[GUEST POST] Gartner Updates: Notes from the AR regional briefing in the UK

By Henrietta Lacey-Gutsell / CGI (@henriettalacey, LinkedIn)

Gartner has its ‘listening hat’ on at the UK AR Regional BriefingNew methodologies introduced by Gartner

Gartner recently opened its doors to AR professionals with a day of presentations and interactive workshops targeted at the influencer relations community. The idea was to build on the AR forums given at the Gartner Symposium conferences and spend more time on topics that we, as AR professionals, have said we wanted to know more about.

Overall, it was an excellent event with a good balance of presentations and interactive discussions. The first panel slot was rather over staged and an over-run at the start of the day left little time for what must have been one of the most useful sessions of the day by David Black on Gartner reports and methodologies (“Gartner Update: Magic Quadrant Contextualization and Critical Capabilities”). See below for a summary of the updates.

The networking lunch was a very damp affair with a few sandwiches being served in a narrow corridor which made the logistics of moving extremely difficult and more general milling almost impossible. Apparently some of this was due to the unexpectedly large turnout with 70 AR professionals in attendance, many of whom only replied the day before. That said, if you were focused you could make some new introductions and briefly catch up with friends.

Much of the crowd had left by the first afternoon session and those folks seriously missed out. What followed was an interactive workshop led by Claire Dessaux, fresh off the AR field from Oracle and ready to listen. It was a real pleasure to be able to offer suggestions and converse with peers and Gartner alike on ways to improve processes for Magic Quadrant (MQ) and Critical Capability (CC) reports. Suggestions included; offering a thank you to vendor client references – the idea of a free report passed without comment! Other requests were to better streamline invitations to participate in MQ reports, for Gartner analysts to liaise more internally before asking vendors to submit client reference requests, as well as for analysts to collaborate on planned reports so that one questionnaire can address multiple reports. Gartner has made a start on this last point and will continue to consolidate vendor questionnaires as it adds more MQ’s to its list. This means questionnaires will inevitably get longer and more complex, though Gartner stresses the aim is to make them more specific and less repetitive. I’m not sure it will save the AR team much time in the end but may make things easier logistically.

An excellent panel discussion followed with two highly experienced AR professionals (Tom Minarik, Capgemini and Sally Elliott, BT) who were able to offer some interesting insights to the more experienced AR professional. Questions included how to demonstrate the value of AR, convincing the AR sceptic, and the future of analyst events.

For those who wanted more, one on one briefings were available, which were extremely useful, especially for those with a continuous stream of questions – myself included! It was during one of these sessions that I found out you can find the Gartner analyst org chart here which tells you who all the team leads are.

All in all it was a very worthwhile day out of the office with some valuable two-way dialogues that showed Gartner was keen to hear from the AR profession and willing to take on board our comments and suggestions. It will be interesting to hear what our North American peers have to say at the next Gartner forum in Santa Clara.

Best quote of the day:

“PR is happy noise, AR is not” (Neil McMurchy, Gartner)

Interesting facts:

  • 60% of what Gartner publishes is non-branded research
  • The Magic Quadrant page receives the highest number of clicks on the Gartner website
  • Hype cycle reports receive the second highest number of page clicks
  • Click here to find the Gartner analyst org chart

Gartner reports – updates and insights:

  • Market guide reports are a light take on an MQ without rating the vendors – meaning a lot less work for the analysts and a little less work for AR professionals. These reports are mostly targeted at mature or emerging markets.
  • Marketscope reports are ending this year – they will be replaced by the market guides and magic quadrants for those markets
  • If you feature in an MQ report, be pleased, even as a niche player you’ve been ranked as one of the top 10% of suppliers to that market
  • MQ contextualization – short pieces of research given as part of the MQ report providing more detailed insights, e.g. regional variations
  • Interactive CC reports – the MQ report gives the characteristics of vendors and one element of the product. It takes into consideration vendor commitment and the future path for the vendor and product. The CC report is more about facets of the product on offer. It considers key differentiators considered by end-user clients when selecting vendor products
  • Hype Cycle reports – reports focused on technology, are undergoing a planned refresh with a revised version due for mid-2015
  • Vendor ratings – due for a refresh, again possibly in 2015

Gartner related posts from the IIAR …

7 thoughts on “[GUEST POST] Gartner Updates: Notes from the AR regional briefing in the UK”

  1. Nice post Henrietta. I was a bit taken aback by the fact Gartner doesn’t systematically sends the resulting MQ or relevant report to references they survey or call. IMHO, it’s a very casual way of dealing with one key assets that’s put at their disposal, especially considering that giving a reference to Gartner “burns” one favour that can be asked to a client…

  2. Hi Henrietta, thanks for the post. It’s interesting to get a view of what was discussed. I have a question: what does Gartner mean when it says “60% of what Gartner publishes is non-branded research”? Does that mean it doesn’t carry the Gartner brand?

  3. I guess they don’t have to but I agree that it would be a huge help in being able to offer the client something in return for their time to complete a survey or phone interview. The reaction from Gartner seemed pretty definite that this would not be happening any time soon. I wonder if Gartner would ever consider doing some kind of exec summary and allowing us to share this with clients? That way it doesn’t give away all their IP but allows a sneak preview of what’s inside and serves as a good will gesture all round.

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