Press Release • April 4, 2023

Alation Deepens Integrations with Databricks Unity Catalog and dbt Cloud to Power Data Intelligence Across the Modern Data Stack

Provide business and analytics teams with greater visibility into and understanding of pipelines to empower more people to use trusted data

Redwood City, Calif. – April 4, 2023 – Alation Inc., the data intelligence company, today announced expanded partnerships with Databricks, the lakehouse company, and dbt Labs, the pioneer in analytics engineering, to extend knowledge, collaboration, and trust across the modern data stack. Joint customers can now easily integrate rich metadata from Databricks Unity Catalog and leverage a new connector that provides support for dbt Core and dbt Cloud in Alation. As a result, users have a better understanding of their data landscape and can view underlying data changes and transformations to power data intelligence.

In the modern data stack, data lives in a variety of source systems and formats in preparation for transformation and analysis. To find, understand, and trust data that spans multiple technologies across an organization, users need a single-pane-of-glass view of the most valuable data within their ecosystem. With these recent integrations, metadata is visible within Alation, enabling users to better understand the data being leveraged, as well as its historical use, to ensure business decisions are made on high-quality and trusted data.

“The combination of Alation plus Databricks Unity Catalog, and Alation plus dbt Cloud, brings much-needed data intelligence with critical components of the modern data stack,” said Diby Malakar, VP of product management, Alation. “Metadata offers invaluable context to data users seeking to better understand their data’s path and collaborate across the organization. We’re looking forward to growing our partnerships with Databricks and dbt Labs to help data teams stay on track, work together, and increase confidence in data-driven decisions.”

Power Self-Discovery with Databricks Unity Catalog

Alation connects to more than 100 data sources, including Databricks, dbt Labs, Snowflake, AWS, and Tableau. The expanded connector with Databricks Unity Catalog empowers joint customers to better understand data that lives in their cloud-based technology stack. Organizations that leverage Databricks, which is specifically optimized for cloud environments, process and transform massive quantities of data that span multiple workspaces and systems.

Now, with the expanded connector to Databricks Unity Catalog, joint customers can sample and profile data, and compose queries on data from the Databricks Lakehouse, directly in Alation.

  • Sampling provides a preview of a small slice of data, its structure, and how it can be used.

  • Profiling provides a high-level view on the statistics of the data, such as minimum, maximum, median, and null, enabling users to observe potential quality and fit at a glance.

  • Compose, Alation’s SQL query tool, enables users to search data sources with real-time warnings and lowers the barrier to entry with its autocomplete function that generates suggestions as users write queries.

Data engineers and data scientists will now benefit from increased self-service at scale, faster migration, and the ability to collaborate inside Alation with enhanced context around the systems being used.

“Whether you’re a data owner or user, you need to understand the context around the data being used to accelerate time to value and garner trusted insights,” said Ariel Amster, Director of Strategic Technology Partners at Databricks. “By integrating Unity Catalog with Alation, data teams can easily search across multiple sources and workplaces to power self-discovery and streamline governance. This is a critical step before leveraging any data set, to improve the accuracy of their predictive models, and we’re thrilled to further strengthen our partnership with Alation.”

Gain Visibility into Data Changes with dbt Labs

Metadata plays a key role in enabling data users to quickly search, discover, and understand their data within Alation – an especially important feature for data engineers as they prepare increasing quantities of data for analysis.

The new connector for dbt Core and dbt Cloud extracts dbt descriptions for curated data in Alation, as well as dbt lineage for data warehouses, such as Snowflake, Redshift, and PostgreSQL. As a result, business users can fully understand the changes and transformations made to underlying data. Now, users can navigate, search, curate, flag, tag, and view lineage for data assets built with dbt in one location, increasing productivity and producing higher-quality results. The integration builds upon Alation’s extensive partner network, which utilizes the Open Connector Framework (OCF), and further cements the company’s ongoing commitment to open extensibility.

Alation is a Platinum Sponsor at the Fivetran Modern Data Stack Conference, scheduled for April 4-5 in San Francisco, California. To learn more about how Alation enables the modern data stack, visit Alation’s booth (#4) to schedule a demo with the Databricks Unity Catalog and new dbt Labs connector.

Also, attend the “Look Before You Leap” session on April 4 at 2:30 p.m. presented by Mitesh Shah, vice president of market strategy at Alation, which will explore how to avoid clogged pipelines with data intelligence.

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About Alation

Alation is the leader in enterprise data intelligence solutions, enabling self-service analytics, cloud transformation, data governance, and AI-ready data. More than 550 enterprises build data culture and improve data-driven decision-making with Alation, including Cisco, Nasdaq, Pfizer, Salesforce, and Virgin Australia. Alation has been named to Inc. Magazine’s Best Workplaces list four times, is a 2022 UK’s Best Workplaces™ in tech and Best Workplaces™ for Women, and recognized as a 2022 and 2023 UK’s Best Workplaces™. For more information, visit

Alation Media Contact

Lauren Lloyd

Director of Public Relations