Stop thinking in silos

By Andreas Engel posted 03-31-2011 04:52


In today’s discussion on the future of the ECM industry, terms like ‘Systems of Records’ versa ‘Systems of Engagement’ are often discussed. The first one describing the old world/focus ECM delivered on and the later being the future promise which ECM will deliver on starting from today. While ‘System of Engagements’ are exactly what companies need to implement to improve collaboration, productivity and engagement of their employees to become more successful on what they are doing, I believe that companies and the ECM industry need a more radical shift in their thinking in order to improve IT ‘s contributions to companies overall business success in the market: IT needs to stop thinking in silos.

Thinking in silos creates silo – silos of information. System of engagement will lead easily to more silos of information if thinking in – engagement - silos is applied.

While the discussion about departmental solutions/repositories versa Enterprise solutions/repositories are familiar in the ECM community, there is even a deeper chasm to be discussed and crossed. Systems providing ECM functionality –for unstructured data - and operational systems in areas like  Enterprise Resource Planning, Customer Relations Management, Supply Chain Management and other – for structured data -  are treated as different silos in IT, often responsibilities for ECM systems and ‘ERP’ systems are in different groups. Business processes don't care about these silos, these silos only where created due to different technolgies for structured and unstrucutred data, beeing the cause of many compliance, data qaulity, data integration  and user productivity issues companies facing today.  

My advice:

  • ERP systems need to be thought of as ERCP systems: Enterprise Resource and Content  Planning systems.
  • CRM systems need to be thought of as CRCM systems: Customer Resource and Content Management
  • SRM systems need to be thought of as SRCM systems: Supplier Resource and Content Management
  • ‘Systems of Engagement’ need to be thought of as integrated part of ‘Systems of Records’ in the Enterprises.

Stop thinking in silos is the start to get the ECM puzzle solved and not to generate more silos with content which is hard to control and leverage.


Rem.: This blog is my personal opinion.

#ERP #ElectronicRecordsManagement #systemsofengagement #SCM #socialmedia #systemsofrecords