Today, I will talk about two last components of ECM cycle - Preserve and Deliver.
Eventually, content ceases to change and becomes static. The "Preserve" components of ECM handle the long-term, safe storage and backup of static information, as well as the temporary storage of information that does not need to be archived. A content management system usually has capabilities to accommodate these functions.
Long-term storage systems require the timely planning and regular performance of data migrations, in order to keep information available in the changing technical landscape. As storage technologies fall into disuse, information must be moved to newer forms of storage, so that the stored information remains accessible using contemporary systems. For example, data stored on floppy disks becomes essentially unusable if floppy disk drives are no longer readily available; migrating the data stored on floppy disks to Compact Discs preserves not only the data, but the ability to access it. This ongoing process is called continuous migration.
To secure the long term availability of information different strategies are used for electronic archives. The continuous migration of applications, index data, metadata and objects from older systems to new ones generates a lot of work, but secures the accessibility and usability of information. During this process, information that is no longer relevant can be deleted. Conversion technologies are used to update the format of the stored information, where needed. Emulation of older software allows users to run and access the original data and objects. Special viewer software can identify the format of the preserved objects and can display the objects in the new software environment.
The Deliver component of ECM provides content to users. Content gets where and to whom it needs to go through a number of tools. Content can be delivered via print, email, websites, portals, RSS feeds.
Security is involved in delivering the content to users. It prevents the illegal distribution of rights-managed content by restricting access to content down to the sentence level as well as granting/restricting permissions for forwarding and accessing content.
In order to effectively manage all components of ECM cycle, a content management system is the best solution. I am going to talk about content management systems in one of my next posts.