Guest Column | September 30, 2016

5 Must-Haves To Support Your Customers' Digital Transformation

Digital transformation

By Eric Barroca, CEO, Nuxeo

Digital transformation — the strategic alignment of enterprise technology with workers and business processes — is a top priority for a growing number of global firms. In terms of channel support and business opportunity, digital transformation opens up new markets for enterprise content management (ECM) solutions. Organizations grappling with legacy systems find they cannot effectively support rapidly evolving enterprise requirements for managing complex and growing content. It’s an opportunity for solution providers to offer their customers ways to solve this challenge.

Your customers need to address three major disruptions that are occurring as digital transformation takes place: complexity of data, volume of digital content, and diversity of delivery channels. Organizations are collecting, storing, and analyzing data at historic levels. Along with this increasing scale and complexity, organizations are also seeing the expansion of digital content in all areas including the use of social media which demands constantly changing content in video, graphical, and textual forms. The delivery channels for digital content are becoming more diverse due to the proliferation of devices and platforms now available.

Clearly, your customers are facing new challenges in supporting and benefitting from this expanded universe of digital content. To empower your customers’ move from a legacy system to a digital-first business infrastructure, here are five must-haves to consider.

  1. Scalability: Customers are painfully aware their digital content volume is growing. Many customers are finding their legacy content tools cannot scale to support this volume, the increased metadata complexity, and the need for real-time delivery of the information. They are looking for a solution that can scale and support increasingly rich content.
  2. Native Cloud Architecture: Your customers have already invested in cloud file sharing applications including Dropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, and Box. It is mandatory for modern ECM platforms to provide native integrations with these applications to provide a user friendly experience (UX) and help IT further support these cloud file sharing apps.
  3. Modularity: Architects and developers want the flexibility to build custom business applications and will avoid any legacy solution that prevents them from doing so.
  4. Pluggability: Similarly, developers are looking for solutions that have an extensible architecture to give them the flexibility of adding plug-ins they need to build and support their particular enterprise applications.
  5. Metadata Focus: Legacy systems focused on files — as in one video, one pdf, one image — stored in a folder which, in turn, was kept in electronic filing cabinets. This design model was inherited from the management of physical media preceding computers: file cabinets holding folders with printed images, camera slides, and other media, as well as plenty of paper documents. A file-centric design cannot support how today’s digital assets are shared or acted upon. Modern thinkers are moving from this approach to a metadata focus which enables your customers to unify diverse content sources and streamline access to content.

These are five must-haves when moving your customers from a file-centric, legacy system to a modern ECM solution. At the core, modern solutions should support complex content objects in a wide variety of formats, channels and sizes.

It is also a good idea to consider mobile capabilities since mobile users are growing rapidly. Employees using mobile devices will need, and expect, the same enterprise-class access to content, even when offline. Your offered ECM solution needs to provide “native” mobile apps so digital content can be consumed with ease.

Also, since enterprises are concerned about security breaches caused by shared content over diverse devices — which can be subject to malware — you should thinking about integrating security into any ECM solution. Security features such as an audit log to track user actions and access controls are must-haves as workers increasingly access and utilize content collaboratively with global colleagues.

ECM is certainly at the heart of a digital transformation. By taking into account these must-haves and making sure you have security protections in place, you can be successful in helping your customers achieve digital transformation.

About The Author
Eric Barroca is CEO of Nuxeo, developers of a leading Enterprise Content Management (ECM) platform which enables organizations to manage complex digital content at massive scale.