Pros and Cons of Appian — with an Appian Alternative

POST by David Chopin

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This is about the strengths and weaknesses of Appian BPM along with a viable alternative for Appian (Tallyfy). Much of it is borrowed from Gartner, with some portions edited and cleaned up.

Appian is a model-driven application development platform that enables IT and citizen developers to construct process-centric and case-centric applications, continually improve processes, support intelligent business processes and dynamically alter processes in response to digital business moments. The following analysis refers to Appian v.7.11.

Strengths of Appian BPM

  • Appian provides solid support for all six use cases evaluated for this Magic Quadrant. Appian’s differentiation comes from its social centricity, allowing rapid innovation and discovery, as well as ad hoc and improvisational collaboration between customers, workers, partners and suppliers. Appian Records provides an intuitive ad hoc data integration capability. Records is accessible from the social interface, acting as a context broker and enabling situationally adaptive behavior.
  • Appian customer references indicated a higher degree of satisfaction with the Appian platform, compared with other vendors surveyed. This finding underscores Appian’s reputation as a very business-user-friendly iBPMS. Further analysis of customer reference data shows that Appian projects are agile. Appian customer references reported a median-time-to-production implementation of less than three months, the lowest of any vendor surveyed.
  • Appian leads the BPMS and iBPMS markets in production deployments in the public cloud, and it is one of the few cloud platforms that can manage business outcomes, as well as process orchestration of hybrid processes spanning on-premises and cloud environments.

Weaknesses of Appian BPM

  • Appian uses a rule expression language that citizen developers may find challenging. Appian does offer a free, downloadable plug-in that is available to offset some of these challenges.
  • Compared with other leading iBPMS vendors, Appian offers fewer prebuilt adapters to IoT platforms.
  • Although a high-performance database provides rapid access to real-time process intelligence and facilitates active and on-demand analytics, the iBPMS does not have native CEP and analytics capabilities to drive high-volume predictive analytics where complicated pattern matching is a requirement.

Alternative to Appian BPM — Tallyfy

Problem — BPMN makes modelling far too complicated

A great alternative to Appian would be the ability to model processes simply. Just because you have some big BPMN model doesn’t make it clever or useful. In the end, people can/will still have to actually do the process, which comes down to email/spreadsheets (unless you want a 6-month IT project). It’s ridiculous to use BPMN in today’s age — where people collaborate and don’t follow flowcharts anyway.

Problem — only IT and business analysts can map processes

Tallyfy is the only tool that enables anyone to map out a process — since most people understand the simplicity of the tool in 60 seconds. The alternative to Appian BPM is not really an alternative at all — it’s an inevitable switch that business users crave.

Problem — nobody looks at process maps while they work

Tallyfy provides self-service simplicity to workflows, along with the power you need.

Consider a beautiful alternative to Appian — Tallyfy

It integrates to everything, and it works for everyone. Take a look at Tallyfy – as a viable, user-friendly alternative to Appian.

Is legacy BPM actually going to work for business users?

Tallyfy is the only process tool that anyone can understand in 60 seconds. Legacy BPM systems can take 6 months to deploy - if they work at all.

In the last 10 years - amazing changes happened to business software. "Old BPM" software is tired and broken. It never worked for business users. Here's why.

  • Users are now deciding to buy software themselves. Old BPM was bought by your IT department, who didn't generally care about user experience - as long as it was made by a large/boring company.
  • Cloud tools are now free to try by anyone, anytime. With Old BPM you had to call sales and wait for 50 questions just to look at it and finally decide it sucks.
  • People want to share workflows with clients. With Old BPM you were stuck with trying to automate internal processes only. Your clients would be very scared and run a mile from it.
  • People expect to integrate cloud tools without IT. With Old BPM you had get engineers to write code to make a simple integration. That's now become a drag-and-drop service.
  • People expect to work on phones. This means giant, clunky flowcharts in Old BPM are dead - because they don't fit on your phone's screen - and only define "the perfect process".
  • People are tired of flowcharts. Old BPM was all about the high priest telling you how a process can/will be done, and you would obey. Now - modern workers and teams are paid to collaborate.
  • People expect all the benefits of the cloud. Old BPM was never cloud-born and was never designed for the cloud. And that creates a massive bunch of missed opportunities.
  • Companies of all sizes need process management - and never had it. Since Old BPM was so expensive and complicated, only large companies could afford it. The rest of us were left out.
  • People are excited about AI - but confused about where to begin. With Old BPM you have zero chance of using AI without an army of engineers. With cloud-born systems like Tallyfy - it's childs' play to use any AI you like to run amazing automations for photos, voice, video and more.
  • The most important part is this - what does Tallyfy offer that BPMN (used by legacy BPM systems) does not? It's true - Tallyfy actually has things you need - that no BPM can offer. Read more about it here

See how to map BPMN to Tallyfy

Here's the life you don't want if you're an operations or IT leader!

Tallyfy vs. Complex, Legacy Business Process Management Suites

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Design your workflow once - without flowcharts
Launch processes and track each one separately
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