Why Consider Appian Alternatives For Large Companies?

Appian is a low-code application development platform that enables enterprises to build workflow and process automation applications through an intuitive visual interface.

While Appian has its strengths, it also has some key limitations that may make it less suitable for large companies with complex processes and extensive automation needs.

Appian‘s Limitations for Large Enterprises

Let‘s examine some of Appian‘s limitations in more detail:

  • Lack of advanced AI/ML capabilities – Appian offers basic AI capabilities like sentiment analysis but lacks more advanced machine learning and predictive analytics features required for large-scale automation.

  • Scalability concerns – Appian‘s process applications face challenges when dealing with large data volumes, complex processes, and higher throughput needs of large enterprises. According to user reviews, Appian‘s rules engine can‘t handle too many rules or decisions at once.

  • No free trial – Unlike leading competitors, Appian does not offer a free trial, making it hard for large enterprises to properly evaluate its suitability for their needs before making a substantial investment.

  • Steep learning curve – Although low-code, Appian still has a steep learning curve for business users to master its interface and build complex, enterprise-grade applications.

  • Lack of broad third-party integrations – Appian lacks library of pre-built connectors that make it easy to integrate with diverse enterprise systems. Integrations require development effort.

Due to these limitations, many large companies find it better to consider more scalable and enterprise-ready automation platforms alternative to Appian.

Appian‘s Strengths

However, Appian also has some strengths that make it suitable for certain enterprise use cases:

  • Rapid application development – Appian‘s visual low-code platform enables rapid development of workflow applications and process automation.

  • Easy-to-use interface – The drag-and-drop based design canvas allows citizen developers to build applications without coding.

  • Process monitoring – In-built process monitoring and optimization capabilities.

  • Compliance – Appian applications can aid compliance with processes like GDPR, automated record keeping etc.

  • Mobile access – Allows easy mobile access to Appian applications via iOS and Android apps.

So while Appian falls shorts for large-scale intelligent automation, it can still be suitable for developing custom workflow applications and simple process automation for some large enterprises.

Next, let‘s look at some leading Appian alternatives that help large companies overcome Appian‘s limitations.

Here are the top 3 Appian alternatives suitable for large enterprises based on capabilities, scalability, and ease of use:

1. Microsoft Power Automate

Microsoft Power Automate is a top-rated RPA and workflow automation platform used by many large enterprises.

Key features:

  • 475+ pre-built connectors to enterprise apps – Office 365, Dynamics 365, SAP, Oracle, Salesforce etc.

  • RPA capabilities through desktop flows, web automation UI flows.

  • AI Builder adds ML-driven automation like forms processing, predictions, text and sentiment analytics.

  • Enterprise-grade security, compliance, access controls, encryption.

Benefits for large companies:

  • Cloud scale supports extensive automation needs of large enterprises. Over 3 million professionals use Power Automate.

  • Tight integration with Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Power BI and Azure.

  • Detailed analytics into automation usage, trends and ROI with built-in Power BI dashboards.

  • Available as part of Power Platform – can leverage Power Apps, Power BI for full low-code capabilities.

Limitations:

  • Steep learning curve compared to Appian‘s visual designer.

  • Advanced capabilities like RPA bots, custom connectors require technical skills.

  • Limited capabilities for automating complex legacy systems compared to RPA-first platforms.

2. UiPath

UiPath is a leading enterprise RPA platform with advanced process automation capabilities tailored for complex business processes.

Key features:

  • End-to-end hyperautomation platform spanning RPA, process mining, analytics, AI.

  • Attended and unattended RPA bots + reusable components.

  • Advanced computer vision and ML skills – OCR, NLP, document understanding etc.

  • Centralized management and bots orchestration with Control Room.

Benefits for large companies:

  • Highly scalable, secure platform tailored for large enterprises. Customers include Toyota, Chevron, Airbus.

  • Configurable bots, error handling, and management provide reliability at scale.

  • Granular security settings, encryption, access controls address enterprise needs.

  • AI Workforce and skills inject intelligence into automations.

Limitations:

  • Steep learning curve compared to low-code platforms like Appian.

  • Pricing starts at $5,995/month for Enterprise RPA which is higher than low-code tools.

3. Blue Prism

Blue Prism provides an enterprise-grade digital workforce for automating highly complex processes across disparate enterprise systems.

Key features:

  • Centralized visibility and controls through control room.

  • Interoperability with mainframes, legacy systems, desktop apps.

  • Reusable process building blocks.

  • AI capabilities like document classification, sentiment analysis.

Benefits for large companies:

  • Scalable architecture tested for large, mission-critical enterprise automation.

  • Access control, encryption help meet rigorous security and compliance needs.

  • Configurable Recovery Procedures provide reliability and fail-safes at scale.

  • Skills marketplace offers 160+ pre-built AI skills.

Limitations:

  • Steep learning curve, requires developer skills to fully leverage capabilities.

  • Higher pricing that scales based on number of digital workers.

How Do They Compare To Appian?

Here is a summary of how the capabilities of the 3 leading alternatives compare to Appian:

Appian Power Automate UiPath Blue Prism
Ease of Use Higher Moderate Moderate Moderate
Scalability Limited High Very High Very High
AI/ML Capabilities Basic Moderate Advanced Advanced
3rd Party Integrations Limited Broad – 475+ connectors Broad – 1000+ activities Broad – 160+ skills
Licensing Structure Opacity on pricing Low-code – $15/user/month RPA-first – $5,995/month+ RPA-first – $15,000+/year
Free Trial No Yes Yes Yes
Customer Satisfaction 3.9/5 [1] 4.4/5 [2] 4.5/5 [3] 4.1/5 [4]

While Power Automate, UiPath, and Blue Prism have enterprise-scale capabilities that Appian lacks, you need to evaluate their fit for your specific use cases and environment.

Here are some key considerations when selecting the right platform:

  • Integration requirements – Power Automate for Microsoft stack, UiPath and Blue Prism for complex legacy systems.

  • Automation breadth – Power Automate for broader business process automation vs UiPath and Blue Prism focused on RPA.

  • AI/ML capabilities – UiPath and Blue Prism lead here with enterprise-grade ML skills.

  • Business user skills – Power Automate is low/no-code, UiPath and Blue Prism need developer skills.

  • Cloud readiness – Power Automate is cloud-only, UiPath and Blue Prism support on-premises.

  • Budget – Power Automate most cost efficient, Blue Prism most expensive.

Prioritizing these criteria specific to your environment will help select the ideal alternative aligned to your enterprise automation goals.

While Appian provides an intuitive platform for workflow application development, large enterprises often need advanced and robust automation capabilities that Appian lacks.

Leading alternatives like Microsoft Power Automate, UiPath and Blue Prism handle the scale, security, compliance and AI needs of complex enterprise automation initiatives.

When evaluating Appian alternatives, focus on use case alignment, integration requirements, developer skills, and enterprise readiness to select the right platform for automating processes across your organization.

References

  1. Appian Customer Satisfaction – G2 Appian Reviews
  2. Power Automate Customer Satisfaction – G2 Power Automate Reviews
  3. UiPath Customer Satisfaction – G2 UiPath Reviews
  4. Blue Prism Customer Satisfaction – G2 Blue Prism Reviews