It’s Not About the Dot: A Journey to Becoming a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools
When we received notice from Gartner that Talend had been named a Leader in its Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools, I took a little time to reflect on the process that has taken place over the past couple of years and how we arrived at this milestone.
A Customer Journey
We entered the Gartner Data Integration MQ in 2009, as a Visionary, and with our open source roots, were considered a bit like the ‘new kid on the block’. Since then, I have had the pleasure of being intimately involved in our commitment to making steady progress in areas of our business that Gartner evaluates as part of our ability to execute and completeness of vision. One of the key things that I took away from this process is that it has been a transformative journey for both Talend and our customers.
If you’ve ever been involved in the submission process for a Gartner Magic Quadrant, you understand what a ‘labor of love’ it can be. It involves an extensive written submission, an online survey issued by Gartner that your customers complete directly, and a final briefing with all the analysts involved in authoring the report. It’s a major effort, but each time we’ve been through this process at Talend, I came away from it learning something new, such as how vital the anonymized customer feedback is to a vendor’s overall placement in the report.
In addition to the tremendous insights provided by the customer feedback, the authoring analysts’ general outlook on the market direction and evolution is also very helpful. Often the feedback is positive, but it can sometimes be a sobering reminder of what really matters, which is that our customers get the most out of the software and services we provide. Over the past two years, the customer feedback given during the MQ process has been extremely positive—almost glowing—but we also recognize and take to heart there’s still work to do. So Talend’s Gartner ‘dot’ is moving, but it’s not about the dot – it’s about our customers’ journey.
For Talend, the biggest change over the past couple of years has been our customer references and ability to submit customers that are using multiple Talend products in conjunction with data integration, as well as applying several different integration use-cases and deployment styles within their enterprise environments.
The Data-Driven Journey
In today’s world where literally microseconds can make a difference in millions of dollars in revenue, data is at the heart of what customers need to remain competitive. Usually, implementing new technologies ‘enterprise-wide’ is not an overnight task. Rather, it’s a longer journey—one that takes strategic vision, very clear objectives and the right mix of talent, processes, and tools in place to truly achieve success. Here at Talend, we feel that our position in this year’s Gartner Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools indicates there is a clear shift going on in the market. Customers are seeing the broad-reaching impact and value of having a unified platform in place across their organization vs. using a mixture of point solutions to meet immediate business needs (i.e. using a ‘band-aid’ approach).
In this type of environment, customers are looking for leadership and guidance from a vendor that can help them with their big data, cloud and self-service challenges—what we see as the three big market disruptors at the moment.
Our Product Journey
Years ago, Talend made a strategic decision to ‘double-down’ on Hadoop, Spark and other open source-based Big Data technologies because we felt it was the only way to keep pace with the rapidly evolving marketplace. Open source technology is backed by a massive community of bright, innovative minds. When it comes to software, the user experience and the capabilities the user needs far outweigh what any one developer or group of developers think users need. The strongest software tools from a community-driven standpoint, are those that take constant and consistent feedback and suggestions from the community, publicly track that feedback, and move to incorporate the community-driven features into the product. This “community loop” is not only inherent to the success of Open Source software, but also a key element of the way in which Talend develops our solutions. For all of these reasons, we are delighted to be recognized by Gartner as a Leader in this year’s Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools, indicating a clear ‘changing of the guard’ if you will, in the DI marketplace.
Just as our customers have been on a journey, Talend has been on an expedition of its own over the past 10 years to fundamentally change the way that people connect with their data. Using the power of the open source business model, Talend set out to disrupt and modernize the data integration market. I think it is safe to say that we’ve succeeded. Having been recognized by Gartner as a Leader in Data Integration, as well as having recently gone public on the NASDAQ exchange (NASDAQ: TLND), it’s clear that Talend is well on its way in its evolution from a “French startup” to a globally recognized brand that delivers enterprise-grade solutions.
Like I said earlier, it’s not about the dot—it’s about the journey.
 Gartner, Inc., “Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools,” Mark A. Beyer, Eric Thoo, Ehtisham Zaidi, Rick Greenwald, August 2016.