BDNA review

“A unique and innovative offering. BDNA aggregates, cleanses and filters enterprise data sources into a single source of asset data, then enriches it with market intelligence to enable smart decision-making.”

BDNA

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70%
80% Customer feeback
60% Analyst opinion

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Customer satisfaction

Customer service
Value for money
Customer support
Overall satisfaction
Customer loyalty
80%
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Version reviewed: 5.x

Customer service
Value for money
Customer support
Overall satisfaction
Customer loyalty

What are the strengths of this product?

It's easy to operate (creating ne jobs etc.)
Pretty fast implementation
Connection to other sources is great

What are the weaknesses of this product?

Job process duration can take some time

What features would you add if you had the choice?

Elevator pitch

“A unique and innovative offering. BDNA aggregates, cleanses and filters enterprise data sources into a single source of asset data, then enriches it with market intelligence to enable smart decision-making.”

Strengths

  • Unique and innovative offering for identifying the truth in large enterprise networks
  • Impressive list of large corporate customers
  • Single focus on normalizing and enriching enterprise technology data
  • Well-positioned to take advantage of Internet of Things device connectivity overhead issues
  • Great potential for usage beyond the ITAM department for IT department wide decision-making

Weaknesses

  • Market positioning challenges versus traditional ITAM tools

BDNA Platform Product Portfolio

  • Technopedia – Repository of enterprise software and hardware asset information
  • Normalize – Aggregate and normalize raw asset data
  • Discover - Agentless asset discovery
  • Analyze – Analysis and data visualization on BDNA information 

Analysis – BDNA Technopedia 

BDNA offers a reference catalogue of software and hardware information to help IT Asset Managers make better decisions.

BDNA takes a feed of purchase information, installation information, subscriptions and usage and normalizes data into a consistent language. The recognition process is similar to that seen in traditional SAM tools for identifying the risk in software, but also extends to reconciling procurement and hardware information and has use cases way beyond the ITAM department.

BDNA’s value proposition is that authoritative data allows organizations to be more productive, move faster and be more efficient and secure, by clarifying exactly what they own, use and have purchased using a commonly understood and consistent language. The business is empowered to make more accurate and timely decisions.

Augmented Reality for Connected Devices 

The value of this enterprise-wide highly accurate information can range from the tactical, to the strategic, to the urgent:  

  • Strategic – How do I build an accurate picture of actual usage to support Enterprise Architecture planning?
  • Tactical – How do I build accurate information to defend a software audit?
  • Urgent – How do I find assets with a high-risk vulnerability across my entire estate?

In contrast, typical IT organizations today have good information in silos, using inconsistent naming conventions exposing themselves to risk and inefficient working practices and poor decision-making.

BDNA’s reference catalogue Technopedia includes 1.7 million products with 120 million market data points and more than 2,500 updates daily. Customers can access this intelligence via API connections with other systems or access their cleaned and clarified asset data via BDNA’s Normalize product, which aggregates data from within an organization’s estate, and processes it into a common and consistent language utilizing Technopedia.

Technopedia also includes market-enriched data that enables usage beyond ITAM. For example, BDNA also includes the reporting of NIST security vulnerabilities against specific software versions, so customers can quickly assess security risks in their environment. End-of-Life (EOL) data can also enable organizations to be more proactive with security vulnerabilities.

BDNA packages additional market context aligned to Technopedia in Content Packs. Content Packs provide functional or domain specific data to address specific use cases, such as the NIST security or EOL vulnerabilities above. 

BDNA offers the following Content Packs:

  • Lifecycle and Support: General availability, end-of-life and obsolescence dates for hardware and software products
  • InfoSec: Mappings of software products to the U.S. NIST national vulnerability database
  • Hardware Specifications: Detailed hardware data, including physical size, power consumption, heat dissipation and more
  • Windows Compatibility: Identifies software products and their compatibility for migration to target Windows platforms (e.g. Windows 10)
  • Virtualization Compatibility: Identifies software products that are certified to run in virtual environments by virtualization provider
  • DejaCode Open Source: Identifies license types of FOSS as well as subcomponents of the products
  • Pricing: MSRP prices for hardware and software products
  • Procurement: Licensing terms and metrics for hardware and software products
  • IBM PVU Licensing: Identifies PVU values for hardware platform

Normalizing Procurement Data Feeds

BDNA describes itself as a content company. Whilst helping companies identify and assess the risk of IT assets and other business assets, BDNA also normalizes procurement data. By assessing the part numbers in purchase orders, BDNA can also normalize procurement history, making it much easier to reconcile with actual usage. When algorithms are not able to recognize a purchase order, an analyst will intervene from the BDNA team to help recognize the customer information. As far as we aware, this is a unique offering in the ITAM industry and could save huge amounts of time, especially with those organizations in large complex environments with multiple procurement feeds and territories.

Execution – Signal versus Noise 

In terms of execution, BDNA refers to a four-step process for gaining value from its platform for ITAM:

  • Aggregation of multiple data sources from client environments.
  • Filter relevant versus irrelevant information, the signal from the noise of masses of IT data.

BDNA Normalize

  • Enrich with BDNA validated market information, like augmented reality for IT assets.
  • Make the final information available via API to other platforms or via reporting.

Once the nettle has been grasped by senior IT leadership, the returns can be lucrative with BDNA claiming 90 percent of its customers are said to generate positive ROI within one year, and 66 percent of those reported double return on investment within one year. We found reporting to be very flexible, easy-to-use and versatile to the many use case possibilities of BDNA data.

Online auto retailer Autotrader used BDNA to consolidate the data across various department tools into its ServiceNow platform, cutting implementation effort by 75 percent and maintenance by 90 percent. By using Technopedia to automate its ServiceNow data cleansing, population and maintenance, Autotrader eliminated manual tasks, achieving data standardization across departments and dramatically simplifying reporting.

Grasping the Connected Devices Opportunity

Gartner predicts [1] the value of the Internet of Things market to be $1.9 trillion by 2020, with Manufacturing, Healthcare Providers, Insurance and Finance leading the way in terms of vertical sectors. As more and more commercial devices are connected to corporate networks and benefit from Internet connectivity, there is a potential enormous management overhead and risk in the proliferation of devices.   

BDNA has begun the journey into the management of connected devices with the addition of medical devices, with the ability to identify healthcare devices. BDNA states it has moved into the healthcare market due to good existing traction in the medical market and due to the high-value, high-risk nature of devices often laden with private medical information.

The company has begun the transition from an enterprise IT data company to an enterprise technology asset data company to embrace devices outside the IT department.

This represents a potential huge growth area for BDNA and ITAM as a discipline. The ITSM market has grown its market potential by expanding the scope of IT service desk platforms to include back-office functions drowning in email and ripe for automation such as HR, Facilities and Finance. ITAM has a similar growth opportunity as companies and their infrastructure become increasing connected and digitized. Whilst Internet of Things device predictions vary wildly, there is no doubting the bow wave of management overhead on the horizon associated with smart devices communicating, storing and transmitting data over networks.

A large section of the Internet [2] was brought down in late 2016 due to a DDoS attack generated by a botnet of Internet-connected cameras. BDNA is well-placed to take advantage of this opportunity and help customers mitigate the risk of connected devices.   

The BDNA vision is to augment and classify data associated with all connected devices. BDNA has a quality framework for its data which the company is in the process of extending to its customer community and industry partners, extending the reach and value of the BDNA platform. BDNA products are available hosted, on-premise and the company is developing SaaS base options for the future.

Market Positioning Challenges 

BDNA may face a market positioning challenges in the ITAM market in comparison to traditional ITAM tools and current SAM tool market incumbents, although many successful enterprises utilize a combination of BDNA and other SAM tools As per the diagram below, whilst BDNA brings considerable value to an ITAM department, it also has significant potential beyond the ITAM department. So to compare BDNA to other ITAM tools would be to miss an opportunity; it is rather like comparing a corkscrew to a Swiss army knife and only comparing the ability to open a bottle of wine; you are missing a trick.

ITAM Review readers exploring BDNA would be wise to explore the broader, horizontal market opportunity rather than compare specifically for the ITAM market. The challenge is that by increasing the scope, IT Asset Managers face a protracted process to get the solution in place as more and more senior stakeholders are involved.

Similarly, BDNA faces the challenge of selling a relatively unique solution to a market yet to be educated of its value without specific budget for this category of technology or awareness of the potential. BDNA as an organization could do more to help with this process – especially how it compares and complements existing SAM tools rather than compete with them. Elements of the catalogues overlap, but BDNA, for instance, does not do License Management.

BDNA may also face increased conflict since leading SAM providers have begun to explore the potential of scenario modeling and “what-if’=” analysis for Enterprise Architects, Projects Managers and IT “builders,“ which may encroach on BDNA’s space.

Weaknesses and Opportunities 

There are no specific weaknesses to highlight in BDNA, which we consider a unique and innovative offering. We would like to see BDNA offer customers more assurance around the breadth of coverage. BDNA currently does a good job of de-duplicating and combining multiple data sets to arrive at a single version of the truth for IT assets. But what if inventory sources can see only 80 percent of the network? We don’t expect BDNA to solve this problem, but we’d like to see them help its customers quantify the risk.

Finally, we would like to see BDNA being more vocal in the ITAM market as thought leaders. The value of trustworthy ITAM data to the rest of the IT department is GOLDEN, and we’d like to see BDNA banging this drum more loudly, helping ITAM practitioners educate their broader IT team colleagues, whilst also raising the profile of BDNA in the market.

Go-to-market strategy 

  • Major Partnerships: ServiceNow, HPE, Troux by Planview, Apptio, CEB, Crossfuze, Fruition Partners/CSC, Reveal IT
  • Indicative pricing: Priced by server and device endpoints

Market Penetration 

  • Number of customers on maintenance: Not disclosed
  • Customers by region: 85% Americas and 15% EMEA/ROW
  • No customer testimonials available on Tools Advisor  
     
       

Company Details 

Headquarters:

BDNA Corporation

339 North Bernardo Avenue, Suite 206

Mountain View, CA 94043 USA

Tel: +1 (650) 625-9530

http://www.bdna.com/

Offices in California, Washington D.C, Belfast

Privately owned with around 180 employees

 

From the BDNA Brochure: 

BDNA transforms enterprise asset data by enriching it with market context to vastly simplify integrations, accelerate business transformation and improve decision-making. Leveraging Technopedia®, the most trusted and comprehensive hardware and software asset information source, BDNA leverages automation, a team of content experts and a proven quality framework to reconcile and normalize enterprise asset data to improve all processes and projects. 

Technopedia’s content library categorizes more than 1.7 million products from 34,000 suppliers with 2,500 daily updates, providing business-critical information such as compatibility, support dates, end-of life, migration plans, current manufacturer and version, and much more. Eliminating manual processes and bottlenecks, BDNA delivers automated and scalable solutions, improving visibility, compliance and time to market. 

Based in Mountain View, Calif., BDNA operates globally with customers across all segments and markets. For more information, please visit www.bdna.com.

[1] https://twitter.com/MikeQuindazzi/status/787801983172288513/

[2] https://www.itassetmanagement.net/2016/10/26/iot/