As organziations execute their ECM strategies, they are finding that they are implememting multiple ECM solutions. Typically, we are seeing that SharePoint being used for managing collabotrated content and documents, while most standard ECM solutions, such as Documentum, FileNet, OpenText or Oracle, are being used for document centric applications and records management. This multiple ECM implememtation approach presents the challenge of unifying the taxonomy of the multiple solutions. A single enterproise taxonomy is required for integrating the ECM solutions as well as providing a search facility that can span the multiple repositories. The best way to address the taxonomy unification may be to implement an external taxonomy service that integrates with all of the ECM solutions. The advantage of this approach is the ability to manage the enterprise taxonomy from within one application and using an integration with the ECM solutions, push out the taxonomy to the individual solutions.
Another advantage of an external taxonomy is that these specialized applications support extended functionality such as synonyms and like terms. This functionality is not typically supported in an ECM solution. Using these extended features can provide users with an enriched search capability for finding information. The advantage of a single taxonomy combined with the extended functionality will make these external taxonomy services more common as organizations implement their multi-repository enterprise ECM strategy.