Gartner Magic Quadrant 2019 for Analytics and Business Intelligence Platforms – Our response on where is IBM positioned

You may have seen that Gartner recently released its 2019 Magic Quadrant report for analytics and business intelligence platforms. We wanted to take the opportunity to offer our viewpoint on the report and our mission in the analytics market more broadly.

In some respects, Gartner’s outlook on the market matches ours. That alignment is easy to see if we compare their recommendations from last year’s Magic Quadrant report with the groundbreaking innovations that we released last year in Cognos Analytics 11.1. Among many other improvements, we:

  • Introduced the AI Assistant, which employs machine learning, natural language generation (NLG), and advanced pattern detection to convey hidden relationships in your data through stunning visualizations, plus distilled observations in plain English
  • Introduced new visual exploration capabilities, similar to features in Watson Analytics, that make it easy and intuitive for users, even those with no expertise in business analysis, to uncover compelling insights and hard-to-find answers
  • Incorporated many other advanced analytics features that make it faster and easier to discover not only what is happening, but why
  • Made data preparation easier and faster than ever, freeing up users to spend more of their time doing actual analysis
  • Improved performance and user experience across the board
  • Streamlined our overall approach to the BI market by sunsetting Watson Analytics and infusing augmented intelligence into Cognos Analytics to make finding answers easier and faster than ever before for users throughout an organization

We’re pleased that the 2019 report recognizes some IBM strengths, including our product vision, our worldwide resources, and especially the breadth of our BI offering: “IBM Cognos Analytics 11.1 is one of the few offerings that includes enterprise reporting, governed and self-service visual exploration, and augmented analytics in a single platform.” To use Gartner’s own language, we cover all three modes of BI: Mode 1 (“formatted production-style reporting”), Mode 2 (“visual-based exploration and agility”), and Mode 3 (augmented analytics).

In fact, Cognos Analytics 11.1 represents a significant leap forward for our customers, and we’re seeing them expand its adoption to use cases beyond traditional BI. From Ziff Properties harnessing insights uncovered in version 11.1 to get a leg up on the competition in commercial real estate to Miami-Dade County using it to revamp the way inmates are processed in its corrections unit, clients are leveraging Cognos Analytics to drive their operations forward. Given the innovations in our new release and the results we’ve seen with new and existing customers, we respectfully disagree with Gartner’s viewpoint on the level of innovation and breadth of appeal of our latest release.

By infusing AI throughout the platform, expanding deployment options, and offering new ways of purchasing, we are bringing the power of advanced analytics to many more users. Beyond that, the big advances we’ve made over the past year have laid the groundwork for even more innovations on our roadmap. We continue to regularly introduce new features to take Cognos Analytics even further for our customers, a process that starts with listening closely to feedback from our customers — through advocacy programs, standard support channels, design jam sessions held during Analytics University, and our newly expanded Cognos Analytics community — and analyst firms such as Gartner. Improvements are delivered rapidly through the quarterly release cadence and additional fixes when needed. Ongoing investments and process changes, such as the integration of our support organization with our development team and a vibrant request for enhancement process, are also improving the client experience.

Other leading analyst firms recognize that your needs are changing as well. GDPR, comprehensive information security policies, a new generation of workers, and other pressing factors are driving demand for a new kind of BI platform. Several more comprehensive analyses clearly demonstrate that IBM is getting it right:

We’re proud of the results we’ve earned, we’re proud of our product, and we’re committed to keep building on the foundation we’ve established, using AI to make BI a much more effective driver for your business. Our breadth and depth of offerings makes us the most comprehensive vendor in the market — and the right partner for you.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.