ECM as a Cornucopia of Fruit

So, first off, I need to admit this is not my analogy, but I love it! I attended an AIIM conference today and of course the theme was some 8 things they dreamed up about content management. A guy from Hyland Software, Ken Burns, (Onbase is their product) did a presentation on “Got Hope? ECM Vendor Viability in the SharePoint Era”. It was a very good presentation in that it was entertaining, pithy and engaging, with some useful bits. The most useful was the overall point of don’t mindlessly jump into ECM based on a the dreaded magic quadrant or the vendors big name and reputations, pay attention to what it is you need and well try and fetter this out of the multitude of ECM vendors.

Some fun highlights:

  • Several industry leaders “eye charts” as we call them in the consulting world, which is a slide with so damn much crammed into it you cant possibly understand it. The point was how do you make sense out of these things?
  • A magic quadrant with the dots replaced by fruit, a first apples for the “apples to apples” then by other fruit to show well the magic quadrant ain’t so magic if you look at the vendors being compared well as not really even doing the same thing. Genius!! See images below.
  • A breakdown of ECM into about 4 areas, transactional/scanning for ERP type of imagery (invoices etc), Collaborative, Web Content and Infrastructure.
  • Finally there was the bit ECM magic quadrant with the BIG ECM players as a “Cornucopia of Fruit” and you might buy them because the can do everything but suppose you end up with some rotten or unripe fruit in the mix. This is simply a great ECM marketplace analogy.

Here are the pics of the quadrants

So that last bit I started to think about more when I left. Especially as it pertains to our specialty Oracle ECM suite and it’s various products. And well what it maybe there is another problem here, what if people are buying a perfectly good Cornucopia and well suppose they pick out the Orange and well forget about the rest of the fruit that is in there and well .. maybe there is a very good piece of fruit in this thing and you aren’t even looking.

I would say there is some real world customers I know of that have done just that. They buy Oracle UCM for its document management and totally are either unaware of have never taken the time to explore what it can do from a Web Content Management perspective. The WCM tools are very strong, not perfect but who is, and can deliver web content in a very robust way. It happens to be one of my favorite set of tools in Oracle’s ECM bag.

Lets take a look at the “Small Cornucopia” of simply Oracle UCM with the “Large Cornucopia” being ECM Suite.

Oracle UCM includes: (External Reference )

  • Content Server
  • Desktop Integration Suite
  • Document Management
  • Digital Asset Management
  • Conversion
  • Web Content Management
  • Retention Management

On most if not all projects there is simply one focus like “Document management for HR then or AP or Contracts etc” and well they simply don’t even realize there is a very good “Web Content Management” that can host intranets extra-nets and a multitude of other “nets”. In fact the team members are not even connected to the web team and well they don’t even consider that their problem, they are doing document management for the organization and why should they even think about the web content management features.

So just maybe folks that have Oracle UCM/ECM products should take a look at the cornucopia and give all the “fruit” they already own a good once over and see if it’s good tasty fruit before they rush out and buy more of something else.

Got any questions on what it is that you own? Drop me a note [email protected] or post a comment below.