For those of you unfamiliar with Open Text, they are an SAP Co-Innovation Partner (like Syclo and RIM). They are an enterprise software company and leader in ECM (enterprise content management). Open Text brings two decades of expertise and supports millions of users in 114 countries. They are focused on helping organizations capture and preserve corporate memory, increase brand equity, automate processes, mitigate risk, manage compliance and improve competitiveness. With that said, they are also developing a mobile enterprise software application called Open Text Everywhere.
In a video comments series that I did post-Sapphire this year, I shared my interest and enthusiasm for the new category of mobile applications I was introduced to by Open Text. It was my first exposure to mobile ECM (enterprise content management).
I had the privelege of recently interviewing Micah Kalen with Open Text Product Marketing about their mobility solutions.
Open Text is one of those companies along with RIM and Sybase that is located in Waterloo, Canada. I have had the opportunity of spending time in the Waterloo area while meeting with the Sybase product teams and enjoyed my visits.
Before we continue, let me explain how this interview worked. Micah was talking passionately and quickly and I was taking notes as fast as I could. The quotes are not exact. They are the answers that I wrote down in my notes, but are not his exact words. So Micah, let me know if I wrote something down wrong!
Kevin: Micah, what mobile device do you carry?
Micah: Three devices. An iPad, iPhone and a Blackberry. I use the Blackberry for work and the iPhone and iPad because I love it.
Kevin: Wow! Why three devices?
Micah: Part of my job is to ensure we provide a good user experience across multiple platforms.
Kevin: Tell us about Open Text Everywhere, your new mobility solution.
Micah: It supports our ECM (enterprise content management) solution and mobilizes existing SAP workflows. It is ECM and SAP workflow focused and one of the first solutions you will see is a mobilized Vendor Invoice Management system. This has a very strong ROI. Other ROIs come from more people utilizing current SAP systems and assets through mobile devices. These can offer significant productivity gains that offer more value horizontally across all departments. We are extending mobility beyond email, to the ECM. This is unique and has great value.
Note: The SAP Vendor Invoice Management system is a very powerful solution that Open Text developed and SAP now sells. It enables the invoice receiver to manage the flow of inbound invoices and quickly route them through the invoice approval process and accounts payable system. This is particularly important when suppliers offer early payment discounts that can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. The person who approves invoices needs to be able to be contacted quickly even if there are travelling. This is where mobile solutions come in. For more on this topic read here.
Micah: We support mobilizing approval processes, adding documents from mobile devices to the ECM, adding links and accessing content on the content server from mobile devices.
Kevin: What is your target audience with Open Text Everywhere?
Micah: Current Open Text and SAP customers. Also, mobility is not just for people that travel externally. Internal employees are mobile. They may be on the same campus but rarely at their desk. This is an important market. Open Text wants to help mobilize the internal and external mobile employees. We want to provide, "Meaningful Mobility or Actionable Mobility."
Kevin: Tell us more about Open Text Everywhere.
Micah: We are mobilizing our ECM. Workflows can be exposed and consumed on the mobile device. Workflows that are developed on the ECM can be viewed and mobilized so that mobile devices can be participants in the workflow process.
I want to thank Micah for taking the time to share Open Text Everywhere with our readers. The more I ponder what can be done by mobilizing the ECM and SAP workflow systems, the more potential I can quickly recognize for adding value to current SAP investments.
Open Text is a co-innovation partner of SAP. There are a handfull of other companies that are also co-innovation partners including RIM, Sybase (now acquired by SAP) and Syclo. When I spoke to Jon Schmidt of Syclo a while back about the meaning of being a co-innovation partner, he explained that SAP and Syclo jointly develop a mobility roadmap in defined business processes and work together to develop and deliver these solutions to their customers. You can read more about the co-innovation partnership here.
Read more articles in the Mobile Expert Interview Series here.
Kevin Benedict, SAP Mentor, SAP Top Contributor, Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst
Phone +1 208-991-4410
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Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.