Gartner, an information technology research and advisory company, analyses the e-discovery market and releases an annual report entitled the “Magic Quadrant”. It places each major e-discovery software vendor in one of four squares: Leaders, Challengers, Visionaries and Niche Players.  The proximity to the top-right corner of each square indicates the ranking of each vendor (the closer the better!).

This year’s report was released on May 18th. A summary of the report can be viewed here. The full report can be purchased from Gartner.

The results are generally in line with the maturity of the industry we have seen over the past year. kCura, the makers of Relativity, and FTI, with Ringtail, are both recognized as the top leaders. Recommind and ZyLab follow on their heels. With the exception of ZyLab (which is not available locally in Canada), Wortzmans has used all of these products. Any of them are suitable for large-size e-discovery reviews.

Challengers include Symantec (Clearwell) and AccessData (Summation). Interestingly, Gartner considers Xerox (Viewpoint) and LexisNexis (Concordance and Casemap) niche players, although they are placed very near the nexus of all four squares, and could move into one of the other categories next year.

One newcomer to the field is Microsoft, which has entered the space with their purchase of Equivio. They are currently in the bottom left of the Visionaries square, but we expect them to move in the future as they integrate the Equivio technology into their Office365, Exchange and SharePoint environments.

Although a successful e-discovery project involves many aspects in addition to the software used (such as vendor support and management of the review), the Gartner report does help to navigate the ever growing e-discovery software space and assist in making decisions.