Are SMBs Getting Forgotten?

By John Phillips posted 04-12-2012 22:41


One thing that I find a bit of concern when watching technologies being developed and marketed is that Small and Medium sized Businesses (SMBs) are often forgotten with respect to software applications needs. Although we advanced professionals focus on cutting edge technologies, advanced hardware/software solutions, and sophisticated applications that work well in a corporate or large institution environment, the SMB companies rarely have needs for this level of system complexity and cost. They could not care less about Big Data, Open Systems Standards, Automated Classification, Cloud Architectures, and other seeming obsessions of the elite ECM/ERM crowd. What they need is cost effective workflow enabling, document imaging applications, or email archiving solutions that cost something less than the entire projected income of their organization for five years.

Amazingly, there are actually software applications that can provide these capabilities with realistic ROI for SMBs, but I rarely see this segment of the technology marketplace championed at AIIM, ARMA, and other professional conferences. Maybe the income stream is too small for the Big Iron ECM/ERM market players, but I think this will be a growing market segment in the coming years as SMBs are proven to be a stable and reliable part of most national economies. Cloud availability of applications does seem to have a great potential for this segment of the ECM/ERM marketplace, and may be the tipping point where there is more adoption of the benefits of integrated ECM/ERM solutions. But so far, I am not seeing much movement in this arena.

What do you think are the challenges and opportunities for increasing SMB adoption of ECM/ERM applications? Will Cloud based applications be the tipping point or another technology to leverage?

#workflow #ElectronicRecordsManagement #electronicrecords #ContentManagement #ScanningandCapture #EnterpriseContentManagement #imaging