"The "Magic Quadrant" is a Classic Corporate Shakedown"  Source: Charles Kulig LinkedIn Feb 25, 2017

The value of the MQ reports lie in the detailed analysis. Every one of the vendors has serious showstoppers described in the individual vendor reviews- including the leaders.

The MQ reports are a guide and no more. Don't pay too much attention to the visual quadrants as any one of the featured companies maybe a bad fit and a niche player or visionary a good fit.

Research other analysts- look at Butler Analytics and Dresner Advisory Services Wisdom of Crowds for two. Keep an eye out for the Boulder BI Brain Trust- BBBT , and follow @Claudia_Imhoff to build up a balanced view of the different vendors.

Most of all, put more effort into planning what you want from analytics and BI.

  1. What changes do you wish to achieve as a result of better decision making?
  2. Who needs these actionable insights across the organisation?
  3. On what will they consume these insights- tables, phones, Call-Centre Wallboards?
  4. Do you need a degree of self-service BI and how to achieve that without compromising security
  5. Can we piggy-back the enterprise security and user-admin models?
  6. Can we scale up from pilots to business units to the global enterprise and will we then be able to afford the license fees?
  7. Have all people involved in deploying analytics agreed- not just line of business but central IT, Data Scientists, data architects, developers, CFO, CEO?
  8. Is our data complete, reliable, accessible, ,managed effectively?- A critical success factor
  9. See "Increase ROI- access more of your data"!!

And here is a really important question.

Will stand-alone analytics end up as BI & Analytics silos with everybody arguing as to who has the right data and right insights? 

Then answer these:-

  • Should we demand that our enterprise software or digital platform vendors have world-class analytics embedded in the apps our people use in  their day-to-day jobs? 
  • But if we do that how do we bring together insights from all our apps? The leading edge Salesforce.com and the legacy systems of record? 

It is a sad fact of life that for all the billions spent on analytics and BI the return on investment remains disappointing- see Damning analysis of Analytics

Before you start spending money get the planning right.