OpenText Enterprise World Europe 2019: Cloud, Low-Code and Documentum


From 12 to 14 March an international ACOLAD team of 7 headed to Vienna, Austria’s capital. Not to take a waltz or treat ourselves to Sachertorte and coffee, but to shine at OpenText’s first ever Enterprise World event on European soil. The event attracted more than 1300 attendees who could learn all about OpenText’s strategy in 2 days packed with sessions.

Curious about how OpenText technologies are defining the future of enterprise content? We picked up the key conference takeaways and major themes OpenText is focusing on for your recap.

Any cloud will do

Cloud is obviously a priority theme for all software vendors these days, and OpenText’s cloud strategy is clearly about giving customers a choice. In essence, three application hosting models are available:

1 - Private cloud hosting

Customers who prefer to run their document management platform (Documentum or OpenText Content Server) in their own private cloud will keep this option. Good news is that it will become much easier to manage these deployments as OpenText is actively containerizing all applications, including the Documentum stack. So, based on Docker containers and Kubernetes orchestration, the complexity of running your document management platform on-premise will be dramatically reduced.

2 - Managed hosting and SaaS

A second option is running your document management infrastructure as a managed service on the OpenText Cloud Platform. This is an area where OpenText is heavily investing and innovating. On the one hand, they are expanding their SaaS offering and will have specific solutions such as Core, People Center and Contract Center available as a service. On the other hand, more horizontal platforms and services, such as the Documentum Platform, will be made available as a managed service within the OpenText Cloud.

The most ambitious goal in the SaaS area is OT2, OpenText’s next-generation EIM-as-a Service. OT2 brings together micro-services for content collaboration, security, process automation and analytics. Customers will then have the opportunity to plug these micro-services, such as search or format transformation, to expand their applications in a hybrid setup. A first developer preview for OT2 is expected to be available by the end of this year.

3 - Public cloud hosting

Finally, there’s of course the so-called public cloud hyperscalers that many customers are already standardizing on. Given the containerization efforts described above and OpenText’s certifications for cloud storage, running your document management platforms on public cloud (Microsoft Azure, AWS, Google Cloud Platform) will also get full support by the end of 2019.

Hosting options for OpenText-based document management platforms

Hosting options for OpenText-based document management platforms

OpenText AppWorks: the new EIM poster child

A technology vendor event always gives some good insight into which products will get most attention in the near future. Within the OpenText Enterprise Information Management (EIM) realm, that will undoubtedly be AppWorks. Riding the waves of low-code development and agility, AppWorks allows customers to rapidly develop – or better configure - full-blown process- and case-based applications. The configuration options are very impressive:

  • On the user interface layer, it is a matter of dragging and dropping components to set up lists, forms, action bars, etc. On top of that, all user interface components are responsive by design, and thus available for mobile use.
  • On the business/functional layer, the analyst can configure the domain model, business rules, workflows, lifecycles, audit history, etc. Note that AppWorks also boasts compliance with modelling standards such as CMMN for case management and BPMN for processes.
  • Finally, on the integration/data layer AppWorks obviously integrates seamlessly with the OpenText stack of products (Documentum, Core, Magellan), but also has connectors for major enterprise platforms such as SAP and Salesforce. This integration capability is crucial for creating 360° views on case data and documents, which are key in modern case management applications.

OpenText AppWorks for low-code application configuration

OpenText AppWorks for low-code application configuration

Continuing the 'better together' strategy

A final point that struck me was the continued strategy of integrating Documentum and OpenText services. Ever since OpenText’s Documentum acquisition beginning of 2017, a lot of ink has been spilled on the future of Documentum. OpenText always kept the credo of a ‘better together strategy’, trying to integrate the best parts of both solutions; and based on the developments over the past 2 years, this is what is actually happening. What we really love is their vision of federated compliance, through which it will be possible to manage retention policies and legal holds across Documentum and InfoArchive, resulting in a real multi-tier digital archive setup.

Enteprise Content Management powered by OpenText technologies

Enteprise Content Management powered by OpenText technologies

A good example is the standardization of certain components throughout the complete OpenText stack. For example, in the user interface layer we see that D2 will now move towards the Smart UI framework, a front-end framework that is generally adopted within OpenText. Or think about the introduction of Brava for native document viewing within the Documentum products. The other way round, OpenText has now clearly adopted Captiva and InfoArchive, two original EMC ECD products, as the core products for data capture and digital archiving respectively.

So where many people doubted the willingness of OpenText to invest in 2 document management platforms - Content Server and Documentum – it actually does so in a very smart way, namely by standardizing on the best components without giving up on the platforms themselves.