Why content services belong to the cloud

cloud computing

PHOTO: eberhard grossgasteiger


Content services and content service platforms have been around for a long time. They weren’t always called that, but the functionality, to a greater or lesser extent, was available through enterprise content management systems (ECM). However, as anyone who follows the ECM space knows, Gartner put a nail in that coffin in 2017 when Michael Woodbridge predicted the “death of ECM”, although, in practical terms for organizations, little has changed.

ECM is dead

“ECM is now dead (kaput, finished, an old market name),” Woodbridge wrote, “at least in the way Gartner defines the market. It has been replaced by the term Content Services, a strategic concept that covers three aspects, namely Content Services Applications, Platforms and Components.

Since then, that is, over the past three years, Gartner has renamed its Magic Quadrant for ECM to Magic Quadrant for Content Services Platforms (CSP). The most recent (registration required) was released at the end of last month.

In it, Gartner points out that buyers of CSP technology now have many options that can enable them to truly implement a business vision for content services. Advances in federation, intelligence, cloud deployment and user experience mean that the market offers a more modernized set of capabilities than ever before.

Obviously, there are a lot of companies providing what buyers need. There were 18 publishers in total with Microsoft, Hyland, Alfresco, Box and OpenText leading a rapidly changing market. Putting aside the fact that Gartner expects a lot more consolidation in the market over the next 18 months, like what happened with Hyland and Alfresco earlier this year, there are also three trends. key factors that will shape the market over the coming year.

  • Organizations migrate CSP services to the cloud
  • Organizations often demand simplicity and ease of adoption and are often willing to compromise in terms of richer governance and functional services.
  • There will be the development of viable, useful and integrated smart services

Go to the Cloud

According to Gartner, the move to the cloud has been accelerated by the response to the COVID-19 crisis and the need to implement and maintain the flow of content to employees as and when they need it. The cloud is the technology that makes this possible. Research shows that some of the older vendors have been lagging behind in delivering a cloud offering, which has negatively impacted organic growth and market share. In addition, the cloud office (and in particular Microsoft 365) is now the dominant productivity interface and, therefore, all content services must integrate seamlessly with it.

The scalability, flexibility and integrative nature of cloud-based CSPs are three of the main reasons why it is essential for any business, Simon Elkjær, Marketing Director of the Danish company avXperten, noted. It does more than just provide “easy storage” because what it does offer is a fast system that is badly needed in a rapidly changing industry. Now that businesses are forced to move away due to the pandemic, we need cloud-based CSPs more than ever. “

“If businesses want to be productive and perform well in such a difficult time, then they had better start fine-tuning their gears and prepare to embrace the cloud-based CSP giant,” he said. .

Moving the CSP to the cloud is a necessary step to prepare for the future, Petra Odak, marketing director of the British company Better proposals, which develops workplace proposal software, said. While current events force many businesses to relocate remotely, many professionals believe that this shift to the remote workplace is not just temporary. “With tech giants like Hewlett Packard leaving Silicon Valley, it is becoming evident that the big players have realized how much money can be saved by using remote labor,” he said. she adds. “So if you’re not using cloud-based CSP yet, you should be doing it for a simple reason: you will need to do so at some point in the future. In short, it is better to prepare in advance and help yourself and your team adapt more easily.

CSP in the Cloud

Switching to the cloud is not necessarily easy to do, however. Based in Westlake, Ohio Hyland is a leader in the 2020 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Content Services Platforms. Its flagship product, OnBase, is a CSP designed to manage content, processes and cases of formal, operational and business administration. It provides a wide range of rich services covering content and processes, information governance and collaboration from OnBase and other content service offerings in its portfolio.

Ed McQuiston is COO at Hyland. He told us that their customers’ transition to Hyland Cloud Services was a strategic initiative long before the COVID-19 pandemic, but many customers and prospects were unwilling to make cloud offerings a priority.

When COVID hit and businesses were forced to not only switch to virtual management of their employees, but also engage their customers in the same way, cloud discussions instantly accelerated at Hyland. The reliability that a cloud solution can provide; accelerated value, reduced risk and less responsibility for in-house data maintenance was no longer just a good thing to have, it became a requirement for businesses to keep operating.

Globally, he added, the pandemic has prompted organizations to rethink the way they do business. The ease of creating, storing, securing and sharing content is now an expectation for many of our customers. The “cloud convenience” factor in this new normal has reshaped the way companies approach their business now and in the future. Citing a recent article on the transformation of Naviant, Digital transformation: removing barriers to adoption of cloud content services, McQuistion points out that the future of work and the way people want to interact with information are changing; new regulations demand robust information security, team file sharing and collaboration need to span across time and space, and intelligent automation is ready for prime time.

While there are many initiatives organizations can focus on to thrive in this new normal, moving to a mature, proven and secure cloud content services platform is a step in the right direction. “There is no sign of this era of digital transformation slowing down anytime soon, so I encourage organizations to seize this opportunity to reinvent the possibilities within your organization by leveraging a service platform from cloud-based content, ”he said.

Effective CSPs

An effective CSP must offer the intelligent capture of content as well as the management of that content, Blake Hardwick Marketing Director at New York City Greenberg & Stein, concluded. It must be able to efficiently capture and transform all content into a digital space so that it is more easily accessible and enables more efficient use of data in the future.

He should also organize the content in such a way that the access and maintenance process is structured and efficient. This will help business leaders make better business decisions and avoid problems resulting from situations such as during the audit process.

In fact, with the resources that are not available through the cloud and the data and content management demands that businesses now face, even with a content services platform migrating to the cloud, or use a CSP via the cloud seems to make the most business sense in a world drowning in data.


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Jenny T. Curlee

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