3 Misperceptions about Content Management and FinTech

Suren Naidoo

Presales Director of Worldwide Functional Programs. Follow @Suren_Naidoo

One particular section of my Momentum at EMC World presentation seems to have deeply resonated with the audience – how our perceptions can hold back progress.  In many institutions and enterprises, I3 Misperceptions have noticed a way of thinking that, unless swiftly altered, might bring down the greatest of brands or the largest of banks. Much of it centers around the FinTech phenomena, but it is also intertwined with recent trends toward evolving IT to become more business-centric.

Here are three misconceptions of digital transformation that I encounter across the banking sector, and how one might think differently to carve out a lucrative future:

1 – It is just a new tech revolution

For any technology to be successful, it needs to begin with addressing business requirements. Digital transformation may involve technologies to implement upon a strategy, but first it is about creating new business models. This means adapting to new or different needs of your customers – especially customer segments you expect to increase in volume or revenue percentage. (As I noted in my presentation, Millennials are key to future growth).

Start to identify new business opportunities by breaking down your value chain and creating greater customer pools and engagements. Only after that is clear, begin finding innovative and/or reliable technologies to implement your plan.

2 – It’s just a new way to introduce mobile channels to existing platforms — in other words, just a new way to do old things!

Certainly mobile users are important, and the ability to serve functionality through devices is a new baseline (“mobile first”). But this misses the bigger opportunity mentioned in the first misperception above — that transformation is about you finding new ways to do new things.

In today’s app-centric, fast-moving, time-sensitive world, customers evaluate you against their latest experience. This may not be another bank providing a mortgage approval in two weeks. It may, in fact, be an Alibaba or PayPal offering lines of credit at the touch of a button. They may have powerful capabilities to offer these services because they already eliminated customer charges and banking branch costs when they crafted their business model to begin with.

Mobile functionality is important, but again, only after you understand customer segments and your role in the value chain.

3 – It’s a threat against our core business and we need to protect against it

As with any market disruptive activity, the effects are not all negative or all positive. Yes, customer-centric FinTech start-ups can quickly tear down your revenue streams. But simply defending against such competitors can miss your grand opportunity to reinvent your business for the better.

Specifically, digital transformation can open up new cost efficiencies. As you reposition yourself in your customer’s value chain, consider how to implement:

  • Automated processes to expedite customer services while reducing staffing and overhead costs (how about that mortgage approval process?)
  • Third party service plug-ins or partnerships that negate the need to perform in house development and testing, while helping retain your most lucrative customers or deliver exciting innovations
  • Infrastructure cost reduction, perhaps by moving some applications to a cloud model or decommissioning legacy apps and migrating data to regulatory-compliant systems

Looking at digital transformation as a way to catalyze your content management efforts is a step in the right direction. It is precisely this movement to the digital transformation wave that offers an opportunity to change your relationship with customers and the technologies that solidify that relationship.

How have you changed your thinking about digital transformation? What were misperceptions you had to overcome to make progress? Share below.

Digital Transformation in Training and Change Management

Bill Sawyer

Worldwide Education Leader for the Enterprise Content Division, EMC

Latest posts by Bill Sawyer (see all)

As software moves to the cloud, as technology accelerates the pace of change yet again, as new solutions to old problems are implemented, there is still one critical factor that has changed very little, and because of this can disappear into the background … the user. Humans, despite cultural tags like millennials or baby boomers, are surprisingly similar. We like those tags for noting cultural differences, but the humans along with those tags continue to prove, research study after research study, to share a lot of similarities.

Education-2With software in the cloud, complexity is being moved out of the data centers and out of the customer’s business, but it is having an increasing impact on the user community. In the older on-premise software model, it was possible for end-user training and change management to slowly evolve over time. Internal knowledge resources would be developed, circulated, and continuously improved. But modern on-premise and cloud-based models do not allow for this slow evolution, distribution, and passing of knowledge. Even with on-premise solutions, the complexity of the software and the security threats inherent in the modern internet require a nearly constant stream of updates. The major difference between modern on-premise and cloud-based software is whose technical team is applying the updates, not whether or not the updates are being done.

All of this creates uncertainty in the end-user communities. The enterprise applications that they depend upon to do their jobs are often changing right out from under them. This requires a dramatic rethinking of training and change management. We are facing the same challenges for ECD Education Services.

One major consideration is the need to evolve from a training as an event to training as a process mindset. A critical component to any learning is repetition. In the slower models, repetition was built into the very work that users did on a daily basis. They didn’t really consider repeating training, because by the time the next upgrade was due, the system would be dramatically different. It simply isn’t so. Training is no longer the component that could be pulled from the plan without significant risk. Training is becoming a cost of doing business.

It is good to remember the meme, “CFO: What happens if we train people and they leave? CEO: Yeah, but what happens if we don’t train people and they stay?”

Do you engage in regular training, or encourage your team to continuously add to their skill sets? Share comments below.

Better Together: EMC LEAP Applications working with existing ECD Systems

Chris Dyde

Chief Architect for EMC ECD Services and the world-wide lead for our Migration Practice

No-one who attended EMC World and saw Rohit’s keynote presentation (including the very compelling live demo of the new EMC LEAP applications), or perhaps had a chance to review some of the recordings could fail to be impressed by the intuitive User Experiences on display. LEAP applications, tailored to specific activities, enable users to be so much more productive than wide-ranging, generic applications that offer too many capabilities and only make tasks more complex.

All of the LEAP applications – whether it is the document exchange and workflow of COURIER, the intelligent image capture of SNAP, the seamless task approval of EXPRESS, or the rich collaboration of CONCERT – represent a change to a user-focused experience by using technology, rather than putting technology first. But how can the modern organization– with several years of IT development in many directions and a broad mix of technology – start to make the transition to leveraging the opportunities presented by products like LEAP?

The transition to cloud and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) will be an evolution, not a revolution. IT security experts have reservations about the cloud that may only be assuaged with experience. And, many software systems are sticky and will take an effort to dislodge from their position at the heart of many organizations. The first step to experiencing what can be achieved in the cloud is to use the LEAP applications in conjunction with existing ECD systems – they are BETTER TOGETHER.Better Together-May Recap Blog

COURIER provides excellent, easy-to-use, capabilities for document exchange with an outstanding User Experience. COURIER is also providing APIs to enable the system to be integrated with existing ECD content management systems, either on-premises or in the cloud. For example: triggering a document exchange based on the creation of a loan application in the organization’s loan management system, or archiving documents exchanged for the process into an archive system for future reference. As these APIs are expanded and extended, integrators will be able to access all of the rich features of COURIER, for example, initiating an exchange with documents from inside the enterprise, or recording comments from reviewers in an audit trail.

SNAP already provides standardized FTP and CMIS interfaces for release of content into a content management system located on-premises, or in the cloud. These standards provide basic data interchange capability, and will be enhanced down the line with an API that will expose more functionality –for example to trigger workflows when files are uploaded, or to provide rich support for indexing in SNAP itself.

Already integrated with Documentum D2, EXPRESS provides not only review and approval from anywhere via mobile device, but also: Document browsing, searching, favorites, and some offline capability for the organization’s content management system. In the future, EXPRESS will be able to interact with existing ECD systems, making it even more relevant for our customers.

The capabilities of CONCERT will provide customers the most value once they can be integrated with the organization’s content management systems. APIs will enable the collaboration to be backed up by secure archiving, audit trail history and robust access control.

While the LEAP apps give customers many benefits of cloud architecture without the need for migration, in Fall 2016, EMC intends to open up the LEAP platform, the rock on which LEAP applications are built, by providing APIs to directly access platform services. I expect to see an explosion of development where EMC, partners, and customers alike seek to leverage the cloud in a more open paradigm to build business solutions with rich user experiences. At this point, we will also see a demand for migration to the cloud, with data leaving on-premise systems and moving full-time into the cloud environment.


Our dedicated Migration and LEAP Practices can help you make your applications work better together. Contact us at: ContactECDServices@emc.com or contact your local EMC representative.


Laying a Strong Foundation for Major Capital Projects

Katherine Granat

Director, Global Partner Marketing. Responsible for global ECD partner programs, marketing, and enablement initiatives to drive mutual success for ECD and its robust and experienced partner ecosystem. Follow @KatherineGranat

Major capital projects, like factories, oil rigs, dams, and energy plants, are complex endeavors that typically span years, even decades. Because these assets require enormous investment over long periods of time, companies in industries such as oil & gas or utilities need tools to help them accurately plan and manage capital projects.Digital Enterprise

Digital technology has revolutionized the construction, maintenance, and ultimately the decommissioning of a major asset. Digital tools enable hundreds of people to collaborate fluidly, while working thousands of miles apart. Today, ECM and other systems are used to manage millions of documents related to any major asset, from architectural renderings and 3D computer-generated models to budget spreadsheets and maintenance manuals.

EMC’s Sean Baird points out how digital asset management allows those responsible for a capital project to “more effectively use asset information, data, and analytics to predict asset performance, identify changing conditions, and evaluate investment options.”

It does make you wonder how these projects – and all the information associated with them – were managed in the days before computers sat on every desk.

Of course, modern facilities are so much more complex than in the past, and many of today’s capital projects are only possible because of software from companies EMC and its partner AVEVA.

Rebecca Ward, Vice President, Strategic Partners at AVEVA (LSE: AVV), was kind enough to give us a few minutes recently to help us understand how Connected Decision Making—a bi-directional integration of the AVEVA NET information management solution with EMC Energy & Engineering solutions—assists project teams in the day-to-day management of major capital projects. The EMC and AVEVA integrated solution provides cross-organizational teams with secure access to engineering data, architectural drawings, and other (more…)

In Energy, It’s Time to Transform Digitally

Sean Baird

Leads Energy and Engineering Industry solution marketing and market development for EMC’s Enterprise Content Division. Follow @sean_baird

Several weeks ago, we explored three key ways that Energy companies are able to take advantage of technologies to transform themselves digitally. For this entry, let’s explore one of these areas in more detail.

Digital Asset Management enables organizations to more effectively use asset information, data, and analytics to predict asset performance, identify changing conditions, and evaluate investment options. By creating a complete, 360 view of all asset information, an organization can better understand how an asset is performing, gain more detailed insight into increase its efficiency through predictive maintenance, and ensure more accurate operations and maintenance of the asset.

But why now? What is happening today that is driving organizations to invest in better ways of managing asset information? Let’s look more closely at three key drivers:

Holding on to Knowledge

experienceThe reality today is that workforce disruptions are draining organizations of key subject matter experts. In the oil and gas industry, the lower price of oil is driving many organizations to reduce their workforces but across the energy industry, experienced workers are approaching – or surpassing – their retirement.

With this expertise leaving your organization, it’s more critical than ever to make sure that you aren’t reliable on individuals to operate your plant. By creating a single source for all of your asset information, your teams will rely upon these reliable systems rather than “the old guy” to get as-built specs and engineering drawings or to understand the latest procedures.

This allows you to not only insure that your information survives the next retirement announcement but also improve reliability in the process.

Timing is Everything

time to tranformBecause of today’s lower oil prices, most oil and gas companies are reducing capital investment. This actually gives many of these companies the opportunity to take a breath and invest in improving their operational efficiencies. In fact, we see a large number of organizations across the energy industries investing in Operational Excellence programs.

While the benefits of operational excellence are very well understood, the reality is that when profits are high and opportunity is abundant, organizations quite understandably focus on taking advantage of these opportunities. As long as operational inefficiencies don’t impact the bottom line, there just isn’t the time or bandwidth to invest in improving productivity. But as profit margins narrow and investment slows down, priorities can finally shift to running the business better and focusing on digital transformation.

Transform the Bottom Line

transform profitsIn the energy industry, shrinking margins driven by competition and new sources of energy are forcing an increased focus on improving operational efficiency. While loose operational procedures may still result in profitability when market conditions are good, today’s lower prices and increased competition mean that absorbing sloppy maintenance and dealing with unplanned downtimes is simply not sustainable.

To maintain profitability in these market conditions, organizations must look more closely at their operating costs and at a minimum, focus on driving results in two areas:

  • Improving accuracy and timeliness of operational and maintenance procedures to improve plant productivity and reduce unplanned downtime.
  • Ensuring consistent plant operations to safeguard against safety incidents and compliance violations.

We will continue this discussion in the coming weeks, looking at steps that energy companies can take to transform themselves digitally and improve their operational excellence in the process. Where are you at with your digital transformation journey? Let’s discuss it here.


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