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Information for the 2014 Magic Quadrant for Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting in North America

By Douglas Toombs | December 18, 2013 | 0 Comments

Gartner will begin a combined data collection process for four of our magic quadrants during the first full week of January, 2014.  We will combine our data collection efforts as best we can, in order to make the process a bit easier for service providers that may be eligible for multiple magic quadrants worldwide.  The four magic quadrants scheduled for publication in 2014 include:

  • Magic Quadrant for Cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (previous edition, target publication April 2014) 
  • Magic Quadrant for Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting, North America (previous edition, target publication May 2014)
  • Magic Quadrant for Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting, Europe (previous edition – client-only link, publication date TBD)
  • Magic Quadrant for Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting, Asia-Pacific (2013 edition publishing soon)

If you believe you may be eligible for consideration in any of these Magic Quadrants, and frequently find your organization competing against the providers in a given MQ, please have a look at the previous editions linked above to see if your service offerings meet our market definitions defined in the document.  If you feel you may qualify and you were not part of our survey process during 2013, please get in touch with the appropriate analysts for each MQ – Lydia Leong for the IaaS MQ, myself (Douglas Toombs) for the North America Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting MQ, Tiny Haynes for the European Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting MQ, and Chee-Eng To for the Asia-Pacific Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting MQ.  You can email any of us at Gartner directly via the email address format of firstname.lastname -at-


Pre-qualification surveys will be delivered on or before January 6th, and will allow providers three weeks to complete the process – with all data due back to Gartner on January 24th.  Please note that reciept of a pre-qualification survey does not guarantee inclusion in any of Gartner’s magic quadrants!  As we are operating on a very compressed schedule by performing multiple magic quadrants at once, we will not be able to provide extensions for the pre-qualification survey process beyond the 24th … so please plan for an appropriate amount of time to complete the survey by the deadline, and do not hesitate to reach out to us if you have questions during they surveying cycle.  If you have previously completed a pre-qualification survey for one of our 2013 magic quadrants and did not keep a copy of your responses, please let the relevant author(s) above know, and we can provide you with a copy of your previous data. 

Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting, North America

Inclusion notices, for providers that meet Gartner’s inclusion criteria for cloud-enabled managed hosting in North America, are expected to be communicated during the first week of February (slightly after the Cloud IaaS MQ, timelines for which are detailed here:

Providers to be included in the cloud-enabled managed hosting magic quadrant for North America will have the opportunity to schedule a one-hour briefing with the analysts authoring the Magic Quadrant, between the dates of February 3rd to February 21st.  Service providers that were included in the 2013 Magic Quadrant for Managed Hosting in North America may request a briefing slot now – prior to survey completion and inclusion notices being sent out.  Please contact Michele Severance (michele -dot- severance -at- gartner -dot- com) if you were an included provider in the previous edition and would like to get your briefing scheduled early.

Optionally, providers that were included in both the previous managed hosting for North America magic quadrant, and the cloud Infrastructure as a Service magic quadrant, may request a single 90-minute briefing with the analysts if they would prefer (in lieu of two separate 60-minute briefings).  Please contact Michele Severance (michele -dot- severance -at- gartner -dot- com) if are eligible for a 90-minute briefing, and would like to schedule one.

Schedule Summary

To summarize the dates above (subject to change), please keep the following timeframes in mind for early 2014:

  • January 6-24:  Pre-qualification survey for 2014 Magic Quadrants
  • Week of February 3rd:  Inclusion notices sent to providers that will be included in the Magic Quadrant for Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting, North America
  • February 3rd-21:  Vendor briefings for providers that will be included in the Magic Quadrant for Cloud Enabled Managed Hosting, North America

Included providers will receive more detailed information about the remainder of the MQ process and timelines, once inclusion notices have been sent out.  Included providers will be asked for a number of additional supporting documents – standard contracts (SLA/MSA), customer onboarding documents and support guides, reference customers, example pricing scenarios, etc. when they receive their inclusion notice – so included providers should expect (and set aside time for) some additional data collection.


In anticipation of many of the questions that will come in about the process as it moves along – I have tried to address a few of the more common questions here:

Why has the name of the Magic Quadrant for Managed Hosting changed to “Cloud-Enabled Managed Hosting”?

These new Magic Quadrants cover the market that is created by the intersection of managed services and a cloud-enabled infrastructure platform (which might or might not be cloud IaaS).  These magic quadrants will begin to place more focus more on the service layer on top of the infrastructure, rather than the infrastructure itself.

Should my company participate?

If you are uncertain as to whether or not your company may be eligible for consideration, consider your organizations’ offerings against the following three criteria:

  1. Your organization is a service provider (not a hardware or software vendor).
  2. Your managed hosting or cloud IaaS offering largely meets the inclusion criteria in the previous iterations of these magic quadrants. You can read reprint copies at the links above – please pay close attention to the “Market Definition/Description” and “Inclusion and Exclusion Critera” sections. Please keep in mind that inclusion criteria does not stay the same from one iteration of a Magic Quadrant to the next as the market evolves over time.
  3. If you consider yourself a direct competitor to the companies detailed in last year’s Magic Quadrants, you should probably submit for consideration in this cycle.

Please note that receipt of the pre-qualification survey does not – in any way – indicate that we believe your company may qualify for inclusion. You do not need to be a Gartner client to ask to be considered for inclusion, and Gartner client status has no bearing on inclusion or evaluation. Gartner analysts will evaluate all providers that we can that are currently active in the managed hosting market, a service provider cannot ask to be excluded from the process if their service offering meets Gartner’s market definitions.

I am a PR professional representing a managed hosting or cloud IaaS provider, can I get a survey to fill out for my client?

No. Gartner has a strict process that governs all Magic Quadrant related communications, therefore we cannot work through 3rd party organizations on behalf of a service provider. Please have your primary contact at your client reach out to us – we will be happy to work directly with them.

I’m completely new to the Magic Qudadrant process – how does it all work?

Gartner has published a few official methodology documents on the process – the official Gartner Methodology document, and a  FAQ.

Wow, there is a lot of reading material for the Magic Quadrant process — do I really need to read it all?

In our opinion, yes.

Although all of us as analysts write for a living – we don’t write this much about our methodology solely for our own benefit. You will be best prepared for the process if you take advantage of all the material available to you. It is human to want to skim long emails, and even more human to skim through lengthy Word documents – but for many service providers, the Magic Quadrant is viewed as a high-stakes exercise that will consume a tremendous number of hours of your time and the time of your executives. You would do your organization a disservice if you do not read everything provided to you regarding the Magic Quadrant. You don’t have to do so instantly, but you probably want to carefully read anything sent to you within a business day or so — and to take the time to mark deadlines on your calendar, add contacts to your address book, and so forth.

My colleague Lydia has posted several helpful blog posts during previous Magic Quadrant iterations – they are a good additional read (the tips about preparing for magic quadrant briefings are particularly helpful):

I am currently a Gartner client – can my Gartner account executive help us navigate through this process?

Gartner account executives do not have any special knowledge of the Magic Quadrant process, and your Gartner client relationship (if any) has no bearing on inclusion or positioning whatsoever. While some people do like to discuss the Magic Quadrant with their account executive, please note that these must be separate conversations outside of the MQ process; do not attempt to use your Gartner account executive as a pathway to communicate with the analysts.  If you want to ask a question or raise a concern, please contact the analysts directly via the email addresses above (more on this subject available over on Lydia’s blog entry Vendors, Magic Quadrants, and client status).

What will the inclusion criteria be for this iteration of the Magic Quadrant?

Gartner does not disclose final inclusion criteria for these Magic Quadrants in advance. All providers that are being considered – including those that have requested a survey, and others that may not have – will be notified about their inclusion or non-inclusion status once the pre-qualification survey process is complete.

Ok, I completed the survey. What’s next?

First, make sure you saved a PDF copy for yourself, for next year’s process.

Once Gartner has evaluated all of the survey responses, you will receive an email notification from our coordinator as to whether or not your company will be included in this iteration of the Magic Quadrant. If your company is included, you will receive further instructions on the next steps of the process at that time.

The Gartner Blog Network provides an opportunity for Gartner analysts to test ideas and move research forward. Because the content posted by Gartner analysts on this site does not undergo our standard editorial review, all comments or opinions expressed hereunder are those of the individual contributors and do not represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management.

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