Oracle Introduces Enterprise Content Management Suite 11g

Oracle announced the availability of Oracle Enterprise Content Management Suite 11g, intended as a scalable solution that allows an enterprise to engage in image, Web, document and records management. Oracle has kept up with a steady stream of releases throughout 2009 designed to expand the company's reach into the enterprise software stack, as part of the company's larger plan to become the largest and most mission-critical IT systems vendor in the world.

Oracle is announcing the availability of Oracle Enterprise Content Management Suite 11g, a component of Oracle Fusion Middleware that combines a number of the company's backend components, including process and records management, into a single system. The applications in question include Oracle Universal Content Management 11g and Oracle Universal Records Management 11g, unveiled June 8, as well as Oracle and Process Management 11g and Oracle Information Rights Management 11g, which were originally announced in February 2010.

"To maximize content management efficiency, reduce costs and improve security, organizations need a comprehensive enterprise content management solution that is integrated into their business process and fits with the way they work," Andy MacMill, vice president of Product Management for Oracle, wrote in a statement. "With Oracle Enterprise Content Management Suite 11g, we meet those demands while delivering the performance and scalability needed to support the most complex and demanding enterprise content management environments."

Overall, Enterprise Content Management Suite 11g is designed to be a scalable solution that effectively covers image, Web, document and records management. It is, in theory, a one-stop shop: an enterprise's creative department could use some components to manage Web or digital assets, while an accounting or legal department would need its scalable electronic and physical records management system.

To that end, one of its components, Oracle Universal Content Management 11g, allows for open Web content management, which integrates Web content authoring, design and presentation capabilities into corporate Websites; business users have a simplified means of editing and managing their sites. Oracle Universal Records Management 11g allows business users to manage electronic and physical records, improving discover and enhancing the usability with an updated physical records management interface.

With regard to Oracle's corporate strategy, however, perhaps the most important part of Enterprise Content Management Suite 11g is how it integrates with a variety of the company's other products, including Oracle Enterprise Manager 11g and Oracle Database 11g; an increasingly comprehensive stack, with solutions for all facets of business, potentially helps Oracle in its battle against other vendors such as IBM for enterprise customers-if Oracle can persuade those customers that it offers everything they need.

Throughout 2010, Oracle has steadily unveiled new products designed to help manage the various parts of the enterprise stack. On April 22, the company announced Oracle Enterprise Manager 11g, a platform for consolidating various systems management and support tools with an integrated interface.

"Traditional systems management products don't address the complexities of modern data centers," Richard Sarwal, Oracle's senior vice president of Product Development, wrote in a statement preceding that particular announcement. "They create islands of automation but do not provide a holistic, integrated picture of the health of the entire IT stack."

Features of Enterprise Manager 11g include increased support for the management of Fusion Middleware 11g, with provision for large-scale SOA Suite and WebLogic Server environments, as well as Database 11g Release 2. It leverages Oracle's $7.4 billion acquisition of Sun Microsystems, by allowing an IT administrator to manage the life cycle of physical and virtual Sun environments and Solaris Containers.

Oracle's stream of releases seems to play into the company's larger plan to become the largest and most mission-critical IT systems vendor in the world.

"We've already beaten IBM in software ... Now we want to beat them in systems," Oracle CEO and founder Larry Ellison told an audience during a September 2009 appearance at the Churchill Club in San Jose, Calif. "We have a deep interest in the systems business. Great systems vendors ship a hardware-software combination that allows them to be instrumental in the acceleration of the Internet."