Enterprise Content Management in Digital Age

By Ajay Kumar Jha, Head, Device Technology at MTS - Sistema Shyam Teleservices Ltd

We live in the era of Information Management and these world is all about Data AND Content, not Data OR Content. As an enterprise professional with strategic responsibilities, time is our more precious commodity. Wherein we want information both fast, and in crisp.

From Efficiency to Transformation

The way people live and work with information is undergoing radical change while it itself continues to grow exponentially. Information today expands not just in volume, but variety. Arriving not only as documents and email, but chats, images, video, voice, blogs, scans, rich media and the list continues to grow. These new types and context for information, driven through rapidly evolving consumption and distribution channels like social and mobile, have created an enormous opportunity and challenge for business.

It’s a new information landscape, with entirely new economies of value. Organizations which learn to capitalize on this new landscape-from emerging media to cloud technologies will prosper. Those who fail by not able to effectively govern their rapidly growing content, or rethink inflexible IT infrastructures will fall behind. When an organization leverages information to revolutionize how it competes and transform how it does business, it exhibits and depicts an information advantage.

Data now grows in 3D

By the virtue of social media and host of other related technologies tones and tones of information measured in GB/TB/PB is being produced on daily basis. Much of this is unstructured and extraordinarily difficult to manage. All this lead to the birth of “Big Data” and its challenge, is to arrange and find meaning of this massive data information. This information is not only growing in sheer volume but also in richness and dispersion.

As we are maturing to a paperless society, it does not make sense to print out records and physically handle them, most data now is digital. That’s what the current digitalization aims for. ECM aka Enterprise Content Management involves lifecycle of event like information capture, manage, store, preserve, and deliver it back as and when needed.

Evolution of Document Management System

ECM technology has been around for decades, enabling businesses to effectively manage content for serving customers and employees better. It started as Document Management System (DMS) where various documents could

be digitized, stored and managed through imaging, storage and document & record management technologies. The goal was to address the challenges in managing paper docu- ments and to ease electronic information access.

DMS transformed into ECM over the years with greater goals of 100% paperless enterprise and digitization of content. This involved automation of complete content lifecycle across departments and management of documents and records.

ECM further advanced by leveraging cloud, mobility, analytics, and social technologies to address the demands of multi-digital content. Allowing easy access to information through mobile devices by ex-tending business applications on cloud. ECM would further evolve, as technology vendors add advanced capabilities such as content analytics, robotic process automation and rich content management.

Enterprise Content Technologies have been undergoing tremendous shift over the last decade, to the extent that ECM has been proclaimed dead by some. This can be quite a challenge for technology decision makers as they try to decipher signals amidst all the noise. It’s important to whittle out the wheat from the chaff.

Analysts predict the future of technology segment based on various parameters. Underlying fundamentals form the base on which analyst are predicting the future of ECM technology:

• Market Definition - how the software affects the market amidst new technologies and products;

• Software Vendors - how they are mapped in the market as per their technological and business capabilities; and

• Technology Capabilities - how the technology elucidates evolving customer needs.

ECM has to be built on modern architectures with transparent & intelligent content services

ECM products are expected to enhance their core capabilities with transparent and intelligent content services on cloud with contemporary architectures, lending flexibility to deliver business-ready applications with content management capabilities. Transparent and Intelligent Services would include

1. Out-of-the-box Integration services to make LOB systems content centric,

2. Flexible licensing models based on business value units to provide clear ROI predictability to businesses,

3. Modular services in the platform to deploy business-specific apps,

4. Low code or no code application designs for easy deployment by business users, and

5. Single information governance control across all the connected systems with capabilities for contextual content capture and delivery on mobile.

Upcoming technologies that would power ECM are:

• Cognitive Content Services – Chat-bots to take care of repeatable work;

• Machine Learning - to enable users make smarter decisions with system generated recommendations and

• Analytics - to uncover contextual information hidden in documents and to derive business value across customer lifecycle;

Enterprise architecture (EA) professionals must give a thought on how they manage their content — and consider how transparent, intelligent services can elevate content beyond traditional repositories

The transformation from ECM to content services denotes an important conceptual shift. Redefining the market as content services recognizes that it is no longer strictly about the storage of content for the enterprise, but rather about the consideration of how content is used by individuals and teams — internally and externally — to create, collaborate, share, transform, and leverage that content in business processes and to gain insight. This transformation will be a multiyear evolution in many organizations, and reflects a change in requirements from buyers, affecting several markets.

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