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CRM and BPM vendor Pegasystems adds new AI features

The CRM and business process management vendor, looking to scale up, introduced new features for business users, service representatives and call center customers.

Pegasystems updated its Pega Infinity software suite with new AI features for business users, including back-end operations employees and service representatives, as well as developers.

The CRM and business process management (BPM) vendor, based in Cambridge, Mass., added the AI capabilities on Oct. 18 in its Pega Infinity 8.8 enterprise low-code platform update, with new features for Pega Platform, Pega Customer Decision Hub and Pega Customer Service.

The update's tilt toward non-data scientist citizen developers adheres to the trend of software vendors -- including tech giants, midsized companies and startups -- orienting AI systems and capabilities toward business users.

Targeting business users

With the update, Pegasystems also targeted business users with new AI capabilities for its Pega Platform automation system, including Developer Assistant panel, an application that provides recommendations to developers; Prediction Widget, which shows users how AI-powered predictions are made; and Pega Robot Studio, which enables users to build and deploy bots to automate repetitive tasks.

The vendor also focused on its core customer engagement technology with new capabilities such as Pega Customer Data Connectors that link Pega Hub with customer data platforms such as Adobe and Celebrus, and Impact Analyzer for monitoring business goals and AI models in rea time.

They can compete by making it easier to use, and to find their strongholds in certain industries like insurance, and financial institutions.
Predrag JakovljevicAnalyst, Technology Evaluation Centers

While competitors such as Salesforce with its Einstein AI system, Verint and Appian -- which was awarded a $2b judgement against Pegasystems in a theft of trade secrets lawsuit that Pega is appealing -- offer similar automation products, Pegasystems still has some room to compete, said Predrag Jakovljevic, an analyst at Technology Evaluation Centers.

"They can compete by making it easier to use, and to find their strongholds in certain industries like insurance and financial institutions," Jakovljevic said, adding that Pegasystems has long been strong in decisioning, next best action and case management in applications such as insurance claims and mortgage forms.

Scaling up

Like other software automation vendors such as UiPath, Automation Anywhere and Blue Prism, Pegasystems is looking for opportunities to scale up, said Andy Thurai, an analyst at Constellation Research.

The Impact Analyzer is particularly interestinghe said, because it recommends customer engagement strategies based on cases, engagement policies and business goals. However, AI capabilities for voice and messaging -- which provide a new interaction timeline with transcription capabilities and call wrap-up functions -- are already in the arsenal of other vendors in the call center market, he noted.

"Pega is much behind some of the vendors in the automation space and has some catching up to do," Thurai said, adding that some of their competitors are ahead, especially in process efficiency identification and automation using AI and ML technologies.

Pegasystems' competitors in the RPA and BPM sphere have a better roadmap for that market, he said.

"The RPA market overall is slowing, yes, but the innovative ones are moving towards to different kinds of automation such as IT automation," Thurai said. "Given that Pega has a decent customer base, it might be worth experimenting with doing improvements with them, but it might be very hard to attract newer customers against some mighty competitors."

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