Open Text, the largest independent provider of enterprise content management (ECM) software and solutions, has announced Livelink ECM 10, the next major release of its ECM offering. Open Text solutions are available in South Africa through IT infrastructure and solutions provider, Datacentrix.

“Livelink ECM 10 is a major evolutionary step that lets customers implement a true enterprise-wide content management strategy, allowing them to preserve and protect intellectual capital, leverage business content across all applications and effectively address governance and regulatory compliance requirements, ultimately leading to Enterprise Transparency,” says Rob Shaw, product manager for Open Text at Datacentrix.
Enterprise Transparency reflects the evolution of content management from simply tracking and controlling information to leveraging it for business advantage – setting it in action to drive business processes, create content-centric business applications, bridge structured and unstructured content repositories and unleash information workers to make better, faster decisions based on a holistic, centralised view of business content.
"Users are frustrated by the lack of integration between their line-of-business applications and personal productivity tools; enterprise processes are fragmented between these two worlds.” Moreover, “The ability to keep users in one consistent and productive environment will enable companies to realise additional productivity. It can also enable consistent and coherent support for enterprise processes as they extend between activities supported in these previously distinct  environments,” writes Mark Gilbert, research vice-president at Gartner, in a research report entitled “Planning for 2010: Key Issues for Business Application and Workplace Productivity Systems Integration, April 7, 2006.”
Most enterprises today treat content management as a separate function from such enterprise applications as finance, customer relationship management or supply chain planning. As a result, there is almost no linkage between information stored in e-mail or document archives and enterprise applications. This, in turn, creates both compliance risks and significant inefficiencies for workers. Livelink ECM 10 is designed from the ground up to effectively address these challenges.
“Increasingly, organisations are looking to implement a comprehensive strategy to control and manage content from all corners of the enterprise,” says Shaw.
“Livelink ECM 10 addresses the reality of today’s distributed, diverse and complex enterprise computing landscape. Working closely with major enterprise infrastructure and applications providers SAP, Microsoft and Oracle, Open Text is delivering on the promise of an ECM offering that directly controls content but is also knitted into the over-all enterprise architecture. This enables content management to evolve from simply tracking and controlling information to leveraging it for business advantage.”
Livelink ECM 10 builds on the strong Livelink ECM foundation and provides enterprise content management capabilities. Some of what’s new in Livelink ECM 10 is available immediately, with the rest being rolled out in 2007. New features in Livelink ECM 10 include:
* Enterprise Library Services: In Livelink ECM 10, seamlessly integrated archival, metadata management, enterprise records management and search capabilities are exposed as Enterprise Library Services, providing organisations with the ability to effectively implement enterprisewide retention strategies. In addition to managing content stored in Livelink ECM repositories, Livelink ECM 10 also provides the ability to manage the metadata and lifecycle of content stored in enterprise applications from vendors such as Microsoft, SAP and Oracle, as well as business content stored in Microsoft SharePoint, e-mail, file systems and other
repositories.
* Bridging Business Content with Enterprise Applications: Livelink ECM 10 offers new features that allow users to seamlessly access business content in ERP systems, such as customer information or purchase order documents, from their familiar Microsoft Outlook interface. This allows organisations to more effectively leverage content and metadata investments across applications and the organisation and provides a unified view of structured and unstructured business content that can lead to significant productivity gains and better decision-making.
* Flexibility for Provisioning Basic Content Services: Livelink ECM 10 provides organisations with the flexibility to build and deploy solutions on any Basic Content Services offering such as Microsoft SharePoint, while managing the enterprise-wide retention of the mission-critical business content with Enterprise Library  Services.
* Emphasis on User Experience: In addition to Livelink ECM’s web-based user interface, Livelink ECM 10 will feature a new rich client interface, providing seamless access to business content from within leading Microsoft desktop applications including Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Office and Microsoft Explorer, significantly reducing training requirements and maximising user productivity.
* New Web Services APIs: Livelink ECM 10 will provide published Web Services APIs for Enterprise Library Services and Livelink Content Services, allowing customers and partners to easily integrate Livelink ECM 10 capabilities with enterprise applications, customise the user experience and enable organisations to build content-centric applications that leverage business content to its full potential.
* Best Solutions Enablement Platform: Livelink ECM 10, with its underlying Enterprise Library Services and Web Services APIs, will be the best ECM offering to enable organisations to deploy content-enabled applications with great ease and speed, while ensuring the longevity of the business content.