ECM Vendors Practicing What They Preach – Not!!

So here’s as interesting blog post about Microsoft’s ECM stated strategy of, “Integrated user-oriented ECM systems,” and the fact Microsoft apparently fails to practice what they preach. In summary an error was found by a reporter on a public Microsoft website, a senior Microsoft guy said he’d get it fixed right away, and it wasn’t fixed by the next day – the blogging reporter saw this as a failure!

Having been involved in the new Open Text website project I can say it generally takes us several weeks to get new content up even though we use Livelink WCM. To qualify that, in my experience blatant errors get fixed by the web team very quickly, but significant changes take much longer. At it’s not really because of the software, but the processes around controlling and structuring what we put on the website.

Maybe it’s because of ‘old think’ combined with specific software. I can get new content on the web in seconds when I do it myself through a blog or forum in Open Text Online Communities. And if you wanted, so could you. Our corporate (www) site is a classic website that like practically that of every other company is seen as a formally published and tightly controlled. The businesses processes around this require time.

In contrast, tools like Livelink as a classic Intranet (even if used externally) provide much more flexibility, but interestingly in order to support this flexibility they require user membership and authentication.

So it seems that in practice, at least for corporations, “Integrated user-oriented ECM systems,” require user management for both contributors and consumers, and this is not a characteristic of corporate websites. In contrast, in the consumer web the authentication of content consumers is not required. Witness this blog I cited – rapid posting and response by others while Microsoft still hasn’t fixed the issue. I don’t think businesses are ready for “Business at the speed of thought” as Bill Gates once called it.