ORLANDO, Fla. – Ceiling lights began to flash. A series of thunderous beeps sounding like the most annoying car alarm in the universe blasted.

All this in the middle of OpenText CEO Mark Barrenechea’s keynote in front of hundreds at the 2013 OpenText World Enterprise Information Management Conference in Coquina Hall at the JW Marriott Grand Lakes here.

Barrenechea, though, was sharp, clever, quick and witty in response: Red Oxygen has just gone live, he told the audience.

Power of Information

Of course, OpenText’s five-suite, EIM software solution did, in fact, go live this morning. And though the noise and flashy lights in the conference hall had nothing to do with it, Barrenechea’s response pleased the audience members, for sure, who approved with perhaps the loudest laugh of the morning.

It’s kind of how information management professionals need to be today: quick, responsive, flexible and keeping the customer experience in mind at all times. Enterprise information management platforms must be responsive, too — just like the OpenText CEO’s witty play on the room’s malfunction.

Barrenechea spent most of his keynote promoting the software enterprise EIM platform his company released earlier in the morning, Project Red Oxygen. He also discussed the power of information -- and how now is the time to have structured information management programs in place.

Even Golden Globe- and Emmy Award-winning actor William Shatner, who spoke this morning after Barrenechea, recognizes the power of information. (Even if he joked in a Q&A with Shatner, “What’s it for?” when talking about Red Oxygen).

“Information is invaluable,” Shatner told the audience. “… There’s a balance between creativity and information. Creativity is partly intuition and partly information.”

Corporate Data Rising

So what is Barrenechea seeing out there today? 

Corporate data, he said, is growing at an “incredible rate”; contracts, cases, customer correspondence, invoices, purchase orders.

“And it comes from diverse sources,” Barrenechea said.

information management, OpenText CEO: For Industry, It's Structured Information Management Time #OTEW2013

OpenText CEO Mark Barrenechea. Photo by Dom Nicastro.

The industry is looking to “structure the unstructured” when it comes to the information overload, he said.

“The fact that folks are deploying capabilities to the cloud makes it even more disruptive," and also, there is SaaS to consider, Barrenechea said. “My information is in the same database as someone else. The only things that separate them is a column in the database.”

Mobility is ‘Massive’

Barrenechea said he’s 90 days away from never using his PC again. The last thing he needs to do on his tablet, he said, is author content. Once he does that, he’s saying goodbye to PCs.

“My tablet is a consumptive device,” Barrenechea said, “but now I’m getting pretty proficient in Word, PowerPoint and Tempo Note.”

What’s at middle of this?

“Information and information architectures,” Barrenechea said. “We feel OpenText is in the right place at the right time.”

Message to CIOs: Get Going

In a Forrester report cited by the OpenText CEO, only 13 percent of CIOs said they have a comprehensive information management strategy.

information management, OpenText CEO: For Industry, It's Structured Information Management Time #OTEW2013

That’s far too low, Barrenechea said, and it’s time for CIOs to get a strategy in place. Author Joe Shepley's piece today on CMSWire.com on the information management industry discusses how too often when information management capabilities are deployed, organizations do not understand the effects they have on the bottom line.

“We think Red Oxygen is the platform to begin to build your journey,” he added. “… It’s time to build an architecture and lay down the foundation.”

OpenText Promises Kept

One audience member sees Red Oxygen as having great potential. 

Jackie Winkler of OMERS, a Toronto, ON-based provider that leverages OpenText technologies and manages pensions for provincial municipal employees, caught up with CMSWire.com after Barrenechea’s keynote.

Officials at last year’s OpenText annual conference made promises, Winkler recalled, about the deployment of a solution like Red Oxygen.

“What impresses me the most was the fact that OpenText has clearly delivered on their promises from last year,” Winkler told us. “Everybody makes those promises. A year is a very short period of time, but they delivered on what they said they were going to deliver.”

In concept, the idea of having a five-suite enterprise information management system is terrific, Winkler said, given the abundance of singular solutions.

“But I’d have to see it work, though,” Winkler added about Red Oxygen.

OpenText’s EIM Vision

Barrenechea lay out for the audience his organization’s EIM roadmap and how it sees this space:

  • Unstructured and semi-structured content will live in many information services. We need to recognize that content will live in many sources and you’re going to have many information sources. “We build our technology … to support many environments,” he said.
  • Platforms must create smarter processes, smarter documents and smarter ways to exchange information. It needs better metadata and a better way to search and email with a smarter process with business process management tools.
  • OpenText also sees a layer of applications. It is creating a platform company and an applications company. Case management, Barrenechea said, is much different from contract management.
  • Responsive user experience is crucial today, and state-of-the-art today is HTML5, the CEO said. What does a responsive user experience mean? It’s about deploying user-friendly Websites across all devices that adapts to multiple mobile devices. “It’s really important, and we’ve brought it to life with Red Oxygen,” the CEO said.
  • Analytics are important, too, but will not be available if your enterprise information is fragmented and lives in many sources.

“The core principal … is the developer,” Barrenechea said, “who makes all things possible.”

Red Oxygen Rollout

Barrenechea announced that Red Oxygen will be a series of rollouts, and end users can purchase a la carte if they wish (though we know OpenText sees this solution as all-encompassing).

The schedule is as follows:

  • November: Information Exchange Suite and AppWorks
  • December: Content Suite and Tempo
  • January: Process Suite
  • March: Experience Suite and Discovery Suite

Anything coming after Red Oxygen?

“The next big release of software will be named,” Barrenechea said, before pausing and not divulging a name, “post Red Oxygen.”