise applications, and platforms. In particular, Oracle shows visible growth in Oracle Data Management Cloud.”
“Smartlogic has continued to make good progress in the market and has clients in a number of industries (healthcare, life sciences, media, financial services and hightech/manufacturing),” the authors say. “Moreover, it has been able to leverage its partner ecosystem for driving sales. Smartlogic’s reference customers scored Semaphore as well above average (for this Magic Quadrant) across all functionalities such as data lineage and impact analysis. As expected, Semaphore scored particularly well for its semantic frameworks capabilities.”
“Challengers are well-positioned in the light of key trends; however, they may not provide the comprehensive breadth of functionality and support of use cases of the Leaders, or may be limited to specific technical environments or application domains,” the authors say. :”In addition, their vision may be hampered by a lack of coordinated strategy across the various products in their metadata management solutions portfolio.”
Data Advantage Group
“Data Advantage Group has invested in addressing new market demands for metadata management capabilities,” the authors explain. “It has significantly raised its marketing investment and is evolving its product to meet a wider user audience and more use cases. A substantial proportion of the reference customers for the Data Advantage Group indicate that an overall low cost was a key factor in selecting MetaCenter. This has both attracted buyers and led to MetaCenter being widely perceived as offering value in its combined product functionalities and performance.”
“Infogix demonstrates a holistic vision that leads with data governance for the business user, yet also includes active metadata capabilities by allowing the management of not only the metadata, but also the data in its platform,” the authors say. “Reference customers for Infogix reported using Data3Sixty for data governance and for risk and compliance and data value. Data analysis is also present, but only with less than one-quarter of its reference customers.”
“Visionaries demonstrate a strong understanding of emerging technology and business trends, or have a position that is well-aligned with current demand; however, they are not yet perceived as competitive players beyond their traditional customer base,” the authors explain. “They may be new entrants lacking the installed base and global presence of larger vendors, but could also be large, established players in related markets that have only recently placed an emphasis on a focused offering in metadata management.”
“Adaptive has been addressing the metadata management market for more than 20 years and has developed services, industry expertise and content in areas such as financial services and technology,” the authors write. “Adaptive benefits from a number of partnerships with major service providers and its OEM relationships, which accelerate its ability to deploy. Adaptive continues to revamp its user experience to address new roles and use cases, and is rearchitecting its solution by taking advantage of graph and machine learning (ML) to ease metadata collection and semantics discovery.”
“Global IDs’ approach to metadata management is innovative,” the authors say. “It is based on machine-centric automated learning that enables automatic curation of metadata assets. This is a promising approach to dealing with the ever-growing variety and complexity of enterprise data assets. Global IDs’ metadata repository is graph-oriented and can be composed of any number of subgraphs representing things such as data elements, applications or business concepts. This approach is foundational for delivering scalable, flexible and rich metadata management capabilities.”
“SAP released the SAP Data Hub for general availability in 2017,” the authors say. “This is where SAP is investing strategically and hoping to deliver a metadata management solution for active and passive metadata that allows for flexible and agile orchestration of data. In parallel to SAP Data Hub and SAP Enterprise Architecture Designer, SAP’s strategic cloud-based enterprise architecture solution, SAP continues to enhance SAP Information Steward and PowerDesigner. The combination of these products addresses a variety of use cases and personas.”