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The lack of home use / learning editions of Alteryx is a serious mid-term competitive threat factor for Alteryx - and it's well worth both this Alteryx community; and the Alteryx Community Management team making this a key priority for the Alteryx platform.
The BI/Data science space is very competitive (as evidenced by the recent Gartner 2016 Magic Quadrants), and although Alteryx was given very favourable review in some factors - there were serious concerns about licensing costs; and time to productivity.
Clearly - Alterxy succeeds in direct proportion to the size of the active user base - so the question is "How do we increase the licensed / deployed user base" and I believe that there are 3 factors which all relate to the issue of learning-edition alteryx licenses.
a) Time to productivity: Right now - I cannot ask one of my staff to learn Alteryx at home and prove their capability before paying several thousand dollars to give them a license. Once I give them a license; it then takes them 2-3 months to become productive, and we run the lottery of finding out whether this person was a good fit for this kind of role in the first place. Solution: Make Alteryx available in a learning edition at home with a robust certification program; and a learning progression built in - that way I can tell my staff "I will give you a license once you demonstrate your competence by learning to this level". How does this help Alteryx: lower time to productivity = more attractive product
b) Size of committed user base: As tech professionals - we take our tech bias with us to our new role (the "Affinity effect"), and often will have some leverage in tool selection. The more people know Alteryx and are invested in their Alterxy skill set - the greater this "Affinity effect" will start to show in sales figures. This also makes the tool more sticky, reducing the defector population if users can see and use latest features at home.
Solution: Give the learning edition away for free - Pentaho spoon is currently free for learning; as is Tableau Public; and MS Power BI is incredibly cheap to learn. If Alteryx doesn't do this - others definitely will anyway, and this "Affinity Effect" will be washed out.
c) Increase the skill pool in the market: The more wide-spread the skills are - the more likely I am to purchase a toolset. So - if Alteryx skills are very broadly available in the market - it's easier to make the purchase decision for Alteryx rather than competitors. However - right now the skillset growth is severely constrained, so Alteryx is making the "Buy Alteryx" decision needlessly harder.
Solution: Make Alteryx available for training; learning; & Certification for free.
Note: Although this is directly contrary to my personal interests in the short term (the smaller the number of people with skillX, the higher the market value), it is also long-term selfish because I will be able to increase the impact within my firm by having access to a greater pool of skilled and instantly productive workers in the market.
Although price may be an issue - this is a separate matter. I believe that Alteryx can do a lot to create future sales pipeline, and a committed and very sticky user base by providing this home-learning & certification program. In my mind - this is probably one of the biggest competitive opportunities & threats facing Alteryx right now, given the velocity of this particular industry & segment.
I'd be very happy to talk this through in detail with the Alteryx team if that's helpful (just PM me)