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Thursday, April 19, 2007

BI + ECM = True?

Rich Cohen writes in DM Review:

"The next few years are going to provide a bumpy ride for the IT function at many companies. The rise of unstructured content will require new ways of thinking about how information is used and managed enterprise-wide - indeed it will require a new definition of the term "information." The goal is simple: treat all information - unstructured and structured - as if it is one of the most valuable assets your company possesses. Learn all you can about it, manage it properly, and use it to help grow the company. "

Jacques Surveyer argues why ECM will become a necessity for BI:

"Enterprise content management (ECM) has always been a bit of a wallflower -- acknowledged as important, but emerging slowly and flourishing most in professional and service-oriented firms where collaboration and knowledge management are paramount. But ECM offers a lot that's beyond the capabilities of most business intelligence systems -- the ability to handle semi-structured data in diverse document formats, team collaboration, support for ad hoc working groups, and knowledge management. All are of growing interest in the world of BI."

TDWI uses a similar reasoning when promoting their 2007 TDWI World Conference:

"Business intelligence is a major beneficiary of ECM. As the volume of information in data warehouses and BI systems continues to grow, it becomes increasingly difficult for users to find relevant information and make the right decisions. Traditional BI and analytics are good at telling you the “what” of business performance, but they often leave out the “why.” ECM search capabilities fill in the blanks by making related information in memos, e-mails, and policies findable, reaching further into the heart of a business. "

Dave Kellog gets to wrap up this post:

"So ECM seems to be heading in a new direction. If things evolve similarly in BI, you can expect to see cannabalism (such as Business Objects buying Hyperion) and incursion (such as IBM buying Cognos) in the future. People have speculated about such things for years. If BI continues to evolve in parallel fashion to ECM, then perhaps soon the speculators will be proven right."

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