The Competitive Intelligence function at GitLab has two primary constituencies (1) Our prospects and customers (2) Our sales organization, which includes partners who assist in sales efforts.
Prospects and Customers: In keeping with a GitLab core value of transparency, Competitive Intelligence will ensure that anyone looking to an end-to-end DevOps solution has the information they need to make the right and unbiased decisions that serve the customer's business goal. To this end, all our product comparison pages are un-gated and available at DevOps Tools Comparison Pages. GitLab believes that transparency of competitive intelligence creates a well informed customer and gives teams the information to be successful during their DevOps journey.
Sales Team: Another GitLab core value is results. Sales is a key constituency that helps GitLab achieve results. Hence parts of the Competitive Intelligence material is targeted at helping our sales teams effectively sell to our prospects, thereby delivering value that fulfills the customer's business needs.
The competitive intelligence team brings timely and insightful analysis of competitors' actions to help guide the actions and direction of GitLab.
These assets have two different purposes:
All our internal competitive intelligence (competitor cards, internal webinars and documents) are hosted on our Highspot page, leveraging our Crayon competitive intelligence tool, which hosts the competitor cards.
For more information on Crayon, see our competitive intelligence page in the internal handbook
Access to Crayon has been opened to all our Sales, Product, Engineering, and Marketing teams. You can access Crayon through the Okta tile (search for it within Okta if it doesn't appear on your list). In the spirit of the GitLab value of collaboration, all accounts are given "collaborator" level access, meaning all users can create and edit content in the same way as the competitive intelligence team. Users may be downgraded to "viewer" access if necessary.
If you are not in these teams and require access, reach out to @jkempton on slack with your request.
In the spirit of the GitLab values of iteration and collaboration, Crayon is designed to allow GitLab teammates to contribute and develop any and all competitive intelligence, wherever and whenever they encounter it, rather than it being gatekept by just the Competitive Intelligence Team. In that regard, the team are encouraged to update, correct, amend and comment on competitive intelligence news, on competitive cards, and collaborate on competitive boards to ensure everyone has the best and most up-to-date information. Crayon also has a dedicated analyst working behind the scenes to help source and surface competitive intelligence; you may see comments from our analyst within the Crayon tool.
For any questions around how to use the Crayon platform, please use Crayon’s own FAQ before reaching out to ‘@jkempton’ for any help.
Note also that the “help” functionality on the tool should ONLY be used for questions around the use of the Crayon tool, and not for general questions directed at the GitLab competitive intelligence team (for example, questions like “Can you help with this competitor” should be shared in the ‘#competition’ slack channel, not asked as a question through Crayon)
Any GitLab Sales, Product, Engineering, and Marketing team member can contribute to Crayon including:
When adding, removing or amending competitive information to Crayon, please follow the process below:
Remember that Crayon is designed for hosting our competitive information for the field to quickly reference. It is not a dictionary of information with expansive explanations, and needs to be straight to the point with truthful and simple explanations.
Clozd is our third-party win/loss interview partner. Clozd allows us to undertake deep-dive interviews with customers or prospects who have evaluated GitLab. We have engaged the services of Clozd to ensure we get a non-biased view of our marketing, our sales process, and product capabilities, and to help solve the following challenges:
We will engage Clozd with 60 interviews over the course of FY 2024. Our aim is to have a small majority of these as losses versus wins, as these tend give us greater insight into our shortcomings as a company. We will also split out interviews geographically in line with GitLab sales.
Our win criteria:
Our loss criteria:
In order to mitigate the risk associated with Win/Loss communications, the following plan has been agreed internally with the Privacy team:
|Clozd can send Win/Loss communications in the United States with no further consent from the Prospect/Lead because the United States is on Opt-Out.|
|Clozd can send automated communications in the rest of the world if there is a Win opportunity with the Prospect/Lead because then future communications are subject to a transaction and Soft Opt-In is available in the majority of the world|
|Generally Clozd cannot send automated communications in the rest of the world if there is a Loss with the Prospect/Lead because then Soft Opt-in is not available. However, these communications can be sent if the following is true:|
|The GitLab sale representative asks the Prospect/Lead during its conversations whether they can be contacted by Clozd for Loss analysis and the Prospect/Lead agrees|
|There is some kind of proof of that agreement, such as an email confirmation or contemporaneous call notes stating the Prospect/Lead agreed to subsequent communications|
|The Clozd business owner, @jkempton, manually sends the contact information to Clozd upon validating the two prior sub-bullets|
At GitLab, anyone can contribute to the Competitive Intelligence process. We strive to meet the following goals.
GitLab exists in an ecosystem of DevOps tools and might need to interact with any number of these tools. Many have over-lapping capabilities, but that does not mean that we necessarily directly compete with them. A user would need to patch together multiple solutions from this list in order to get all the functionality that is built-in to GitLab as a single application for end-to-end DevOps.
We tend to include those products also in the DevOps Tools comparison pages so customers have a comprehensive understanding of how we view the full landscape, not necessarily in competitive terms. Refer to this handbook page for more information on who GitLab competes with.
As always the customer's voice is absolutely critical in this. Fortunately there are several such third party neutral sites that capture customer feedback about DevOps Tools, including GitLab. Here are some sites that have feedback on GitLab - in the customer's voice.
Comparison's at a deep level are challenging and time consuming. We'd like to acknowledge some other sites that have done a sincere and strong effort at comparing DevOps tools. Some of these are by competitors but in keeping with GitLab values of transparency and to provide our prospects a comprehensive picture - here they are:
The goal of the Competitive Intelligence team will be to provide a complete set of assets and other deliverables that enable sales teams to compete and win. The diagram below captures the overall approach. The idea is that for each use case-competitor with the exception of the strategy document (hosted in Crayon), all other resources should generally be publicly accessible. This is in keeping with GitLab value of Transparency.
See the Solutions Marketing page for more information.