A Wave that's Making Waves

March 01, 2012 --

I bet some vendors have lots of issues with the Forrester Wave on Enterprise ETL (The Forrester Wave: Enterprise ETL, Q1 2012, February 2012, by Forrester Research, Inc.) that was released this week. And that the analysts who wrote it took considerable heat. I am sure there were a lot of complaining, bitching, and threatening.

Why? Not because of individual positions. We all argue that we are misplaced and that we should be much higher and to the right. That’s part of the process. Some vendors are more gracious than others, some even complain publicly, and of course we try to convince the analysts that “this rating can’t be correct”.

No, the reason why this Wave is making waves, is that, for the first time, an open source player joins the leaders.

The establishment of proprietary vendors didn’t like it when Talend entered as a Visionary in Gartner’s Magic Quadrants. But visionary was kind of OK, they could still dismiss Talend as a bunch of crazy developers with a quasi-good idea for small projects but no enterprise scalability.

I haven’t always said kind things about analysts, but I have always considered them to be fair and honest. In the case of Forrester, I spent 4 years complaining that the ETL Wave was out of date (and it was).  So I was thrilled when Noel Yuhanna and Rob Karel initiated the Wave project last summer. And also excited about the transparency of the process. The Forrester Wave is probably the most transparent of all similar reports, with all ratings and weights being published and explained.

At the end of the day, once we were done arguing about ratings (and I don’t necessarily agree with all of them, but as I was saying, that’s how it works!), the calculation placed Talend in the Leader Zone.  Then, as is customary, the draft of the report was sent to the vendors, as a courtesy copy.

This is when it takes balls to be an analyst. When VPs of Marketing, CEOs and Directors of AR start telling you what you need to do. And why there is no way you can have Talend as a leader. First try to convince you, then threaten to cancel their research contracts. I am really happy Noel and Rob stood their ground, and that the Wave was published without changes. It proves that our industry analysts are doing their work.

If you want to check out the Forrester Wave for Enterprise ETL, in which Talend is positioned as a Leader (did I mention this?), you can get it here, courtesy of Talend.


This post was edited on Mar 2 to comply with Forrester's Citation Policy. The postscriptum was also removed.