Upheaval in document management market: Datamonitor

Significant upheaval is inevitable in the documents and records management market, according to analyst house Datamonitor.

It expects a round of acquisitions to take place in the market, and for new companies to emerge, as documents management becomes “one of the fastest growing markets in the enterprise technology space.”

According to its report ‘Decision matrix: selecting a documents and records management vendor’, the explosion of content that is generated within enterprises is driving demand.

“After a spate of consolidation in the last three to four years, the documents and records management market is now in the midst of post-consolidation blues,” said Vamshi Mokshagundam, analyst at Datamonitor and author of the report. “Most leading vendors sport multiple platforms and product lines within their portfolios and are yet to come to terms with unified product strategies.”

Document management software has traditionally been employed for compliance and retention purposes, Datamonitor said, but it is evolving to address the larger content management needs of firms. Demand is increasing alongside employee collaboration through multiple channels such as shared documents and workspaces, features such as collaborative document and email frameworks, and support for instant messaging environments.

Also figuring high on the document and records technology integration list are workflow and business process management capabilities such as business rules engine, process modelling and role support, Datamonitor said.

But firms are struggling to understand the many different software products in the marketplace, because much of the technology offers similar benefits. It said firms were moving to use service providers to help them make these decisions.

Recently, Morse entered the market through its acquisition of Diagonal Solutions, and HP acquired Australia-based Tower Software, a document management provider.

The market for content services such as document capture and processing is also experiencing accelerated growth, Datamonitor said. Consequently, the value proposition for services vendors such as Xerox and Canon in entering the document management applications space is on the up. Datamonitor believes this trend is set to continue, with many independent vendors being likely targets for acquisition in the near term.

It said niche players would enter the market. But, for the time being, Datamonitor expects firms such as EMC and IBM will remain “the top choices” for IT decision makers.

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