New Gartner BPM Quadrant is Out

Scott Francis
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Linkedin vsOnce again, you could argue that in Gartner’s quadrant there are Three Vendors that Matter-  because there are the same three vendors in the Leaders quadrant – with somewhat different positioning:  IBM, Pega, and Appian.  But there’s more to BPM than what shows up in a Gartner Report, as anyone at bpmNEXT could attest to.

Each vendor has their press release positioning their results.  Pega’s release:

“Gartner has encouraged the BPM industry. We at Pegasystems have as well with our clients in order to embrace the opportunites of digital disruption,” said Pegasystems CEO and Founder Alan Trefler. “Today’s digital enterprises need to Build for Change. They need to  engage customers across channels, intelligently automate processes, and apply predictive analytics to optimize customer interactions. We feel Gartner’s recognition of Pegasystems’ leading ability to execute on this vision for the past seven years is demonstrated by the success achieved by our many clients and partners. This Magic Quadrant placement will be welcomed by them.”

And Appian follows’ suit with theirs:

Appian, the market leader in modern business process management (BPM) and Case Management software, today announced that it has been positioned by Gartner, Inc. in the “Leaders” quadrant in the new “Magic Quadrant for Intelligent Business Process Management Suites 2014” (Gartner, Inc. “Magic Quadrant for Intelligent Business Process Management Suites 2014” by T. Jones, et al, 3/17/2014).

There doesn’t seem to be as much gnashing of teeth on this year’s quadrant (so far).  IBM was positioned furthest on the visionary axis, but why they might be rated lower than Pega or Appian on ability to execute was left as an exercise in imagination (at a guess, I’d say Gartner isn’t yet giving equal weight to being able to execute globally, rather than just in the US-centric markets).  It also may not fully take into account the partner ecosystem around each of these vendors. In particular, the IBM partner ecosystem is vibrant and plentiful by comparison to the other two vendors.  IBM has had a long time to figure out the partner ecosystem game.

Interestingly (to me) the areas where IBM’s BPM offering is considered to need work, are precisely the areas where BP3 brings core competencies to the table:

  • Between our BP Deploy cloud offering on SoftLayer, and our BP Labs managed services, we simplify the work of configuration and maintenance of IBM BPM application infrastructure.  In fact, BP3 was responsible for the very first production customer deployment of IBM BPM on SoftLayer, in 2013.
  • For customers looking to streamline their IBM BPM experience, BP3 is a VAR, and we also sell Brazos Mobile BPM – which includes just the right IBM software for a BPM solution, as well as BP3’s leading Brazos UI toolkit.
  • Our Brazos UI Toolkit streamlines the process of mobilizing processes by exposing them to an enterprise’s mobile infrastructure and development platforms, like IBM WorkLight.

There’s a ton of opportunity in the BPM market – for software vendors and consultants alike.  At BP3 we’re continuing to invest – and increase our investment – in BPM.  We know how to add values to BPM Vendors’ offerings, and we know how to take care of our customers. That’s a good recipe in the BPM market.  I’m at bpmNEXT this week, and there is more interesting action in and around BPM than ever.  Quadrants like the ones from Gartner barely scratch the surface of what is going on in a space as diverse as BPM, because they’re too focused on scoring sheets- but at the end of the day, the scores can’t tell you which product is best for your problem, any more than Consumer Reports can tell you which car to buy.

From the Gartner report itself, one can’t help but chuckle at some of the claims in the bullet points – for example, the idea that defining a record in a BPMS is a novel concept in business or enterprise software…

Honorable mention goes to WhiteStein Technologies – their goal-based BPMS was one of the more interesting technology ideas I saw at bpmNEXT last year.  Another products to keep an eye on is Bosch, because it just comes at the space from a completely different perspective.

Curious note: Gartner’s ability to pick and choose when they point out that vendors don’t have an ABPD (automated business process discovery) tool or not… Some vendors that do not, didn’t have that cited as a caution, which is a bit misleading.

Tibco and Vitria and Software AG appear to be fighting it out amongst integration-centric BPM solutions.  It sounds like Tibco has a little bit of identity crisis as they haven’t managed the migration to their new BPM product that well (based on Gartner’s notes), and they have very different use cases for BPM and for their Nimbus product portfolio.  This isn’t uncommon for vendors with multiple acquisitions or product rewrites under their belt, but it wasn’t handled as smoothly as IBM’s absorption and adoption of Lombardi’s Teamworks for example (even the Gartner report called out the transition and strength of that Lombardi purchase).  We’ve discussed this before in our blog, as I think it reflects that IBM absorbed Lombardi’s priorities, at least in the BPM/ODM space.

 

 

 

 

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