Appian Review

We are creating workflows in an agile manner

What is our primary use case?

It is mostly for our API, BPM, workflows, web services, and enterprise integration.

How has it helped my organization?

We have been focusing on building all of our digital and mobile applications with a lot of earlier code, as the platforms were legacy. We had to write code from scratch, because it was not possible to use the existing code. For most of our digital applications, like payment systems or digital payments, the use case was for our mobile apps.

What is most valuable?

The agile manner that we require to create our workflows. This is probably the most critical part of our solution and the time it takes to start processing the solution. This is also quite fast. It is important for us to develop the solution in an agile manner.

What needs improvement?

Newer features, especially in terms scalability. It has to become more scalable than what it is today. It is not a issue today. However, going forward, due to the growth in the number of users and the workloads, it will have to be more scalable.

It needs better integration with our existing application ecosystem.

I would like more connectors for calls and integration features. Typically in enterprise banks, we have 200 to 300 plus applications. Training and documentation on how to integrate this would help.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We would like to see more reduced latency. We would like to make sure that the scale-out factor will be much more as workloads come in. The scale-out should be improved as we grapple with more workloads and users.

We feel the latency could further be reduced, but the access time for the throughput time or the general access time could be further reduced. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We do not see any issues with overall scalability right now.

How are customer service and technical support?

The tech support is quite good. Maybe it is not as good as large enterprise vendors, especially when it comes to more technical troubleshooting. Overall, the response is okay, since most problems are solved. Though, if there are major issues, then break times possibly increase. If they could focus on that, it would be helpful.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We have been using tools from IBM, Oracle, CA (formerly known as Computer Associates), so mostly these enterprise tools at the same time are very complex and not very agile. The learning curve is much more than we found with the learning curve for Appian, so it is a trade-off between the agility of using a tool versus the complexity. To a large extent, more functions can be serviced through the tools previously mentioned from a enterprise perspective. However, most of the functions that we have are requirements for our services that we run through Appian, therefore we see this coverage as okay

How was the initial setup?

It was between straightforward and complex. There were a few issues in terms of configurations, but overall, getting the system started was quite fast. There were a few configuration parameters that we had to change, for which, it took us a couple of days more than expected. The way to start this tool is quite quick, so we did not face any issues with it.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Product pricing compared to some of the earlier vendors, like IBM, CA, and Oracle, is quite well-priced. Although, we do feel that as we increase the number of users and the workload increases, we will have to spend more. 

We will have to have a dialogue or negotiate a price for future use. To start with, it is a reasonable price. As we go ahead, we will have to make sure the costs are inline with our expectations as we grow our user base and workloads.

In terms of licensing, instead of user-based, you should go more on a workload basis. It could be helpful, since we feel that we will be growing the workload part of it more than the user part of it. I think they give us a good price on workload characteristics and it would be a better option.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We already had IBM. We evaluated Oracle and CA. We found this product to be good price-wise as well as quick implementation-wise. From IBM, at that time, we evaluated WebSphere, APM Manager, and Workflow Manager. So, it was centered around their WebSphere, Lombardi product. 

What other advice do I have?

How to integrate with their application ecosystem is probably a priority. Once you get a product like this, it is important to have that integration upfront rather than later on to work on. Otherwise, you will grapple with a very complex application ecosystem for large enterprises. These features must be provided for, understood, and the expectations of the enterprise integration bus, service, or whatever you do should be well covered by the solution, so you do not face problems down the road.

Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: We make sure it is a recognized and credible name/vendor. We typically look at the top four or five vendors on independent research ratings, then we form a committee so we do not take personal decisions. We have a committee, we arrive at a consensus, then we put up our selection criteria. This revolves around the technical aspects, the credibility of the vendor, the coverage of the vendor, and the cost as well as where do we see the future roadmap of the vendor.

**Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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