Gartner Magic Quadrant on Strategic Sourcing Suites – Additional Observations

Gartner issued their magic quadrant report last week on the “strategic sourcing application suites” market. That covers providers who offer sourcing, spend analytics, contract and supply base management capabilities within their offering. You can get a download of the report (or a substantial excerpt anyway) here from the BravoSolution website.

Our colleague, Jason Busch at Spend Matters US gave his initial views and comments here, and as the world’s number 1 expert in procurement technology, he is of course worth reading. We won’t duplicate his comments – but well done to BravoSolution, who come out “best”, which is well-deserved, and to Zycus and Ivalua, also in the leaders’ quadrant.

No doubt SAP Ariba were very disappointed to drop out of that leadership rating; “SAP (Ariba)'s customer satisfaction scores have dropped with respect to overall relationship and products … SAP (Ariba)'s overall customer satisfaction score is 6.81 (on a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 being the highest, and an average score of 8.33)”.  

We wanted to add a few remarks of our own to Jason’s analysis, a couple of which have particular European relevance:

  • We assume that some UK firms such as Proactis and Wax Digital are not included because they don’t hit all the qualification parameters (size and number of clients, or geographical coverage) or something like that. But for many users, that really doesn’t matter. So do apply the useful findings here to your own situation – appropriateness is a key word when you make your selection.
  • Gatewit are featured – but the report was put together before the major issues that have hit the firm recently in Portugal, where they have lost their accreditation as an approved platform for public sector buyers. See our article here.
  • Sticking with our Portuguese providers: we feel that the quadrant format is somewhat unfair to a firm like Vortal. Their product is purely public-sector-focused, so that tends to reduce their “score” here. But you could well argue that if you are a public sector customer organisation, it might be a benefit to choose a firm that is purely focused on your issues.
  • The scope of this review means that firms such as Trade Extensions are not included as their product is purely sourcing-focused. But bear in mind there are providers like that firm who have deep and market-leading expertise in different aspects of the overall capability picture.
  • As Jason points out, this is a point-in-time review and firms such as Coupa and BravoSolution have made significant improvements to their product since the analysis was carried out. And, as he says, “we believe that evaluative exercises need to be ever more tailored to an individual organization’s needs”.

Do take a look at Jason’s article too, and there are various papers available from Spend Matters that can add to your knowledge and insight in this area, for instance, this excellent report, free to download here, titled “Sourcing, Contracting and Supplier Management Landscape Definition and Overview”.

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