When trying to understand which of the businesses in the major technology markets are the biggest competing players, it is helpful to have a consistent way to analyze them. To figure out which of these technology providers are best for the needs of your business, it is helpful to have a wide angle view of relevant criteria evaluations. This analysis is provided well by the standards of the Gartner Magic Quadrant.

The reason the Quadrant is so widely used for analysis of technology companies is because it has a easy to read graphical interface which a standard set of criteria by which to evaluate the various aspects of each BI company. These criteria are grouped into two categories in the following manner:

Completeness of Vision

  • Market Understanding – Listening to and understanding customer needs
  • Marketing Strategy – Having a clear message throughout all marketing mediums
  • Sales Strategy – Using direct and indirect sales to reach the market
  • Offering Strategy – Development of products to meet current and future needs
  • Business Model – Valid and logical underlying setup of the business
  • Vertical Industry Strategy – Directing resources & skills to meet related market segments
  • Innovation – Defense against acquisition by using expertise to marshall resources
  • Geographic Strategy – Using partners and channels to reach outside markets

Ability to Execute

  • Product or Service – Quality of and ability to compete in the marketplace
  • Overall Viability – Financial health and practical success now and in the future
  • Sales Execution and Pricing – Ability to support pricing, negotiation and effective sales
  • Market Responsiveness/Track Record – Ability to respond to changing times
  • Marketing Execution – Quality and creativity of message delivery to the public
  • Customer Experience – How well the company manages customer relationships
  • Operations – Ability to design and adapt organizational structure to meet needs


After the analysis is complete, companies are grouped into one of four types of technology providers. This gives business executives a quick way to see the difference between a wide variety of companies in the very competitive and quickly growing technology market. Here is a list of the four types of companies that evolve from rating analysis with the Gartner Magic Quadrant:

  • Leaders – These companies score high in both the completeness of their vision and their ability to execute it. They tend to be larger and more mature businesses.
  • Visionaries – Score lower on their ability to execute, but they have a high score on the completeness of the vision. These companies tend to be smaller groups with great ideas that need structure and investment to grow.
  • Challengers – Score higher on their ability to execute, but their vision is not as complete as other companies. They may be a mature company without complete future plans for adaptation and change in the market.
  • Niche Players – These companies tend to be new to the Magic Quadrant evaluation and currently score lower in both groups of criteria. They may be able to deliver well to a small segment of the population and be successful.

When you read an analysis of a company, you will be able to see how well they are competing within their niche and in the industry overall. It would be a mistake to think you should only deal with leaders. This is because the visionaries could be just what you need for your particular direction and needs, or perhaps the niche players will have exactly the services for your market. Challengers can partner with visionaries to become leaders, and you can catch the wave.

As you can see from the depth of these criteria and the way they are grouped, the Gartner Magic Quadrant is a very thorough analysis of a company. It can help you see how well a company is executing its vision, and whether it can really deliver what it says it delivers. This will help you make a more informed decision about current and future business partners.