Appian IS transformative
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Updated March 08, 2019

Appian IS transformative

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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Overall Satisfaction with Appian

Appian has been able to resolve our tickets in a timely manner. They're also providing soft support to help increase our knowledge and develop our in house Appian center of excellence. Furthermore, their online training has been helpful in getting new developer up to speed. Downside is that a few community development extensions that ideally should be out of the box functionality are not supported by Appian. If it’s a free extension, you can’t expect any support.
We use Appian in our R&D organization. We use it to build solutions for complex processes that require something more advanced to efficiently support them. These are processes that were quite difficult to solution with traditional methods. Appian allows us to address these highly complex processes. Also, there are many solution requests in our backlog that Appian can now efficiently fulfill. These would be spreadsheet or document based processes that are currently inefficient. With Appian, we can build out solutions for them to increase efficiency. Furthermore, the processes can now talk to each other so we can make gains that were simply not achievable before.
  • Appian is great for sharing information across processes. The platform is designed such that objects from one application can be simply referenced in another (if your security permits it, of course.) This makes information sharing across processes quite simple from a technical implementation perspective.
  • Development cycles on Appian are shorter as compared to traditional methods. We're able to churn out solutions at a higher velocity.
  • Building a user interface is fast and simple. It has limited widgets but meets our needs 95% of the time out of the box. Appian regularly enhances there UI capabilities.
  • Appian has drag and drop UI building, so a proficient Appian designer can build the interface in real time along side the business stakeholders.
  • Advanced functionality requires use of the Appian expression language. The more advanced the logic, the harder it is to build with the expression language. This means development expertise is more relevant if you need advanced functionality, which I imagine applies almost all the time. I would much prefer if they allowed some common language such as JavaScript out of the box.
  • Debugging has proved difficult. It’s easy for developers to get the app to or feature to a “working” state but it needs robust alpha testing.
  • Deployment can be tricky. When a solution gets big and there are many teams and dependencies, it needs a careful process to ensure things don’t break.
  • Reasuability of Appian objects is both a pro and con. Reusing objects across apps may be more trouble than its worth because of creating heavy dependencies. Experience is helpful to strike the right balance.
  • We see that complex processes could now be managed on the platform.
  • There are certainly productivity gains when we replace manual, spreadsheet based processes with Appian.
  • We expect to see great synergy once we have several processes on the platform. We expect that will come from new information sharing across processes that was simply not feasible in the past. There are new doors yet to be opened in this respect.
End user usability is very high. But, that depends on the Appian designers ability to design them in a user friendly way. Also, they should be designed similarly across apps such that users become familiar with the interface design patterns. The other thing that makes it user friendly is the designers ability to easily get any data in the platform, and dynamically display relevant info to the end user.
From the perspective of the Appian designer, I like everything about it except debugging. Experienced programmers will find the expression language unsavory once they need to program and debug complex logic using the Appian IDE. Compared to programming Java in Eclipse or C# in Visual Studio, this is lagging. I truly believe it should support a common language out of the box. Simple logic, on the other hand, goes very fast with the expression language.
I have helped in an Appian vs. Pega evaluation. They are both great platforms and I imagine will help any enterprise that leverages them properly. I felt Pega had more features and capability compared to Appian. However, we chose Appian in the end because we felt it's more flexible than Pega. In that regard, we felt we can use it for small apps, complex apps, or behind-the-scenes automated system processes. Appian apps are set up as a bucket of objects, and you use and connect them how you like. We felt we can do "this or that" with Appian. It it can meet a wide variety of uses while remaining pliable such that we can keep our apps up to date with the pace of business change. Also, we felt Appian would be a great partner, which they have been.
Appian is very well suited for complex business processes. If implementing using traditional methods is daunting, then Appian would be a good alternative. It follows that simpler business processes would be a breeze. Also, it's well suited for situations where sharing data across processes/applications is likely. There's no need to "integrate" from Appian app to Appian app, so sharing data within the platform is trivial from a technical implementation perspective. Appian may not be as well suited for dealing with very large datasets (tens of thousands of records), it seems too much data may start taxing the system.

Appian Feature Ratings

Visual Modeling
Drag-and-drop Interfaces
Platform Security
Platform User Management
Platform Scalability

Using Appian

Research and Development

Evaluating Appian and Competitors

  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Product Reputation
  • Analyst Reports
Flexibility. The platform can keep pace with business change.
If given the opportunity, I would have more thoroughly investigated the availability of experienced Appian resources across our global regions. It’s hard to find and retain Appian experience in some regions.

Using Appian

Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Technical support not required
Well integrated
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
  • Interface creation
  • Reusablility