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2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for RPA: What’s new?

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A few days ago, Gartner released its 2021 Magic Quadrant for RPA. Let’s take a look at what has changed from the 2020 report.

Here is the 2021 version of Gartner Magic Quadrant for Robotic Process Automation:

And the 2020 version of Gartner Magic Quadrant for Robotic Process Automation:

LEADERS
Microsoft and Worfusion swapped their positions – the first left Visionaries to meet Leaders and the second – vice versa. WorkFusion fell only slightly in its ability to execute and is located very close to the X-axis of the graph. The provider specializes in catering to the automation needs of the banking and financial services industry and has shown superior AI/ML capabilities by augmenting its RPA technology with prepackaged ML models for specific use cases. Apart from closing the gap with the RPA leaders, Microsoft is also offering its Power Automate software at a much more compelling price than other RPA players. With its worldwide channel presence (it sells its products and services in over 180 countries), large quota-carrying sales headcount, Microsoft might become a dominant provider of RPA tools.

VISIONARIES
Except for Microsoft and Workfusion’s mutual replacement, we have here a new player – Appian. Appian’s differentiating RPA capabilities include full-stack automation features, including automation planning, prebuilt integration with a range of artificial intelligence and machine learning services, workflow orchestration, and end-to-end life cycle support for DevOps.

CHALLENGERS
The challenger’s section of this year’s report is the least crowded, only containing EdgeVerve Systems and NICE, which were both challengers last year as well. The only change here is Kofax dropped out of the 2021 Magic Quadrant for RPA at all.

NICHE PLAYERS
The Block that experienced the most significant changes for the last year, namely, we see here five new RPA vendors – Nintex, IBM, Kryon, Cyclone Robotics, and Laiye.

Nintex’s customers are from across all industries, but its RPA offering is mainly used by financial services and banking organizations.

An industry giant, IBM, has been acquiring various automation technologies, including RPA, to complement its existing automation portfolio. The vendor is also focused on investing in AI and complex orchestration of end-to-end IT and business automation.

Kryon’s placement in this year’s report could be a result of its integration of process discovery and task mining with RPA to support scaled automation programs.

Cyclone Robotics sets itself apart from the other providers named in this report through its investment in AI to deliver services like Cyclone Intelligent Robotic Interface (CIRI) and the Cyclone AI Skill Platform.

Rounding out the niche players quadrant of the graph is Laiye. Currently, Laiye has limited visibility outside of the Asia/Pacific region, but its revenue growth, investor capital, and plans to expand across the region could disrupt the rapidly growing RPA market in the future.


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