Top 5 benefits of a cloud content management system

In recent research from Forrester, the firm found that a modern content management strategy was crucial for organizations to meet their digital transformation objectives. The…

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Alison Clarke

December 10, 20207 minute read

In recent research from Forrester, the firm found that a modern content management strategy was crucial for organizations to meet their digital transformation objectives. The survey showed over 75% of respondents felt improving content management was essential to accelerating their digital business. For Forrester, a modern content management approach means cloud content management. This article examines some of the benefits you should expect from a cloud-based content management solution.

In its report, Forrester explained why it sees cloud-based content management as so vital for digital transformation: “As demands for collaboration capabilities increase and content becomes more digital, the ability to provide simple, secure, and seamless access to content for both internal and external stakeholders is crucial to driving business success…Cloud content services simplify access, content creation, and processing with both customers and business partners, streamlining the experience of interacting with content for all stakeholders.”

Cloud content management makes content automatically available when and where the user needs it. It delivers information through cloud content services that are customized to any business use case, and delivered directly into the business applications your employees are using. For most organizations, these services are provided through a central cloud content management platform – such as OpenText Extended ECM Platform or OpenText Documentum.

(You can find a more complete definition in our earlier article on: What is cloud content management?)

This is an area of digital technology that is undergoing rapid adoption. puts the value of the cloud content management market at $12.6 billion in 2020—driven by developing use cases such as case management and workflow management— and estimated to grow to $34 billion by 2022. This growth is being driven by the benefits that organizations are achieving through their adoption of cloud-based content management systems.

A little more from Forrester

Cloud content management solutions have evolved out of the traditional enterprise content management (ECM) space. ECM was designed to gain control corporate content by introducing a central repository to store and manage content throughout its lifecycle. However, ECM systems were often cumbersome and far from user friendly. In its research, Forrester asked respondents to rate the benefits of cloud content management software against on-premise ECM installation. You can see the results in the table below.

Graph demonstrating what benefits has your organization experienced as a result of its cloud approach for content storage, management, and collaboration?

The responses from those surveyed are very revealing. In the past, the need for content management solutions has been understood in terms of improvements in cost, efficiency and compliance. However, it’s clear that the introduction of cloud content management solutions—you could think of it as cloud-based enterprise content management—has completely changed perspective on the benefits to be achieved. The operational virtues of cost, efficiency and compliance, while still important, have been superseded by strategic business goals such as improved customer satisfaction, increased collaboration and faster sales cycles.

Examining the key benefits of cloud content management

Let’s take a look at five key benefits that companies are reaping through the adoption of cloud content management solutions.

Releasing the value in content

The sheer volume of documents and content generated in an enterprise has driven the need to manage and store the generated information, as well as make it available and usable for knowledge workers. As much as 80% of all information within an organization is unstructured information in documents, emails, videos, etc. This has been termed ‘big content’. The business value locked up in big content is every bit as great as the value in big data. On-premise ECM, with its emphasis on control and compliance, allowed content to be managed but not optimized. Cloud-based content management aligns content with business processes to focus on empowering staff and partners and release the full value of the content available to your organization.

Increasing collaboration within the organization…and beyond

Highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic, people need to be able to view and work on documents from anywhere, whether at home, on the road or in the office. The best cloud content management systems enable secure access on any device. It has become even more foundational for digital transformation by facilitating the flow of ideas and sharing of information between staff and their larger trading community. It provides the information when and where it’s needed to increase collaboration and innovation throughout the community. By delivering secure and scalable access to content, cloud helps rapidly establish the new operational models being rolled out into a post-pandemic world.

Integrating content with business processes

Today, organizations need to automate horizontal processes like accounts payable, invoice processing, case management, contracts management and correspondence management. To meet this ever-increasing demand for connectivity across company borders, cloud-based enterprise content management solutions are designed to be integrated into core business processes and systems. The cloud content management platform delivers centralized information management and governance while ensuring that content is made available at the edge through integration into enterprise applications—such as ERP or CRM—to empower the employee at each stage of the process, while helping to automate previously manual content-driven process steps.

Increasing employee productivity and satisfaction

A cloud-centric approach to content management brings proven productivity gains over previous on-premise systems. Forrester found that twice as many companies saw productivity benefits from their cloud content management systems as those with only on-premise systems. A major explanation for this is the greater usability that cloud systems deliver. To over-simplify, content can now be pushed to the person so they can more quickly and effectively do their job.

The Forrester survey found that content usability was the third greatest benefit expected from a cloud-based content management solution. Another reason for the importance of usability is the growth of millennials within the modern workforce. It’s predicted that, by 2025, three quarters of the global workforce will be millennials that expect an excellent user experience delivered to their chosen device. A good cloud content management solution is not only vital to release the value in business content, it’s a major part of attracting and retaining staff.

Increasing security and data protection

It’s strange that the massive rise in cloud adoption has not dispelled the concerns within many organizations about information security. Ironically, the levels of security available on the web now outstrip those available through on-premise deployments. In addition, a cloud content management system is having its security updated on a real-time basis. Upgrades and patches are performed as they’re available rather than when maintenance cycles dictate.

This is also true when it comes to data protection. New regulations such as GDPR or CCPA place much greater responsibility on the organization on how it stores, manages and uses sensitive data. Cloud services help ensure enterprises know where all data is stored, who’s using it and how it’s being used. However, there will always be cases where—whether by necessity or desire—some information will be retained behind the corporate firewall. The leading cloud content management companies offer flexible, hybrid cloud and on-premise support to enable deployments that best suit exact requirements.

Why select OpenText as your cloud content management provider

Building on our long history as an industry leader in ECM and content services technology, OpenText offers the industry’s most comprehensive suite of cloud content management platforms and applications. Our roster is fully integrated to provide complete end-to-end cloud solutions, from capture to archiving, as well as specialized, hybrid use cases that meet any organization’s unique needs.

Learn more:

Gartner named OpenText a Leader in its 2020 Magic Quadrant for Content Services Platforms

To find out more about cloud content management solutions from OpenText, visit our website.


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Alison Clarke

Alison is Director, Product Marketing for OpenText Content Suite and Extended ECM. Alison and her team are passionate about helping organizations use content services technologies to distill more value from information, supporting the needs of individuals and teams to improve productivity and strengthen information governance for the organization with content services-enabled solutions.

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