EMC's Revitalized Strategy and Products to Address TCO and Deployment Challenges for Enterprise Content Management

27 March 2013 ID:G00249366
Analyst(s): Kenneth Chin, Karen M. Shegda

VIEW SUMMARY

IT leaders, ECM strategists and enterprise architects deploying ECM applications are increasingly challenged to deliver lower TCO, improved performance and faster implementation. EMC's revitalized strategy and new Documentum Platform 7 focuses on addressing these customer challenges.

Overview

Impacts

  • EMC's launch of Documentum Platform 7 offers the potential for improved usability, scalability and lower TCO, but results will vary based on the application and customization.
  • Deploying EMC OnDemand requires organizations to assess and understand the differences in the costs and benefits of a cloud vs. an on-premises deployment of Documentum.
  • EMC's revitalized strategy and new product releases provides its existing customers and prospects looking for enterprise content management (ECM) with a robust, long-term strategic solution.

Recommendations

  • Assess and plan for future upgrades to Documentum 7.0, but validate the performance and TCO expectations, as they may vary with each implementation.
  • Assess whether the EMC OnDemand as a cloud option fits your ECM strategy, business drivers and risk tolerance.
  • Assess EMC's strategy and products to see how it fits into your long-term, strategic ECM plans.

Analysis

Gartner has seen the decline of EMC's content management business, due to its high costs and complexities combined with an increasingly competitive market. EMC's revitalized content management strategy has focused on improving the user experience (through Documentum D2 and Documentum xCP 2.0), providing cloud alternatives (EMC OnDemand and Syncplicity) and more industry solutions (Documentum for Life Sciences and Documentum EPFM).

The new products launched at the company's Momentum event in November 2012, address a major issue with EMC Documentum (and content management applications in general) — high TCO and deployment time. This analysis helps IT leaders, ECM strategists and enterprise architects understand EMC's strategy and new Documentum products for their planning processes.

Documentum Platform 7.0 represents major releases for the Documentum product portfolio, including Documentum 7.0, Documentum xCP 2.0, Captiva 7.0 and Document Sciences 4.5. As part of EMC's strategy to try and regain its leadership in the ECM market, the new products are expected to lower TCO by improving performance and scalability, while reducing the infrastructure required.

Another key element of Documentum 7.0 is the xCelerated Management System (xMS), which supports automated, policy-based provisioning of a solution for faster deployment and reduces dependency on Documentum installation expertise. It is also optimized for virtualized environments.

EMC claims significant improvements in CPU and memory utilization, while delivering price savings up to eight times better and deployments up to 10 times faster, compared to its Documentum 6.7 release. Since it's still too early for new deployments and upgrades, these claims have yet to be independently substantiated. Nevertheless, it is important for current EMC customers and prospects to evaluate Documentum 7 when planning for upgrades and or purchases.

EMC has also integrated Syncplicity (acquired in May 2012) to Documentum through EMC Syncplicity Connector for Documentum. While Syncplicity is deployed as a cloud file share and sync service, the integration now provides another option to collaborate and share through Documentum and can be deployed using on-premises storage. File sharing and device syncing is increasingly becoming an important option for ECM solutions, as content is consumed more broadly, as well as providing a cost-effective way of sharing content.

Figure 1. Impact and Recommendations for IT Leaders, ECM Strategists and Enterprise Architects
Figure 1.Impact and Recommendations for IT Leaders, ECM Strategists and Enterprise Architects

Source: Gartner (March 2013)

Impacts and Recommendations

EMC's launch of Documentum Platform 7 offers the potential for improved usability, scalability and lower TCO, but results will vary based on the application and customization

Existing Documentum customers need to evaluate and plan for their upgrades to Documentum 7.0. The value proposition of lower TCO, better usability and improved performance and scalability can be enticing — but understand the upgrade path and requirements.

The upgrade path and requirements include the following:

  • Documentum customers can upgrade from Documentum 6.5, 6.6 and 6.7 to Documentum 7.0, but customers running release 5.6 or earlier will need to go through intermediate upgrades.
  • Customers will also need to upgrade to Documentum 7.0 before using Documentum xCP 2.0, which can be upgraded from Documentum xCP 1.6.
  • Documentum D2, a Web-based configurable client and UI requires Documentum 6.7 or later.

Documentum D2 is also fundamental to EMC's TCO strategy by providing a more cost-effective client than Documentum Webtop. Documentum D2 is a Web-based configurable client rather than a customizable client, resulting in quicker deployments and lower cost upgrades. Alternatively, applications requiring significant customization for their respective client interface would be better with Documentum Webtop and upgrading from Documentum Webtop to Documentum D2 will also involve additional costs.

As with all product updates, the upgrade to Documentum 7.0 can be resource, time and cost intensive. Organizations should determine the benefits of the upgrade and validate the performance and TCO claims from EMC before proceeding, as they may vary depending on your applications, infrastructure and architecture. Likewise, as with most major releases, expect a service patch release to come out to address the typical release issues with Documentum 7.0.

Recommendations:

  • Assess and plan on future upgrades to Documentum 7.0, but validate the performance and TCO expectations, as they may vary with each implementation.
  • Consider migrating to Documentum D2 as a client and UI replacement for Documentum Webtop where minimal customization is required, as this will lower long-term TCO and provide easier upgrades in the future.

Deploying EMC OnDemand requires organizations to assess and understand the differences in the costs and benefits of a cloud vs. an on-premises deployment of Documentum

Demand for cloud content management is growing, but organizations find the costs, time and complexity of implementing and supporting on-premises ECM applications to be substantial. EMC OnDemand, introduced in November 2011, is an alternative to deploying an on-premises instance of Documentum applications and part of the overall EMC strategy of lowering TCO and faster implementation.

EMC offers deployment of Documentum, Captiva and Documentum Sciences applications in a private cloud environment. While EMC customers have been slow to adopt this delivery alternative for their content management applications, it provides choice and potential cost savings, depending on their application requirements.

Unlike traditional software as a service cloud solutions, EMC OnDemand is a private cloud solution and requires customers to purchase software licenses and maintenance contracts. Customers with Documentum licenses can use them for their cloud applications; services are also required for the implementation and customization of Documentum applications.

In many cases, the infrastructure costs will not vary significantly from typical on-premises deployments. The benefits will be achieved from the speed and flexibility of provisioning the application and the long-term support and maintenance of both the application and infrastructure, including future upgrades.

Organizations looking to reduce their data center footprint (or those that are geographically diverse), can benefit from EMC OnDemand implementations of Documentum.

Recommendations:

  • Assess whether the EMC OnDemand as a cloud option fits your ECM strategy, business drivers and risk tolerance.
  • Evaluate the financial model to verify that EMC OnDemand will actually deliver TCO savings over the expected life span of the application.

EMC's revitalized strategy and new product releases provides its existing customers and prospects looking for ECM with a robust, long-term strategic solution

EMC's major product and solution releases in 2012, along with its acquisition of Syncplicity, demonstrates its commitment to the ECM market. The company's strategy and products should be well received, as buyers of ECM solutions are looking to reduce the cost of their content management applications and shorten implementation and integration times, while addressing demands from end users for improved usability and mobility features.

Additionally, EMC has re-emphasized the development of industry solutions with new ones, such as Documentum Quality and Manufacturing Solution for Life Sciences and Documentum EPFM (engineering, plant and facilities management) for Utilities.

EMC's vertical focus on life sciences, energy, financial services, healthcare and the public sector with industry solutions, offers a faster time to deployment and better ROI.

Recommendations:

  • Assess EMC's strategy and products (including Document Platform 7), to see how it fits into your long-term ECM plans.
  • Determine if a solutions-based approach can help to improve the speed and costs of deployment for ECM applications.

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Strategic Planning Assumption

By 2015, 70% of enterprises will include a cloud file sharing and sync capability when they are implementing or upgrading enterprise content management applications.