iPaaS Comparison: Leaders vs. Challengers

August 6, 2018

Finding the right iPaaS for your company’s integration challenges can be difficult. There is a lot of supply on the market and evaluating each vendor can be difficult and time-consuming gathering all the relevant information. 

We wanted to make the shortlisting process slightly easier for you by combining most of the information into one single article.

This iPaaS comparison will help anyone that is looking for an integration platform as a strategic investment to accelerate their digital transformation.

In this blog, we will focus on two leaders, Dell Boomi and Mulesoft, and two challengers, TibcoSoft (previously ScribeSoft) and Youredi. 

Why do we compare these iPaaS vendors?

Typically, iPaaS providers simply talk about iPaaS without making a distinction between the different type of iPaaS platforms, functionalities, and use cases they can tackle. At the same time, there are integration solutions for citizen integrators, enterprises, and for those that are looking for hybrid integration solutions.

To distinct the different integration platforms, here is a short description of each. 

Citizen Integrator iPaaS

Citizen integrator is the simplest form of an integration platform. These platforms can be used in a drag and drop manner by your IT team or even by business people. They require no coding, but they offer templates, visual development, administration, and wizards. This is a great tool if your IT team doesn’t have the required integration skills, but you still need to be able to develop connections between applications and transfer information through them.

Nevertheless, a citizen integrator iPaaS is not tactical enough for large enterprises. Citizen integrator integration platforms are typically targeting departments, such as finance, HR, or marketing. For example, one could easily connect the financial administration system to SAP for automated information flow.

It is good enough if you need to connect applications, like CRM with ERP, but once you need to create more complex B2B integrations, this platform will fail you. 

Enterprise iPaaS (or Strategic iPaaS)

Enterprise iPaaS is suitable for complex very large-scale B2B integrations, but at the same time, it can also handle simple integrations, just like a citizen integrator iPaaS.

Enterprise iPaaS can be a service that your IT team learns to use to develop and deploy integrations faster (typically EiPaaS vendors offer training and support for your teams), but it can also come in the form of managed service, so you don’t have to have resources allocated for developing integrations. Note that a strategic integration platform can be used for ad hoc integrations as well. 

Hybrid Integration Platform (HIP)

Hybrid integration platforms (HIP) help enterprises to bridge the old and the new world by connecting legacy systems with cloud-based applications.

This is especially vital in the case of business-to-business integrations. Typically, B2B integrations are extremely complex. There are a large amount of parties to be connected (in some cases, we are talking about hundreds of connections) and the amount of data that needs to be transferred is constantly growing. All the stakeholders use different systems and applications with different architectures and data standards and formats, and only a state-of-the-art solution can tackle it.

A HIP is slightly more suitable for the Internet of Things integrations than an Enterprise iPaaS. It’s important to note that only a few vendors can deliver genuinely hybrid integrations

Which one to choose?

If you are a small company, you may be just fine with an iPaaS that offers citizen integrator capabilities, same if you cannot yet fully commit in a strategic iPaaS.

Strategic iPaaS pays off even for smaller companies, as they by using en EiPaaS they do not need to have internal resources for developing integrations. As integration skills are scarce, this can significantly speed up your execution and limit your costs.

Large enterprises need to choose an iPaaS that is truly a hybrid integration platform to comply with their varying needs for on-premise and cloud integrations. 

The Comparison Methodology

We have gathered the most up-to-date public information available on the companies below. We aim to reflect on who should use their solutions, what main functionalities they offer, or for example on which markets they have a strong presence.

Disclaimer: we do not present our own opinion in the descriptions of each vendor. The facts are taken from their websites and researches. 

1. Dell Boomi iPaaS

Dell Boomi is one of the best Enterprise iPaaS providers on the market. It has a strong presence in the US and it is continuously growing, while they have strong marketing and sales efforts in EMEA and APAC to develop the business. While in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant of Enterprise Integration Platform as a Service they ranked above average customer satisfaction, in this year’s report, the customer satisfaction has been affected by the fast-paced worldwide expansion.

Dell Boomi’s Atmoshphere iPaaS has been built on a common technology platform and it has several editions for different target markets and use cases. The platform is suitable for data management, master data management (MDM), B2B integrations (EDI managed service), enterprise connectivity, API management, business process integration (BPI), or web services development. Boomi’s size allows them to support the improvement of the platform with constant fast-paced R&D.

The Dell Boomi iPaaS is a versatile and powerful tool that has been proven by their large customer base (over 7000 customers at the moment). This means that for the relatively high cost you will receive reliability and quality of service packaged into a strategic integration platform. On the other hand, it’s a scalable and secure platform that offers editions for various needs. There are five editions available: Base, Professional, Pro Plus, Enterprise, and Enteprise Plus. To understand what each edition offers, view their comparison table here.

The pricing model is designed to be simple. You can start with a 30 days free trial, after which the starting monthly fee for simple integrations is $549. If you have more serious integration needs, you should get in touch with their sales team to tailor the price to your integration needs. You can learn more here about pricing options.

In the latest Magic Quadrant for Enterprise iPaaS 2018, Gartner has scored Boomi down on ease-of-use and development. Typically, developers have been grading Atmosphere for higher on ease-of-use.

Although, Boomi is present on all markets, customers from EMEA and APAC may find their US centricity less appealing.

It’s not a secret that Boomi’s Atmosphere EiPaaS s expensive compared to other options on the market, and they are not flexible during the final negotiations. The price includes standard support, premium options are available for a fee.

In one of our previous blog, we focused on comparing the Dell Boomi iPaaS with the Youredi iPaaS. If you are debating between the two products, we suggest that you also read that blog post. 

2. Mulesoft iPaaS 

Mulesoft is the most known iPaaS provider of all. Probably anyone that knows what integrations are has come across Mulesoft at some point of their career. This vendor is also most often shortlisted by companies that are looking for an iPaaS provider. Mulesoft has originally been an Enterprise Service Bus provider and they have evolved from that into an EiPaaS provider. Recently, Mulesoft has been acquired by Salesforce.

Mulesoft’s Anypoint Platform is a combination of Enterprise iPaaS, API management, and Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) technologies according to Gartner. Mulesoft has defined it as an integration platform for SOA, SaaS, and APIs to connect applications, data, and devices, both on-premises and in the cloud with an API-led approach. The platform is suitable for application integration, data integration, API management, B2B/EDI integration, or IoT connectivity. The Anypoint Platform comes with Analytics, API designer/API manager, Connectors, Exchange, Flow designer, Monitoring, and more.

While Gartner commended Mulesoft on having a strong roadmap for Artificial Intelligence (AI), they also mentioned that there was a slower increase in new customers compared to previous years, probably because Mulesoft has been focusing on bigger strategic deals. At the same time, the number of developers using Mulesoft tools has increased.

Gartner pointed out that Mulesoft heavily focuses on API-led connectivity which is not the best for those that are looking for an EiPaaS and need complex integrations. 

3. TibcoSoft iPaaS

Previously ScribeSoft, now TibcoSoft (acquired by Tibco, a global leader in integration solutions), is a multitenant Enterprise Integration Platform as a Service provider offering different licensing models. Currently, 12000 customers and 1000 partners use their solutions.

While it is an EiPaaS, it is also a suitable integration platform for ad hoc integrators. It provides a good user interface with straightforward methods for developing, testing, and managing integration flows. Developers have also rated the platform high. It offers excellent self-guided learning aids and developer tools and forum.

Gartner mentions that although it’s a great tool, it lacks certain capabilities that can be important for an Enterprise Integration Platform as a Service, such as support for business-to-business/EDI integrations. Although, while it is possible to publish APIs through Open Services Access/Swagger, the TibcoSoft platform does not support API management, while the other vendors on this list do.

Additionally, TibcoSoft has also been rated high for customer experience. The company has a good presence in North America, EMEA, and plans to expand to Australia. The Tibco acquisition may speed up the expansion and the R&D of new features. 

4. Youredi iPaaS

Youredi’s iPaaS is a powerful tool for enterprises iPaaS that can handle challenging, complex business-to-business integration scenarios. It is ideal also for those that are looking for an utterly hybrid integration platform.

Youredi has a strong presence in North-America and EMEA, as well as some presence in the APAC region. While Youredi has been focusing on closing larger accounts, also many small and midsize companies use Youredi to free themselves from the burden of creating integrations in-house.

While the other companies on the list are developed so that your IT teams can take the lead to develop and deploy the integration solutions, Youredi offers a fully managed service to deliver large scale integration solutions to support your integration strategy.

Youredi’s EiPaaS is the perfect tool for complex integration scenarios. It can efficiently deal with a large number of trading partners that are using very different technologies (both on-premise and cloud-based ones), and they are transferring a vast amount of data.

While Youredi has a lot smaller team than the other vendors on this list, it can develop integrations very fast due to the versatility of the integration platform.

In the case of small vendors, many enterprises would be fearful. They would be questioning their ability to execute the projects.

Nevertheless, a pilot can quickly prove that a small vendor may be just as capable as a well-known brand.

In the end, the main difference is in the price tag. On the long-term, one could save anywhere between 50-80% of the integration costs just by choosing a challenger instead of a market leader. 

Conclusion 

It is never easy to find the right product when there is a lot of supply on the market.

You have probably researched all the websites of different vendors, read all the iPaaS provider articles, and gone through a lot of comparisons.

How will you find the most suitable integration platform provider that can help you to execute your integration plan?

Shortlist all the vendors that could be the good choice for you, then get in touch with all of them.

Prepare for the meeting with the questions that will help you to define which vendors can deliver the solutions you need.

Keep in mind that finding the best solution provider may take a long time, so start getting in touch early enough.

If you do the right investment, you will be able to save time and money, and the best of all, you will be get ahead of your competition. 

Do you want to learn more about iPaaS? Download our iPaaS eBook: 

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