Applications Used to Manage Content Overflow

The information age has led to a proliferation of electronic information of all shapes and sizes within enterprises, and to sort it all out they will increasingly turn to content and knowledge management applications.

A report from Delphi Group projects solid growth ahead in the content and knowledge management industry, which includes document management, search and retrieval, repositories, object technology, workflow, intranets and portals.

“Demands placed by an expansion of the business Web, while the state of the economy forces streamlining and cost reductions, necessitates greater utilization of content management,” said Carl Frappaolo. “This is not a case of companies scrapping old systems in favor of the latest software. Content already exists within organizations. Content management technology is helping them exploit content to their benefit.”

Approximately one-quarter of the respondents to Delphi’s survey have deployed content management applications either across their entire U.S. operations and/or globally. The respondents also said they see a need for the integration of a wide array of information sources with their content management applications.

HTML pages are the primary source of digital information managed by content management systems, according to the survey. Web content has mushroomed in the past four years as the Internet and intranets have become dominant publishing media. This continues a trend that first manifested itself in the document management software market in late 1998.

“Documents created in Microsoft Office applications are the other very large source of information controlled by content management applications,” said Larry Hawes, a senior analyst at Delphi Group. “Most organizations have distributed the task of creating content across the business and rely on Office applications as their authoring tools. As Microsoft continues to integrate its productivity suite with the Internet, Office documents may become an even larger source of e-business content.”

A number of the respondents to Delphi’s survey had implemented content management systems with mixed results. The companies that voiced the strongest dissatisfaction with their content management system had attempted to integrate it with legacy systems, digital signatures and ERP applications, according to Frappaolo. Integration continues to be a major barrier, but it should become easier as companies deploy newer content management systems.

E-mail, a major source of information flowing into and circulating within organizations, also presents some problems.

“Many of these sources, such as email, are not integrated at this time,” Hawes said. “Few organizations are competent at managing email, but more will need to become adept because this communication channel and it’s near cousin, instant messaging, are important sources of content and knowledge in the networked economy.”

The worldwide market for the tools needed to manage large email systems is projected to reach $556 million by 2006, according to Ferris Research.

The United States and Canada constitute over half the market for such tools. In 2001, the messaging management market will total about $184 million. However, because of increasing demand for the tools in the rest of the world, more than half the market will reside outside of North America by 2006. At present, about 35 percent of large organizations employ these tools. By 2006, this penetration is projected to rise to 60 percent, with a total of some 140 million corporate mailboxes under management.

Most email management tools work with Microsoft’s Exchange and/or Lotus’ Notes email systems. This is important because these two email systems are projected to share more than 90 percent of the world market between them by 2002.

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