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Digital transformation propels SA content services platform market

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Monique Williams, Hyland SA country manager.
Monique Williams, Hyland SA country manager.

As digital transformation takes hold across sectors, South Africa’s content services platform market is huge and possesses multimillion-rand opportunities for service providers.

This is according to US-based Hyland Software, which says the local market is growing rapidly as a result of accelerated digitisation and has unexploited prospects.

A content services platform is an integrated set of content-related solutions and tools that share common application programming interfaces and repositories to support multiple enterprise-level content usage.

It is also referred to as the next “evolutionary phase” of traditional enterprise content management systems.

The global content services platforms market is estimated to be worth $163.04 billion by research firm Data Bridge and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 21.80% until 2028.

Monique Williams, Hyland SA country manager, says her team “considers the content services market in South Africa to be growing rapidly and possessing untapped potential, totalling in the tens of millions of dollars”.

She explains: “Digital transformation and COVID-19 caught a number of companies off guard in terms of being able to share content, and be able to collaborate on that content, across the organisation, whether employees are on-premises, or remote.

“So, due to these factors, companies are eager to kick-start, enhance and develop their digital transformation journey, so that their employees, and customers, have access to content, when and where they need it. This will ensure their employees and customers can make the relevant business decisions.”

US-headquartered software firm Hyland recently hosted its South African partners in Johannesburg, to discuss digital transformation strategies, as well as content services modernisation and achieving success in the cloud.

Since the outbreak of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, the digital transformation agenda became a must for most industries, as more companies embarked on the journey to digitise their operations.

This dramatic shift, Williams says, expedited demand for content services solutions in South Africa.

“Cloud adoption is a huge influencing factor, as many customers are moving to the cloud, and the decision for customers is whether to upgrade legacy content services applications that are not currently cloud-enabled, or whether to invest in a new content services platform,” says Williams.

“The move to the cloud is gaining significant momentum in South Africa and content services platforms need to be cloud-ready to ensure this requirement is met.

“The journey to cloud was very slow 18 to 24 months ago, and in the last six months, that conversation has changed. The mindset is changing drastically and the acceleration into cloud is heating up.”

The growing demand for services locally has helped Hyland grow its market share and revenue, says Williams.

“We are growing in South Africa. We are growing from a revenue perspective probably on average 20-25% year-on-year over the last two years. We are seeing a lot of growth in the manufacturing industry, as well as financial services, particularly on the insurance side of things.

“We are seeing a lot of insurance automation and claim processing projects coming down the line. We are also seeing a lot of traction within higher education.”

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