AIIM’s Future History of Content Management: A Social Business Revolution

image As I discussed previously, AIIM teamed with Geoffrey Moore to map out the future of Content Management.  I was interested enough to attend the webinar on the topic to see what additional details I could glean.

Here are my notes from the webinar.  You can also download the presentation for details to blend with my notes [and my thoughts].

Setting the Context

  • Gartner has noted that there is a 8-year feast/8-year famine IT growth cycle.  The current 8-year famine is theoretically coming to an end.
  • Built large Systems of Record.  Transaction systems for global commerce
  • Enterprise IT focus recently has been on optimize and take System of Records burden and spread it out.
  • There are 3 factors refining IT for Consumers”: Access, Broadband, and Mobile. [The latter two are just instances of the first]
  • “How can it be I am so powerful as a consumer and so LAME as an employee!!??”
  • What will force Enterprise IT to adopt Consumer IT?

Next Generation Content is “Social”

  • New IT is Systems of Engagement. Interacting in the moment [If you know Enterprise 2.0, you know Systems of Engagement]
  • Impact on B2B Enterprises
    • Increased demand for Collaboration and Relationship Management
    • Challenge: To engage with peers globally to solve problems
    • Burden falls on the middle of the organization (where there hasn’t been a lot of IT investment)
    • Need to invest in “IT for the middle tier”
  • Impact on B2C(onsumer) Enterprises
    • Commoditization, massive volumes at low margins
    • Transition from Transactions to Interactions
    • Relevant offers in real time, driven by math based upon preferences and history

The Future of Content Management

  • Change from Systems of Record (SoR) to Systems of Engagement (SoE) [SoR not going away]
  • Content is going from one (SoR) Author to Many (SoE) [Yes]
  • Documents becoming Rich Media
  • Searching gets harder [And it isn’t easy in SoR now]
  • Regulated/Security to Open/Liability
  • Social Content Management [Another TLA? Really?]
    • Artifacts are NOT enterprise content (ownership is blurred)
    • Artifacts valuable to enterprise [Which makes them enterprise content]
    • Need to manage social content due to value, but we aren’t there yet
  • Evolution in B2B applications:
    • Productivity: Collaboration, online and recorded
    • Collaboration: Multi-site dialogs, social media marketing
    • Market Insight: Extract information to enhance business
    • Cycle Time Reduction: Support real-time decision making
    • Co-innovation: Secure workspaces with partners [Talks about firewalls, important but wrong context]
  • Evolution in B2C applications:
    • Broadcast
    • Connect
    • Learn
    • Support: Predictive and consumer friendly
    • Personalize

Closing Thoughts

image Time for some more thoughts on this report now that I’ve heard it discussed.  Essentially, AIIM has caught up to where we are now.  This isn’t the Future.  These are challenges that people are tackling now.

I think what we are talking about here is the challenges facing companies now.  These are important, but the term “Future” is a stretch.  This research avoids the obvious issue of exponential content growth and only lightly touches the issue of users in the B2B world needing to collaborate without a firewall.

It definitely doesn’t address any thoughts on what should be done to address these challenges and it complete ignores the cloud, specifically SaaS.

Part of the problem may be a little bit of Group-Think.  Look at the vendors that participated:

  • Alfresco
  • EMC
  • Hyland
  • IBM
  • Iron Mountain
  • Kodak
  • Microsoft
  • OpenText

The only non-“old school” vendor is Alfresco.  That said, Alfresco always seem to be trying to take down the established players.  They always seem to be following the trail blazed by others, just with a story combining Open-Source and fresh architecture.

There is still a White Paper to come out of this, so I will withhold final judgment.  Just not feeling very positive about this really addressing the future.  What I think they may have here is a better approach to helping people with today.


    3 thoughts on “AIIM’s Future History of Content Management: A Social Business Revolution

    1. Good post – for me the whole thing was summed up in the last section – look at who participated. (And I agree that Alfresco is not new thinking – just new packaging to old thinking). The AIIM community was the wrong group to address this issue.


    2. I don’t like the System of Record -> System of Engagement split. I don’t think that is very realistic. It might reflect how some organisations work, it might reflect some current business processes, but I really don’t see it as the “future” at all.

      I think the future of content management might be about holistic “systems thinking” , about integration and about how to work with interfaces like CMIS. I think the future for managing content is about integrating that content, whatever it is, whoever authored it, and whatever system it lives in, into the right process at the right time for the particular user in question. That means finding it, categorizing and having it available to present it to the user, for use or repuprosing, whether its in the SoR or any of a number of SoE’s.

      Carl, I don’t think the broader AIIM Community was the wrong group to address this issue, but perhaps a ‘strategy council’ of practitioners (with a heavy focus on ‘users’) would be more forward looking than the vendors ?


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