Publishing Industry_Technology is in

09 Feb 11 Publishing Industry_Technology is in


Over the last year, the publishing industry has aggressively incorporated technology to address key issues in its operations. The rise of the digital market has led to publishers re-engineering their legacy workflows – workflows that were incapable of incorporating digital content production. For publishers actively incorporating the digital production of content, challenges such as increase in number of file formats, optimizing workflows and resource constraints have prompted the increasing use of technology.

With the rise of the digital content market, publishers are now managing multiple workflows – internally and externally (pre-press vendors’ workflows). The need to produce digital content, in itself, has led to many technological challenges that are centered on the lack of internal capabilities/expertise internally. The adoption of technology within the industry has evolved from enterprise technology to “functional” technology. Such technology has a direct bearing on functional processes – processes that are industry specific (from copy-editing to preparing print/digital ready content).

The Provider Opportunity
Providing functional technology provides a sizeable opportunity for providers. Almost all publishers globally have a requirement for such technology. While the technology could be packaged as a bundle, customized (outsourced product development) or off the shelf, it represents a market that could accommodate providers of varying types, sizes and skills. The following table provides an outline of each type of provider and their respective strengths, weaknesses, opportunity and threat.

 Providers  Pre-press IT-BPO and ITES  IT (OPD)
  • Functional expertise in providing services
  • Expertise in providing services can form the basis of strong software development
  • Existing relationships with publishers can be leveraged
  • Existing expertise in offering IT-BPO services
  • Ability to develop and scale operations
  • Such companies have active Media and Entertainment verticals with significant clientele
  • Expertise in developing software
  • Strong internal resources to offer custom solutions
  • Expertise in developing software
  • Most of these companies offer IT enabled services and could have weak technology teams
  • Considerable outlay of resources
  • Lack of domain expertise might affect the ability to offer services to clients
  • Lack of process expertise might inhibit such companies from successfully addressing the industry’s needs
  • Offering technology solutions in addition to existing pre-press services
  • Using horizontal services (such as HR, F&A, etc.)as an entry point into industry specific services
  • Developing strong industry specific functionalities while offering solutions
  •  IT-BPO companies
  • Software/ITES/KPO
  • Pre-press companies that have strong technology capabilities
  • IT (OPD) and Software/ITES companies
  • IT-BPO companies
  • Software/ITES/KPO

                                                               Source: ValueNotes Research

Of the groups, pre-press vendors are best positioned to offer functional technology solutions to publishers. Having already developed a significant expertise in industry specific services, such vendors are capable of addressing various issues and challenges that publishers might face. Several pre-press vendors have created proprietary solutions that are offered to clients as a value addition. However, other pre-press vendors might not have the resources to develop technology solutions internally.

Irrespective of the vendor groups, functional technology needs to translate to tangible benefits for the publishers – benefits that positively impact productivity and/or address issues with industry specific processes. The publishing industry is experiencing the convergence of industry processes and technology. And vendors who can address both have a sizeable opportunity to focus on…

ValueNotes Research
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