They are definitely friends when it comes to the relationship between Office 365 and OpenText's Content Server, the foundational repository and information governance layer for OpenText's Enterprise Content Management (ECM) suite.
The friendship continued this week at Enterprise World 2014 here at the Walt Disney Swan and Dolphin Resort. The 8,200-employee Waterloo, Ontario, ECM provider announced the availability of OpenText Application Governance & Archiving (AGA) 10.7 for Microsoft SharePoint and Microsoft SharePoint Services.
It's all about helping the transition into the cloud -- moving from on-premises instances of Microsoft SharePoint to Microsoft Office 365 in the cloud. Enterprises will also be able to maintain core information governance and compliance processes and integrate content from other enterprise applications such as SAP and Oracle EBS, according to OpenText officials.
On-Prem vs. Cloud
It's been a major point of discussion here in sunny Central Florida -- stay on-premises or jump into the cloud.
At a breakout session Wednesday with Microsoft and OpenText product managers, attendees discussed challenges with Office 365 support for Content Suite offerings. Most of the standing-room only attendees said they were not ready to move Content Server to the cloud but seemed OK with migrating to Office 365 cloud offerings.
This matched conversations we've had with OpenText Content Server users this week. Compliance-heavy companies like medical-device manufacturers and pharmaceutical-based entities aren't exactly ready to drop on-prem and dive into the cloud.
OpenText seems to get that with its "we're a hybrid company," mantra this week, first highlighted Wednesday by CEO Mark Barrenechea and echoed by subsequent executives like Muhi Majzoub, senior vice president of engineering. This charge comes even when OpenText released a major cloud vision through its Core offering.
Doing any migration or upgrade from Content Server in general certainly won't be easy. One user that works directly with pharmaceuticals told CMSWire it took his organization around one year to update to the latest version.
Another, Alaina McKnight, a systems analyst at Jacobs Technology, told us an upgrade on a platform like Content Server is "never easy." It's simply never seamless, she said.
But back to Microsoft. OpenText officials say they want to provide access to core information sources from any device, in any location by extending capabilities of compliance management and integration of ERP systems to Office 365 users.
As companies adopt cloud services like Office 365, Microsoft and OpenText enter the picture by extending the usability of Office 365 and "enabling collaboration with third party ERP systems such as SAP and Oracle," according to Patricia Nagle, vice president of global strategic alliances at OpenText.
OpenText also launched today OpenText Microsoft SharePoint Services (SPS) for Extended ECM for Oracle E-Business Suite. OpenText SPS for Extended ECM for Oracle E-Business Suite provides ERP-associated content management, governance and compliance management capabilities.