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SAP to Sell EMC-Documentum, Finally!

This week was EMC’s 1st Sales Kickoff for CM&A in five years. It was a great week with some interesting news. While one bit of news got a lion’s share of the attention it was our announcement with SAP that really grabbed mine. SAP has been around since the 70’s and with all that history you would think that Documentum would have worked with them. Well, after almost 20 years in existence, Documentum finally starts to work with SAP.

I know, I know. Documentum has had a productized integration with SAP for over ten years. I am actually very familiar with it. In fact my first spin through the partner realm I was responsible for that product integration, along with PeopleSoft and Siebel. It was a great piece of code. It even had a college tie-in where students at Chico State had the opportunity to take a quarter long sessions on the topic in their SAP program. But code does not make a product; you need support and, more importantly, sales to finish the whole product story.

Documentum and SAP
So this week’s announce by SAP, yes someone from SAP said it in their own words, that it would be reselling Documentum into two markets was great news. Building the relationship had to have been a miraculous undertaking. Think of it. Every Documentum pitch include the words unstructured, ad-hoc, and flexible. And well, SAP is not.  So it’s not shocking that getting these two sides to talk has taken years. But now they have.

It was announced that SAP sales force would be selling EMC-CM&A products to their finance and insurance verticals. The solutions will be focused on the areas of broker statements, automated banking sales, automated loan operations, and document creation and information inbox for insurance claims. The financial market is typically not thought of as one of Documentum’s strongest. Yes, there are a lot of customers but honestly no ECM vendor has really penetrated that market like pharmaceuticals, aerospace, or legal have been.  But both Captiva and Document Sciences have been very strong in those markets.

What about Open Text and SAP?
But don’t forget that SAP and Open Text have a strong history and it has just recently been refreshed.  Open Text unified strategy looks at the SAP platform as a whole, whereas EMC Documentum’s focus is on Captiva and Document Sciences “book-ending” the content cycle.  And fortunately both products work with Open Text as well as Documentum and FileNet for that matter.  This means that even if a vendor has deployed Open Text as their content backbone with SAP they can still take advantage of capture and customer communications from EMC Documentum.

New Future for Documentum Regionals
Probably the best news here comes to the regional systems integrators. Major systems integrators do not bet on markets, so this leaves the integration opportunities to nimble regional systems integrators and maybe even new specialty shops. I would be surprised if there were more than a dozen people that really understand BOTH SAP and Documentum at guru status. This could mean a boom to the regional integrators that gamble on building a practice. So for all of you running regionals who have asked me where to focus, my thinking is once this relationship gets firing on all cylinders this will be the place to be.

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