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Zoho Launches Qntrl to Address Growing Need for Intelligent Automation
by Daniel Newman | April 13, 2021

The News: Austin, Texas, April 13, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — AUSTIN, Texas – April 13, 2021 –  Zoho Corporation, the parent company of leading technology brands such as ManageEngine, WebNMS, and Zoho.com announced today the launch of a new business division, Qntrl (pronounced “control”). Read more about the announcement in the company’s release.

Analyst Take: As managers seek to make technology investments to increase visibility into their department’s or business’s operations, we see significant growth in the adoption of intelligent automation solutions.

Zoho’s new business unit Qntrl has been purpose built to allow orchestrators to customize workflows at scale in simpler, and more efficient manner while also addressing the continuing complexities of business and IT, which know that technology is capable of solving their challenges, but finding the right technology is not always simple. In the intelligent automation space, this remains true as more companies and competitors enter the fray.

Based upon my early observations, Zoho has a complete offering that should compete well among Pega, Automation Anywhere, UiPath and others. Notably, there are volumes of entrants and solutions expanding beyond just UI automation. Still, we are now seeing ServiceNow and Microsoft making more significant entries into this space. More competition can be seen as both an opportunity and a threat to new entrants, but I like that Zoho has such a significant ecosystem around its core business operating system, which should serve as an immediate customer base to establish.

Brief Solution Overview of Qntrl

As I mentioned above, Qntrl is designed to make the process of deploying intelligent automation simpler. Orchestrators are empowered for lock-step collaboration among key business stakeholders, which should minimize the frustrations and redundancies of process management so that teams can focus on increased productivity. As the product is still in its infancy, I want to briefly include the highlights that the company is calling out around the new solution’s capabilities:

Key Qntrl Capabilities: (Per the company Release) 

  • Centralize requests from all process stakeholders, providing unparalleled visibility into the status of each request
  • Ensure process compliance, with a focus on eliminating redundancy and mistakes
  • Enable contextual, workflow-centric collaboration across stakeholders
  • Automate repetitive, low value-added tasks
  • Take advantage of powerful workflow intelligence reports and insights that improve operational KPIs
  • Effectively design and manage processes without having to know complicated technical notations
  • Integrate with existing IT stack solutions including Zoho business software apps and third-party solutions including Slack, Microsoft Teams, Workday, and others
  • Leverage advanced data security and information access controls

Keeping it Separate: Qntrl to Operate as a Separate BU

One of the interesting decisions was to make this new solution its own business unit rather than part of the Zoho One Operating System. I see this as a wise choice to give a bigger reach to Qntrl to deliver solutions to companies using a plethora of applications and systems of record rather than just focusing on the current Zoho base. Of course, serving more applications will require greater complexity and adaptability of the Qntrl tools. Still, Zoho seems to be prepared, explicitly calling out early integrations with popular business tools such as Slack, Teams, and Workday.

Overall Impressions of Qntrl Launch: 

I see a lot of positives in this announcement. Zoho Corporation continues to scale and diversify to meet ever-changing customer needs. I believe the launch of Qntrl is an excellent example of the company’s disciplined and innovative approach.

As the market continues to become more cognizant of the impact that data, AI/ML, and automation can have on businesses, many companies still struggle to employ tools to maximize BPO and workflow automation benefits. While this is undoubtedly a competitive space, I believe Zoho recognizes the competitive nature and sees a strong entry point. The launch of Qntrl marks an ambitious move for Zoho, but an important one as the company is prioritizing the vital step for businesses to democratize workflow orchestration while employing a flexible and compatible software package that enables the removal of mundane processes while simultaneously improving enterprise efficiency.

Futurum Research provides industry research and analysis. These columns are for educational purposes only and should not be considered in any way investment advice.

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Image: Zoho
Daniel Newman