Metalogix Unveils a SaaS Offering to Manage Content Collaboration
Metalogix, a provider of unified management software to migrate, manage and secure content across enterprise collaboration platforms, has rolled out a new SaaS offering, Content.ly, to help businesses take control of their content across various collaboration platforms, including Microsoft Office 365, Slack, Salesforce, Box, Dropbox and Google for Work.
"Across the average enterprise, content is constantly in motion between users, platforms, and devices -- rarely with any level of standardization on a single ECM, collaboration, or file sync and share platform," said Trevor Hellebuyck, Chief Technology Officer, Metalogix. "Content.ly is a SaaS offering that enables businesses, specifically IT organizations, to regain control of these platforms and ensure they have the same management, monitoring and governance over the entire collaboration ecosystem that they have deployed across their on-premise platforms."
The new offering provides a comprehensive set of cloud apps to manage the lifecycle of content stored and shared across multiple platforms. Content.ly runs on Microsoft’s Azure with Metalogix running an on-premises business. The new system is designed to deliver a single point of control to monitor and manage disparate cloud collaboration platforms. Here are some offerings of the new platform:
Migration and synchronization’ data protection and restoration
Sensitive content security with context-aware identification, filtering and classification
Permission control, auditing, and reporting
Suspicious user activity detection
Data Loss Prevention
Archiving and retention
With these capabilities, the platform enables users to move content from any file share into a platform of their choice. The content can be categorized while the cloud services can be controlled or monitored on usage. From a single interface, the entire extended collaboration environments can be quickly scanned. It empowers users as they can find sensitive content and determine where it is supposed to go. From there, they can move, manage, monitor and report on its usage.
Content.ly addresses the management issues that have arisen as organizations make broader use of cloud services to share content, according to Metalogix. Given that the average organization today makes use of 4.5 content and collaboration services for their in-house confidential information and files subject to data privacy regulations, Content.ly targets to provide administrators a central point of control over all those systems. IT organizations can also make use of Content.ly to move content from one cloud environment to another using metadata captured by the Metalogix service.
During the event, Adam Levithan, Metalogix’s Director of Product Management, shared some common use cases as an example to prove that the high number of platforms claimed isn’t marketing anecdata: “If an organization uses Office 365, they are starting with two right there – SharePoint and OneDrive for Business,” he said. “But then the marketing department may well use DropBox, because it’s very good at handling large files that those departments send, and the content typically isn’t risky information. Then the sales department will use Salesforce, and consultants or departments may use something else, like Box.”
Although the technology being used in Content.ly is not new - as Metalogix has already been using it in other solutions, like Sensitive Content Manager - it is being applied here for a new purpose. The new offering was announced at the Microsoft Ignite conference in Atlanta, and during his speech, Adam Levithan commented on the lifecycle of the technology behind the product: “The technology itself has been baking for a few years behind the scenes, and powering a few of our solutions,” he said. “It has been out there but hasn’t been fleshed out as a separate product. It was first used in Drive2Office365, which was released almost immediately with Office 365 in 2013. This was the first seed, and all the technical things needed to run a platform would wind up being built behind it.”
Since Metalogix provides solutions that manage and protect SharePoint and Office 365 content, this new offering represents a natural extension of Metalogix’s business. Ben Levitan, Metalogix CEO, puts in: “these environments sit at the heart of a much more complex collaboration ecosystem.”
Content.ly is expected to be particularly important for partners as the CEO thinks it is a strong opportunity for a lot of partners to benefit. Metalogix Content.ly is designed from the outset for their partners, particularly Microsoft Cloud Service Providers who are investing to expand. From the partners’ perspective, partners who build their own applications will be able to sell them in the App Store due to the platform’s SaaS environment. Content.ly provides access to apps for functions like migration, synchronization, restoration, archiving, and securing sensitive content. Users can pick apps of their choice. Pricing models will differ from one app to another, but generally, run about $1 per user per month.
Metalogix plans to release Content.ly components on a rolling basis starting today as Levithan says the applications that make up the core content management services, which Metalogix will provide, will formally roll out now through early 2017. Third-party developers can also utilize APIs to develop apps of their own by taking advantage of the product’s core services, and then distribute them via the Content.ly app store. For the time being, partners can embed Content.ly apps in a website or client-facing portal, but not attach their own logo to those services as full white-label branding will be available sometime in the future.
Founded in 2001, Metalogix currently has 400 employees, doing business from 10 global offices in 86 countries with the organization working with 20,000 customers for over 15 years. In April, it launched a joint venture with Microsoft aimed at migrating on-premises Microsoft SharePoint users to SharePoint Online. According to Levithan, Content.ly represents an evolution of the company’s business model, which has emphasized stand-alone systems for moving, managing, and protecting data up until now.
We, as the CMS-Connected team, were at SharePoint Fest Seattle last month to capture exclusive interviews with event speakers and attendees, to tap into the resonating conversation buzzing on the event floor. We were lucky enough to catch up with Metalogix’s CTO Trevor Hellebuyck to talk about the differentiators of their service as well as the expertise they offer their customers, which is gained from almost 15 years in the SharePoint and Office 365 space.
15.8% of documents in cloud file sharing services have sensitive information. Keeping track of what content is seen by whom is one of the major challenges for enterprises dealing with booming collaboration and document services, and services often used without an approval from the IT department. Since the service essentially lets users aggregate and centralize their monitoring and management across multiple cloud services, Content.ly may be the solution that many organizations have been looking for.