Thursday, December 29, 2005

Best of Breed Vs Suites 2

A major cautionary when considering and discussing best of breed vs suite applications is that not everyone has the same definition of which is which. For example I often call firms like Documentum & FileNet, best of breed vendors. Yet within the world of ECM they would more often be called suite vendors.

The reason I call them this is that I tend to have a very broad view of information management. To me unstructured data and structured data, along with paper are all media forms of information that all need to be managed. So when I talk about Enterprise Information Management I am refering to all of these broad areas, and a player such as Filenet would be a best of breed vendor, who would compliment an IBM, SAP or Oracle.

To be perfectly honest, I am the one in the wrong terminology wise, and I should be much more careful. But I give this as an example to caution others. Exactly the same thing happens in world of CRM and even more so in very broad ERP situations. One persons suite is anothers best of breed.

Again to be clear, I believe in the 80% rule - I think it makes sense in today's technology market to tie your ship to one of the leading platform approaches IBM, Oracle, Microsoft or Open Source - and for your 20% buy best of breed. In doing so you lower your integration costs considerably, reduce the number of skill sets you need to support, lessen your concern for future incompatibility due to upgrades, and enhance your ability to outsource tasks and processes.

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