Mark Smith's Analyst Perspectives

The Workforce Management Value Index Assesses Technology Vendors

Posted by Mark Smith on Feb 7, 2022 3:00:00 AM

I am happy to share insights gleaned from our latest Value Index research, an assessment of how well vendors’ offerings meet buyers’ requirements. The Ventana Research Value Index: Workforce Management 2022 is the distillation of a year of market and product research by Ventana Research. Drawing on our Benchmark Research, we apply a structured methodology built on evaluation categories that reflect the real-world criteria incorporated in a request for proposal to workforce management vendors supporting the spectrum of these requirements. Using this methodology, we evaluated vendor submissions in seven categories: five relevant to the product experience ﹘ Adaptability, Capability, Manageability, Reliability and Usability ﹘ and two related to the customer experience ﹘ Total Cost of Ownership/Return on Investment and Vendor Validation.

VR_VI_WFM_Logo (4) (1)This research-based index evaluates the full business and information technology value of workforce management software offerings. I encourage you to learn more about our Value Index and its effectiveness as a vendor selection and request for information/request for proposal tool.

This Value Index research evaluates the following vendors that offer products for workforce management as we define it: Ascentis, ADP, Blue Yonder, Ceridian, Infor, Oracle, Paychex, Paycom, SAP SuccessFactors, UKG, Workday, Workforce Software and Zebra Technologies. Five of these 13 suppliers responded positively to our requests for information and provided completed questionnaires and demonstrations to aid our analysis of workforce management products. Along with briefings and information where provided, all online material that was generally available was used for this analysis. This report includes products generally available as of October 2021.

The following vendors declined to participate or did not respond to our invitation: Paychex, Paycom, Zebra. To organizations considering products from these vendors, we recommend extra scrutiny as part of the software assessment because we did not have access to this technology for the Value Index evaluation process.

Unlike many IT analyst firms that rank vendors from an IT-only perspective or focus on a specific type of workforce management, Ventana Research has designed the Value Index to provide a balanced perspective, rooted in an understanding of business drivers and needs. This approach not only reduces cost and time, but also minimizes the risk of making a decision that is bad for the business.

Using the Value Index will enable your organization to achieve levels of efficiency and effectiveness needed to optimize workforce management.

We urge organizations to do a thorough job of evaluating workforce management offerings in this Value Index as both the results of our in-depth analysis of these vendors and as an evaluation methodology. The Value Index can be used to evaluate existing suppliers, plus provides evaluation criteria for new projects. Using it can shorten the cycle time for an RFP.

The Value Index for Workforce Management in 2022 finds UKG first on the list, followed by Workforce Software and ADP. Companies that rated in the top three of any category ﹘ including the product and customer experience dimensions ﹘ earn the designation Value Index Leader. The Value Index leaders in Product Experience are:

  • Ceridian
  • UKG
  • Oracle

Leaders in Customer Experience are:

  • SAP SuccessFactors
  • Workforce Software
  • UKG

Value Index Leaders across any of the seven categories are:

  • UKG, which has achieved this rating in three of the seven categories.
  • Oracle and SAP, in four categories.
  • Ceridian and Workday, in two categories.
  • Ascentis in one category.

The overall performance chart provides a visual representation of how vendors rate across product and customer experience. Vendors with products scoring higher in a weighted rating of the five product experience categories place farther to the right. The combination of ratings for the two customer experience categories determines their placement on the vertical axis. As a result, vendors that place closer to the upper-right are “Exemplary” and rated higher than those closer to the lower-left and identified as “Vendors of Merit.” Vendors that excelled at customer experience over product experience have an “Assurance” rating, and those excelling in product experience have an “Innovative” rating. The following classifications of the vendors are represented in the Value Index:

  • Exemplary: Ceridian, Oracle, SAP, UKG, Workforce Software and Workday.
  • Innovative: ADP.
  • Assurance: Ascentis.
  • Merit: Blue Yonder, Infor, Paychex, Paycom and Zebra Technology.

Ventana_Research_Value_Index_Workforce_Management_2021_Scatter (1)

Note that close vendor scores should not be taken to imply that the packages evaluated are functionally identical or equally well-suited for use by every organization or process. Although there is a high degree of commonality in how organizations handle workforce management, there are many idiosyncrasies and differences that can make one vendor’s offering a better fit than another.

After more than a decade of technological advances, all the products we evaluated are feature-rich, but not all the capabilities they offer are equally valuable to users. Moreover, the existence of too many capabilities may be a negative factor for an organization if it introduces unnecessary complexity. Nonetheless, an organization may decide that a larger number of options is a plus, especially if some of them match its established practices or better support a new initiative that is driving the purchase of new software.

Features, functions and vendor assessments are not the only deciding factors. For example, an organization may face budget constraints such that the TCO evaluation can tip the scale to one vendor or another. This is where the Value Index methodology and appropriate weighting can be applied to determine the best fit of vendors and products to an organization’s specific needs.

Our firm has made every effort to encompass in this Value Index the overall product and customer experience from our workforce management blueprint, which we believe reflects what a well-crafted RFP should contain. Even so, there may be additional areas that affect which vendor and products best fit an organization’s particular requirements. Therefore, while this research is complete as it stands, utilizing it in your own organizational context is critical to ensure that products deliver the highest level of support for your projects.

You can find more details on our site as well as in the Value Index Market Report.


Mark Smith

Topics: Human Capital Management, Learning Management, Talent Management, Workforce Management, Payroll Management, Total Compensation Management, employee experience

Mark Smith

Written by Mark Smith

Mark is responsible for the overall direction of Ventana Research and drives the global research agenda covering both business and technology areas. He defined the blueprint for Information Management and Performance Management as the linking together of people, processes, information and technology across organizations to drive effective results. Mark is an expert in technology for business from Performance Management, Business Intelligence, Analytics to Information Management across finance, operations and IT. Mark has held CMO, product development and research roles at companies such as SAP, META Group, Oracle and IRI Software. He has experience across major industries including banking, consumer products, food and beverage, insurance, manufacturing, pharmaceutical and retail and consumer services.