This week, The Forrester Wave™: Content Platforms, Q1 2023 went live! We looked at 13 key vendors and evaluated them on 26 criteria. This resulted in three Leaders, seven Strong Performers, two Contenders, and one Challenger. To learn more about these vendors and how they serve their target markets, see the full report.

 What Is A Content Platform? 

Cloud content platforms now dominate the mature market that we’ve historically called enterprise content management (ECM). Technical decision-makers and the business peers they’re supporting are no longer looking for generic document management systems, but need flexible, extensible platforms on which to design, develop, and deploy a range of content-rich applications. Tailored user experiences and integrations with essential enterprise applications and productivity suites put content squarely into the modern digital workplace. 

Technology Decision-Makers Invest In Content Platforms As The Pace Of Innovation Rises 

According to Forrester’s Software 1 Survey, 2022, 67% of software decision-makers expect to increase their spend on ECM. The use cases, however, continue to evolve as product roadmaps embrace intelligent document extraction capabilities, enable customers to use AI/ML with pretrained models for common document-rich scenarios, embed content into key collaboration channels, and expose relevant files and tasks in the UI of major enterprise applications, such as Salesforce or SAP.

What Should Buyers Look For? 

Not all vendors are ideal for every content management use case. Know your needs in terms of governing content over the long term, sharing and co-creating content with peers, automating routine processes, and using AI/ML to accelerate innovation and take mundane tasks off the information worker’s to-do list. When looking at content platforms, remember that: 

  • Vertical expertise matters. Look at the vendors that know the unique requirements of your industry and that have apps and solutions designed to meet them. 
  • Platform breadth and depth can reduce the need for multiple products. Look for platforms with active and innovative roadmaps that can eliminate the need to procure products in closely adjacent markets. If process automation is a need, look for a vendor that pairs content with strong workflow engines. If collaboration is key, look for a platform with secure content sharing and tight integrations to common team collaboration channels. 
  • Hybrid work is facilitated by content in the cloud. After a couple of years of remote work, many workforces are trying to find the right balance of return-to-office vs. home office work. Technology is foundational to delivering a level playing field, regardless of where an employee sits. What isn’t up for debate: Access to the information needed to get work done is essential to a highly engaged workforce. Finding content, trusting it, contributing knowledge, and sharing documents securely are core capabilities delivered by content platforms.

To learn more, take a look at the full report. 

If you have questions about the content platforms or the ECM landscape, please reach out and set up an inquiry or guidance session. Email or book an inquiry online.


We appreciate the active participation on the part of the 13 vendors we evaluated. These include Box, Google, GRM Information Management, Hyland, IBM, iManage, Laserfiche, M-Files, Microsoft, NetDocuments, Newgen, OpenText, and SER Group. We also owe a big thank you to their reference customers who took the time to engage with us and provide their confidential feedback on their platforms’ strengths and weaknesses.