A majority of our Documentum pharma clients have yet to upgrade from the 5.x platform up to 6. Pharma clients have been long-time users of Documentum and as a result have robust (often highly customized) Documentum installations, causing upgrade costs to soar. In addition, a significant upgrade often means a complete system revalidation which in and of itself is expensive. Many are excited about the new user experience features and technology enhancements that are available with 6 (right-click support, multi-object select), but their business partners are not ready to sign off on a six figure upgrade that doesn’t provide any new functionality.
If you are one of those pharmas, now is a good time to look at how you have implemented Documentum and if there are steps that can be taken to minimize impacts during future upgrades. For example, can third-party software be leveraged rather than building more customizations? When customizations are required, utilize technology such as web services to isolate the customizations from the software. Careful planning upfront can have a significant impact when it comes time to upgrade. So when planning your next application, consider “upgradability” when defining your architecture and your list of features. You’ll be happy you did when D7 is released in the not too distant future.
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