ETL Tools stands for extract, transform, and load tools. It is also called as data integration tool. These tools enable organizations to collect the data from numerous sources and collate them on a single universal location. With the help of these tools, it becomes possible to work on different types of data at the same time. These tools can also work on the migration of data between various sources and analysis tools. ETL tools play a vital role when it comes to BI and data management of the organization due to these advanced functionalities.
The ETL process comprises three steps: namely extraction, transformation, and loading of the data. In the extraction process, unstructured and structured data is extracted from numerous sources and then consolidated at a single location. This step helps in making workflow manageable and reliable. In the second step of transformation, data is cleansed, standardized, deduplicated, verified, and then sorted by improving the quality of data. The data transformation is crucial and enhances data integrity. The final step of the ETL process is data loading. In this step, the data is transformed to the new location or destination. This loading can be done fully or even incremental loading.
ETL tools offer various features that help organizations manage business intelligence. Some of the features of top ETL tools that make it a perfect choice for organizations:
The data collection should be at ease for ETL tools. This feature enables users in creating the graphical interpretation required for the integration of data to the desired destination. With this, analysts will be able to understand the actual connection between different set of data points and their flow in the process. With the data mapping feature, users can enhance the data accuracy and the integrity of data in the entire process. In latest ETL tools, this feature is automated and lets users in creating the source destination relationships quickly.
The ETL tool should be able to be integrated with the third-party connectors easily. This will make sure that the data from numerous sources can be collected in the data warehouse. Features facilitate two-way data sharing and make communication smoother. Functionalities include dates conversion, variable setting, merging, joining, normalizing, and transforming the data. These features are important and should be considered while making a choice of any ETL tool.
The best ETL tools should be able to create workflows required for arranging and connecting the data mapping and data transformations. With this feature, users can automate all these processes easily and precisely. Workflow job scheduling is a key feature as it reduces the manual work that is complicated and also ensures that the particular job is done at the required interval of time. This feature lets users in creating sequential job transformations in single as well as in multiple servers. It also supports both ETL and pushdown optimization mode required for moving data from the source to the destination database.
ETL tools help maintain consistency among the system across the organization. Maintaining this data consistency is data synchronization. This process is usually ongoing and keeps on updating from time to time by maintaining the data quality. This feature helps organizations in reducing manual errors, which in turn enhances the business process. With data synchronization, organizations can work with other departments and can share real-time data update easily.
Business Intelligence and Reporting Getting relevant and in-depth insights into the process is the sole purpose of the ETL tool. These tools come with the functionality of reporting and visualization. With these, users can get a complete view of the business and its progress from all the departments. There are also few ETL tools in the market that provide instant visibility in the process along with the root cause of clogging points and also prioritize the business process based on it. The reports created using ETL tools also help in forecasting the business, budget planning, and identifying market opportunities. These tools save a considerable amount of time of analysts required for getting all these details manually.