Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Forrester Capture Report

Has anyone seen this new Forrester Wave report on Multi-Channel Capture? Kofax, which is absolutely the leader, top and to the right with EMC Captiva slightly behind, is making the report available if you register. There is also an AIIM Webinar scheduled for next week.

Anyhow, the report has caused some controversy in the industry. Most obviously, there are only nine vendors ranked, when seriously I think there are about 100 competing in the document capture software space - not to mention the "multi-channel" capture market, which would seem to bring even more ISVs into the mix.

I'll start off by saying that I like the term "multi-channel capture" as a moniker that identifies where the industry is headed. Automating the capture of data from paper documents, while greatly increasing efficiencies, is not enough anymore as paper use declines and new forms of electronic input emerge. I also like Forrester's stressing the analytics is going to become an increasingly important part of this market going forward. I'm not sure they utilizing the same framing of "analytics" that I would, but I think their concepts in this area are strong at least.

On the flip side, ranking only eight vendors seems like a great disservice. I mean they left out clear market leaders like Nuance and ReadSoft, while ranking their competitors like NSi, IteSoft, Brainware, and TIS. Not sure of the rhyme or reason behind the vendor choices although Forrester attempts to link it to customer demand. Some speculation is that Forrester's background is in ECM and not data capture, so maybe their choices were influenced by that. Either way, I think the number of vendors included comes up way short.

I'll have some more details in an upcoming premium issue, but as a word of warning, here's what one ISV (whose company was ranked) said to me regarding the report: "Something like this is supposed to help clear up confusion in the market for end users. This report only adds to it."


Roberto Arias said...

I have read the Forrester Capture Report, and I think that is a poor work for a company like Forrester.
I don´t doubt that Kofax can be the most complete platform (if the license cost is not a determinant factor), but I miss companies like Abbyy, Readsoft, AnyDoc, Ephesoft, ...
But that's not the worst, if you read the report, you can see the deep knowledge of all the Kofax Suite, but this knowledge is not extensible to the rest of the products.
One of the authors of the report, is a habitual collaborator in the Kofax Transform, and I think that in this case, this report is not independent.

DIReditor said...

Robert: Thanks for your feedback. Yes, Craig LeClair was a keynote at this year's Kofax event and certainly understands their products and strategies. I agree, there were a lot of holes regarding other vendors.

Anonymous said...

My first thoughts after initially reading this report were just as Roberto and Ralph described: "poor work" and "great disservice". However I listened to the webcast yesterday and I think Forrester's justification for ranking only eight vendors is now justified with their explanation. The justification was that if a vendor was only a BPM company, or only a Capture company, or only a Workflow company then they were excluded from the report. The presenter said that this was a report on "capture technology which enabled business process" (I might have the exact terminology incorrect but that's how I personally digested his comments). It's a different approach, and maybe a fresh perspective, of looking at the capture market a different way because capture for archive has some value, but capture to process has true value.

I must agree that the report was also slanted towards Kofax.

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