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Content Virtualization White Paper

Content Virtualization: Going from Information Chaos to Productivity Introduction

Digital business is changing the way people work. Cloud, social collaboration, and mobile technologies have transformed the demands and expectations for managing content in the era of digital business. Despite organizations’ best efforts to manage all their enterprise content, the volume and diversity of the content continues to grow. Content is being generated on more devices with more places to store it, both inside and outside the enterprise. Multiple versions of documents and files proliferate throughout an organization, often without means of tracking them, resulting in redundant and outdated information.

E-mail messages are sent with file attachments that are also not tracked and sometimes not properly saved on employees’ devices. Content is increasingly in motion, flowing through processes, from person to person, and from device to device. As enterprises undergo digital transformation, they need a simpler, smarter and virtualized approach to managing their content regardless of where it is stored.


Information Chaos

How organizations create, manage, disseminate and exploit their enterprise content has changed in response to external forces (e.g., emergence of cloud, mobile and social technologies) and internal business drivers (e.g., influence of business, compressed timeframes, increased regulations). The volume of data that organizations create, process and store continues to increase in the era of digital business, with more information being created and disseminated using mobile devices or cloud applications. A survey conducted by the Association for Intelligent Information Management (AIIM) showed, “35% of organizations believe the volume of information and data coming into their organizations will grow more than 5-fold in just the next two years; on average, organizations believe the volume of information will grow by 317%.” Much of that data is contained in unstructured content.

While many organizations have implemented multiple content management solutions, those systems have yet to win over the business users. Enterprise content management has failed to live up to its promise. Enterprise content management has failed to live up to its promise. It has typically been an IT driven, top down, strategy and solution that failed to take into consideration the user experience and user behavior. Specially, solutions

  • Force users to use propriety interfaces that are often cumbersome and disconnected from the business applications they use every day
  • Depend on users to tag and classify content.
  • Rely on users to save content into a specific repository and in the appropriate folder or location

Many users continue to rely on e-mail for sharing documents and their personal hard drives or file shares for storing them. Content management applications are often isolated silos — and the chaos is only getting worse as application-specific tools and cloud-based repositories and
collaboration applications become more serious alternatives driven by the business buyer. As content becomes more fluid and temporal, CIOs and executives must focus more on understanding how and where content is used and by whom to improve information productivity. In the digital business era, it is imperative that organizations understand the lifecycle and value of digital content as well as the privacy and security risks that mismanagement of the content may present.


This information chaos means increased risk from a security and governance perspective.

  • Redundant, obsolete, and trivial (ROT) data is not handled
  • Difficult to prevent exposing sensitive data like Personally Identifiable Information (PII)
  • No single definitive and unaltered final document or record
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