Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Specialized document management products challenging ECM mega-suites

Posted by Mark Brousseau

The divide between "Enterprise Content Management Suite" platform vendors and more specialized Document Management product suppliers is becoming more pronounced, giving buyers more choices to address a broad range of content management challenges, according to new research by The Real Story Group (formerly CMS Watch).

The Real Story Group just released its annual Enterprise Content Management (ECM) and Document Management Marketplace overviews earlier this week, including "Cross-Check" charts for both sets of vendors. The overviews assess changes that have occurred in the previous 12 months, as well as trends emerging in today's marketplace. This research differs from other market analyses by focusing on needs and impact for the buyers and users of technology, not the sellers. "It's a risk mitigation report," notes Real Story Group analyst Alan Pelz-Sharpe, "giving you an inside look at what is really going on among the vendors and what you need to know to make the right procurement decisions." Given the divide between the more focused Document Management market and ECM suites, The Real Story Group has created two Cross-Checks.

There are no "leading" vendors or "magic" segments here. A vendor's suitability may depend on the enterprise customers' risk profile, as well as the "fit" of the technology itself, which The Real Story Group evaluates in its subscription-based research.

Other key takeaways from this analysis conclude that:

• There is continued consolidation at the top end of the market
• More focused Document Management vendors continue to thrive
• International and non-traditional options (open source/cloud) continue to disrupt both markets
• SharePoint 2010 will be remain a strong contender and competitor — but typically not a replacement system

Just as importantly, the ECM market is strong and continues to grow, with dozens of viable supplier options targeting specific business problems. "When it comes to selecting the best technology for your enterprise, you must look beyond ‘the top right quadrant,’" argues Real Story Group founder Tony Byrne. "Otherwise you'll blind yourself to many other great options."

What do you think?

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