auraportal_logo_2011.jpg While many business process management systems contain to some degree or other content management capabilities, the release of a content management module from AuraPortal (news, site) offers enterprises content management capabilities that can be monitored and controlled from the core web-based BPM platform.

While we have seen over the past year how a number of BPM providers have been steadily building up the content management capabilities of their principal suites, this is the first time, AuraPortal says, that the content management module is a separate but integrated module, giving it a flexibility that it might not have otherwise.

AuraPortal’s Content Management Module

With this, AuraPortal can offer companies a list of enterprise applications that includes document management, customer relationship management, business rules software and, of course, BPM.

As a result, enterprises will be able to deploy the software they need under one umbrella, while the content module offers them the ability to customize content-centric tasks that can then be automated through the BPM module.
It will also be able to monitor content activity and how that content behaves -- not just in the BPM module where it is being used to create processes, but also how that content is being used and applied in the other modules.

AuraPortal, Module Integration

The starting point for this, says Pablo Trilles, AuraPortal vice president, was the idea to create a system with an integrated document management and content management system so enterprises would not have to go to other vendors or products to flesh out their systems.

Even in the best-case scenarios, the use of third-party vendors offers integratable solutions that are considerably less effective than one system from one vendor, he says.

While there are some obvious reasons for integrating everything, the principal use for this, at least initially, will be to update and maintain websites, where content is accumulated, assessed, approved and published using pre-established processes designed within the system.
And AuraPortal can work with any content, the company says. Some of the content mentioned in this respect includes news, articles, documents, digital content and videos.
In creating the processes, it can also manage the content at all stages in the content lifecycle including creation and capture, systems security, content flow, access and version control.

Content Management, BPM

While the concept and realization of the content management module in itself is interesting, its place in the current market is also worth noting.

The idea of an integrated content and document management system with a BPM suite has been around for a while, but, as yet, most companies have concentrated on developing the capabilities of an existing system rather than introducing a new element that could manage all content at all levels.

This is because, until now, from the point of view of an ECM vendor, content is managed as part of the workflow and most vendors have some level of BPM built into the system themselves.
On the other hand, BPM vendors have focused on the creation of processes and how those processes work, and have not in general paid too much attention to the management of content.
However, things change. Content overload is now the rule rather than the exception, and many have started playing around with the idea of content management modules per se rather than as something tacked onto an existing enterprise software package.
Only recently, for example, Alfresco offered the Activiti 5.0 BPM suite on general release and is the culmination of its plans to offer integrated BPM, while in April last year Gartner (news, site) identified document and content interaction as one of the elements needed for a company to make onto the "cool" vendors list.
AuraPortal is a vendor that might have been considered for that list had it had the content module then, but the new list should be coming out soon and it might make it this time, especially as it has already made it into the "Visionairy" Quadrant in the BPM Magic Quadrant the year before last.