Research firm Gartner recently unveiled the results of its "Magic Quadrant for CRM Customer Service and Support Applications, 2005," and Siebel Systems is the sole vendor in the leaders quadrant. Gartner states that $600 million, or 45 percent, of Siebel's 2004 revenue comes from its CSS organization business, with its deepest functionality and integration, and its largest average-site size from a scalability perspective driving the result.
Michael Maoz, a vice president and research fellow at Gartner, says that if Siebel wants to remain ahead of the curve the company must focus on delivering more intelligence to the desktop. "Currently Siebel is good at delivering good data about the customer, but they're not good at delivering decision support for the interaction with that customer, and that's clearly something both in the business-to-business and business-to-consumer area that people are looking at."
Siebel's strongest competition, according to the report, comes from Amdocs--the only vendor to land a position in the Challengers quadrant--but only in the communications industry. In February the company announced Amdocs 6, an integrated set of CRM, billing, self-service, order management, and content-revenue management software, Amdocs Consulting Services (targeting communication service providers), and its alliance with SAS to provide CSPs with marketing automation and BI applications. But according to Maoz, Amdocs's primarily vertical focus prevents it from moving into the leaders quadrant. "They have directed almost all of their CRM efforts overall at the telecommunications industry--therefore, they would move maybe up and down between niche and challenger. But by definition their lack of industry breadth would keep them out of the leaders box."
Trailing Amdocs as Siebel's next most serious threat are custom-built solutions. "With better development tools there's really been a resurgence of interest in build-your-own--extend your own desktops with agent portals," Maoz says.
This year's visionaries quadrant has been retooled--Epiphany remains while healthcare and banking-focused Pegasystems was added, but for specific vertical industries only. PeopleSoft has shifted from the visionaries quadrant into the niche players quadrant, Maoz says, because of buyers' uncertainties: "They really need to work out their strategy and articulate their strategy to the market before we really know what more to do with PeopleSoft." Onyx Software, Oracle, and SAP again placed into the niche players quadrant, along with new additions eGain Communications, KANA, and BMC Remedy. Chordiant Software, which placed in last year's quadrant, is absent from this year's installment. "If you were to look in its niche of the retail-banking sector...it's not that they don't have a strong product, it's that it has a very narrow focus," Maoz says.
Overall, the market in 2005 is the return to a focus on growth, and for that, Maoz says, "you see the tools being evaluated with that in mind--how can they contribute to growth within our company."
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