As a three tier product, NetWorker can scale to large enterprises. Quite flexible. This ranges from traditional tape backup, where storage nodes (aka media servers) offline IO movement from the backup server, either direct to tape for large servers, or to add more lan backup capacity.
As with other enterprise products, NetWorker has a lot of flexibility.
Product management continues to add both big and small features that extend functionality. For instance, they recently added an "auto-select storage node" feature, which helps automate load balancing of lan backups among storage nodes.
Data Domain integration is where most efforts have gone recently. From client-side dedup ("hash checking") to DDBoost (NetWorker's version of OST) over both LAN and FC, and virtual synthetic fulls, NetWorker is leveraging Data Domain features to reduce backup windows.
Other items to note:
--Very strong command line. Advanced scripting (backups, recoveries, and reporting) can be done via CLI. IMHO, most powerful command line of any enterprise product.
--Wide client and database support.
--Good backward compatibility, even for systems and versions that are no longer supported. For instance, NetWorker client from 2009 can be used to back up Windows 2000. While not officially supported, it works, and provides an option for outliers.
Easy and useful reporting tends to be a constant battle. While great strides have been made, both within NetWorker and by leveraging EMC's DPA product, it is still difficult to get a handle on when things run, and where backup bottlenecks are.
I find that the (shareware) NetWorker Reporting Utility (http://users.skynet.be/networker_reporter/) offers better reporting for optimization purposes than the build in reporting. The gantt charts, for instance, visualize run times quite well.
Integration with other EMC products is a double edged sword. The addition of client-side dedup for Data Domain is truly amazing, but sites that don't have a Data Domain lose out on a lot of functionality; if a site wants to back up VMware 6 to tape, they are out of luck--VMware backups require the VBR module, which requires Data Domain. (If tape is not needed, it can be backed up to other disk, but that does not support tape for offsiting purposes).
Another example is the block level backup feature: it is a great feature, solving the problem of backing up dense filesystems that standard backup agents cannot do quickly. But it requires backup to disk, and realistically backup to Data Domain.
Some of the newer modules are really difficult to troubleshoot. This is not unique to EMC--the more complexity an application has, the more complex it is to back up. And by building in a lot of functionality to the application modules, they become more and more difficult to troubleshoot.
(I'm specifically looking at NetWorker Module for Microsoft Applications and VMware Backup and Recovery)
As with most enterprise products, licensing is tricky. EMC offers traditional feature based licensing (where tracking what is used can be difficult) or capacity based licensing (where increases in protected data require purchasing additional capacity each year). NetWorker is neither worse nor better than the other products, IMHO.
Bare metal restores for Windows are good. They are essentially non-existent for other platforms.
Meeting RTO/RPO requirements.
Backups are insurance policies for many sites, and actively used for restores for other sites.