Last year’s Gartner BI and Analytics Magic Quadrant was somewhat of a surprise, after Gartner shifted the focus of the scoring from IT-led to Business-led analytics. This year the list looks consistent with majority of the big players holding the same position in the quadrant, but as they say ‘the devil is in the details’. There have been some interesting changes in vendor scores and here we present a brief summary of these. Please note this is completely based on the Vendors’ current Ability to Execute and Completeness of Vision scores as well as their historic scores.


     Microsoft is leading the way with the top score (91%) for Completeness of Vision and Trails just behind Tableau (73%) on Ability to Execute. There has been a significant improvement for Microsoft compared to last year. This is likely due to Microsoft’s success in acquiring a large user base for Power BI and the commitment shown in continuously improving Power BI features with regular updates. Microsoft is the only vendor to enjoy the leader position over the last ten years.

Microsoft Trend - 2008 to 2017


     Tableau is strong as ever with significant growth on both the axes, jumping significantly ahead of Qlik. Tableau’s strength is clearly its ease of use and intuitive visuals. Tableau’s offering in both On-premises and Cloud solutions is another big advantage. It is the clear leader in self-serve business analytics this year.

Tableau Trend - 2008 to 2017

    Qlik continues to enjoy the leader’s Quadrant but it has reasons to be cautious. The scores have gone down on both axes with Completeness of Vision going down over 10%. The In-Memory engine is still the key to Qlik’s success combined with ease of use features in the front end. QlikSense still hasn’t matured and still has limitations.

Qlik Trend - 2008 to 2017

Big gainers

    Salesforce and Sisense are two players to watch going forward. They were both new entrants last year as Niche Players and are now positioned as Visionaries. What’s more interesting is that their scores on both axes have improved significantly (over 100% increase in completeness of vision score and over 10% increase in Ability to Execute score). No other new vendors have shown such growth in scores over the last five years. It is too early to say if these vendors will enjoy success similar to Tableau or Qlik but they are definitely worth following.

The Enterprise League

    IBM (Cognos), SAP, Microstrategy and SAS share the same Visionary position as last year. All these players were leaders till 2015 before they moved down to Visionaries last year due to the change in Gartner’ strategy. IBM and SAP show some positive growth. IBM is banking big on Watson Analytics and SAP on HANA and Lumira. There isn’t clear signal from the market for these products yet and it is important for both IBM and SAP to continue the momentum they have gained since last year’ downfall.

    SAS is maintaining last year’s position more or less, with around a 10% change in scores (+ve on Completeness of Vision and –ve on Ability to Engage). Microstrategy has lost over 10% on both the axes and this should be alarming for them.

The Niche Players’s league

     Alteryx is a big surprise as they are back to the place where they started in 2012. The Completeness of Vision score has gone down by over 30%. Alteryx’s quick growth last year was mainly attributed to strong self serve data management capabilities and partnerships with other vendors. It still has a lot to improve on the user interface front.

     Oracle has some relief this year as it has made its re-entry to the quadrant. Their growth over the next few years depends on how quickly they consolidate their offerings.

     Pentaho is another vendor experiencing a big downward shift. They are almost in the same position as 2012 when they first entered the quandrant. Information Builders’s position hasn’t changed much after it took a nosedive last year. Pyramid Analytics, Yellowfin and Domo haven’t moved a lot.

Source: Gartner Magic Quadrant – BI and Analytics (2008 – 2017).

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