Siebel Tops Gartner's CRM Sales Suite Magic Quadrant
Siebel Systems continues to reign as the leader of Gartner's Magic Quadrant for CRM Sales Suite Vendors. The recent report linked Siebel's sole occupancy of the leading quadrant with its breath of functionality, large number of live references, and support for all three selling channels--direct, partner, and electronic commerce. Oracle and SAP were ranked as the leading challengers.
According to the report, Siebel continues to improve its vertical functionality with its sales configuration, particularly in the communications sector. Deployment of Siebel Analytics to sales organizations has also been observed, with many sales-management users and salespeople using the analytics to make more informed selling decisions. The report cites Siebel's expansion of order management as a central challenge for the company, and that an enabling component for this will be Siebel's Universal Application Network.
"Expectation for the market has moved," says Robert DeSisto, coauthor of the report and vice president of CRM research at Gartner. DeSisto points out that expectations are increasing for suite vendors to extend their capabilities, and that Siebel's capacity to keep up with these expectations is what has positioned it on top. "Siebel has shown the ability to handle a multiple-channel environment," he says.
As challengers, both Oracle and SAP have increased their number of live references, with Oracle more than doubling its figure. Although Oracle customers have cited improvements in customer visibility during the entire prospect-to-cash process as a potential benefit, the company still lacks many multichannel, multisales application deployments. Disconnected functionality is also an obstacle Oracle must tackle, according to the report, with few mobile clients in production and none with more than 300 users.
SAP has maintained its challenger position also because of its ability to supply adequate functionality for more of its installed base; the report suggests, however, that production must reach critical mass to prove the company's capabilities. SAP's sales configurator has continued to trail behind Oracle and Siebel in functionality, largely due to its dual configuration strategy.
"[Oracle and SAP] need to stay within their installed base, and target and deepen integrations," DeSisto says. He explains that customers would prefer to remain loyal to one vendor, rather than switching, due to particular conveniences like integrations. There are areas where, he says, these companies "need to really close those gaps and supply functionality. They don't need the most functionality, but they do need the right functionality for their customers."
The report ranked PeopleSoft, Pivotal, and Onyx as niche players, with PeopleSoft expected to slow functionality expansion during 2004, and Pivotal and Onyx expected to be pushed to particular vertical industries or midsize organizations.