RIP Documentum!

Too hasty you say? But seriously though, what are the real alternatives?

First a disclosure. I’ve been away from blogging for few years to pursue another passion of mine which effectively consumed every waking moment outside my work. I enrolled in film school and here’s the trailer of my film for the curious minds.

When the speculation about Dell’s consideration to acquire EMC hit the papers, it felt like a rude awakening from my hibernation. Not that the purchase might be a bad idea, but what about Documentum, which barely makes a dent in EMC’s revenue (yep… Documentum is all I care). I especially liked how Word Of Pie portrayed the scene: “Documentum is likely something that was mentioned in a laundry list of ‘Wait, that’s not all!’ items that Dell doesn’t care about.” Right on the money Mr.Hart!

Remember when Filenet thought it was invincible and Documentum pulled the rug from under? I am beginning to wonder if its come a full circle. On the other hand, Alfresco seems to be maneuvering carefully to not just win clients but to win their loyalty as well (I was very pleased to learn about their “win-back” clause). TSG has a compelling argument on how SAP would be a worthy fit for Documentum while it’s not necessarily a good acquisition target for Microsoft, Oracle and especially IBM.

If I may be so bold, I was bored to death with EMC constantly repackaging and selling the same suite of products year after year. Then came xCP 2.0 — after a long time, I was genuinely excited about their product, again! They made some bold decisions, best of which is throwing away WDK and deciding to build a meaningful IDE that encapsulates all the related components. Don’t get me wrong, WDK has phenomenal potential to extend and customize but unfortunately it offered primitive web experience for the users. Just when I thought Documentum might get it’s groove back, Dell shows up at the doorstep.

Documentum holds enormous potential to redefine itself as a leader. However with the advent of the nimbler startups in ECM space and big data flexing it’s muscle, I am beginning to wonder if this could become the moment which would be remembered as the trigger which disrupted the ECM space in a big way.

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