So this past week it became common knowledge that Dell sold off Documentum to OpenText. This move has spawn more conversations around the long term viability of Documentum and what happens to the current install base. Well, this old fart thinks that they will milk the maintenance contracts for as long as possible, and then ultimately move existing customers onto the next version of OpenText. Whether or not that migration turns out to be a hybrid of the two products is unknown. But, over the last 35 years, I have not seen any ECM related mergers go on to maintain multiple products over the long haul. I think back to when JetForm bought out Delrina FormFlow; ultimately both being acquired by Adobe and quickly disappearing from the market in record time.
So while the many remaining ECM players look at this development, and scratch their heads, I have another observation to make. Why do we even care about an application that was designed in the 1990’s and has had such a jaded reputation for the last ten years? Sure, they have some big accounts stuck on this product right now, but it is not the kind of framework you would want to start out with today. Any ECM application that runs on top of a relational database will have great difficulty scaling to the new massive content requirements of the next twenty years and beyond.
It remains my point of view, that with the emerging technologies in the open source community, ECM systems should be larger, faster, less expensive, and easier to maintain than the dinosaurs of the 1990’s and early 2000’s.
This blog will endeavor to investigate and explain viable alternatives to many of the most expensive ECM / ERM systems in the market today.