Alfresco® is the world's leading Open Source enterprise content management solution. It provides a comprehensive suite of tools and services for organisations to cost-effectively manage the storage, user authorisation, access, change-control and collaboration of their ever-increasing plethora of digital information.
Traditionally, document management or ECM has rarely been used outside of very large corporations and public institutions. Proprietary products are typically very expensive and difficult to operate. This is no longer the case thanks to companies like Alfresco.
By using Open Source, Alfresco manages to successfully combine some of the best freely available components, such as Java, Tomcat and MySQL with their own engineering skills and a global community of users and contributors to help innovate, develop and improve the product. Alfresco Community edition is freely available and distributed under the LGPL license. This encourages people to try, use and contribute to the product.
Alfresco builds on existing Open Source technologies and uses Open Standards to provide access thus eliminating the single vendor lock-in scenario that other platforms such as Microsoft's Sharepoint™ suffer from. And right down to individual records in the Alfresco repository, user access, logging and versioning can be applied so as to maintain complete control and history of your information. This applies to all records too, Alfresco handles any digital information in virtually any format. Layering on top of the repository and access mechanisms is comprehensive workflow management enabling the application of your organisation's processes onto your information management system; you are not required to alter your processes to fit that of your ECM. The end result of deploying an ECM system like Alfresco can be improved communication, less errors and mistakes, better collaboration between your stakeholders and consequently improved performance overall.