Gartner Magic Quadrant for Data Integration, 2015

Jake Freivald's picture
 By | August 14, 2015
in data integration, data management, Data Quality, gartner, Magic Quadrant
August 14, 2015

Want to know how Gartner ranks the data integration vendors? Download their 2015 Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools.

The market definition is very broad, encompassing tools for

  • BI, analytics, and data warehousing,
  • sourcing data for MDM,
  • data migrations and conversions,
  • data consistency between operational applications, and
  • interenterprise data sharing, or what I would colloquially call B2B integration.

With a wide-ranging set of use cases comes a wide range of technical requirements, including

  • adapters,
  • data delivery,
  • data transformation,
  • metadata and modeling,
  • design and development environment capabilities,
  • information governance, including profiling, cleansing, and mining,
  • deployment options,
  • operations and administration,
  • architecture and integration, and
  • service enablement.

If I had to sum up these two lists in a word, it would be "flexibility". They imply real-time and batch, transaction and bulk, service-oriented and event-driven, single-source and federated, dedicated and reusable, human and machine, and much more.

Of course, Information Builders handles integration as part of its 3i strategyintegration, data integrity, and business intelligence and analytics – so we've had to deal with all of these requirements and use cases for a long time. (We have a paper about data strategy and how these three technology types fit, if you're interested.) Gartner recognizes us for our capabilities, too, placing us in the Visionaries quadrant.

One thing stuck out to me in the market overview section: Gartner makes it very clear, in big bold letters, that information governance is through "interoperation with data quality, profiling and mining capabilities with the vendor's or a third party's tools)."

I'd have to look, but I'm pretty sure that it used to be an issue when these capabilities weren't part of the vendor's own stack, which drove some vendors to OEM or acquire that technology for inclusion in their toolkits. Interoperability now seems to be enough.

I see things the other way: Data quality has become more important than ever, and you don't really want problems in something that fundamental if your favorite vendors have a spat.

(As an aside: The change in the analytics market, where more people are going off on their own to do data discovery, has highlighted data quality problems when two analysts walk into a boardroom with starkly different numbers. It's Excel Hell all over again, with prettier and more convincing graphics. Thank you, data discovery vendors, for helping to highlight this problem.)

Here are things I'm happy about personally:

The quadrant makes it clear that if you’re looking for a solution with strong capabilities across multiple types of data usage, we have an excellent solution. Gartner highlights our robust functionality in a lot of different use cases, including real-time, and unlike many other vendors, we have great solutions for using data (analytics, analytical app development, data quality, and MDM) as well as integrating it.

It also shows that we're a vendor that knows how to treat its customers. Gartner lists our customer service as a key strength – as does every analyst who writes us up – and does so on the heels of the silver medal we just won for Best In Biz 2015 Support Department of the Year – again.

So please feel free to download the quadrant with our compliments, and if you have any specific thoughts, leave a thought in the comments.