File and Document Management Considerations for Enterprise B2B SaaS Startups

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Enterprise business to business startups often handle files and documents as part of their value proposition. For instance, consider a work management platform startup, where files and documents are core to their business. But managing files and documents for large global enterprises is complicated and requires a sophisticated approach grounded in security, compliance, and productivity.

A new offering from Microsoft, Syntex repository services is designed to make it easy for startups to address global enterprise requirements while delivering a great end-user experience. In this article, I’ll discuss common app scenarios, review enterprise requirements, and talk about how Syntex repository services help you and your customers realize value faster.

We announced Syntex repository services at Microsoft Build in May. You can read more about the features and launch partners in our announcement blog, Introducing Syntex repository services: Microsoft 365 superpowers for your app. Syntex repository services are built on the Microsoft Cloud and power Microsoft 365 experience like Microsoft Designer and Microsoft Loop. You can use this same technology in your apps today.




File and Documents in B2B Startup Apps

Files and documents play a significant role in many aspects of enterprise software and there are several common patterns startups deploy to enrich their apps. For example:

• Your app may generate domain specific content using LLM technology or manage supporting documents used as part of grounding.
• Your app may create documents dedicated to a particular purpose based on structured input, including work orders, contracts, or invoices.
• You might decorate transactional records with supporting files and documents, such as spreadsheets attached to an accounting record, a creative brief attached to a marketing requisition, or a PDF of a signed contract attached to a closed won sales opportunity.
• Your app might manage sensitive documents related to employees or customers, including personally identifiable information (PII) such as government IDs, tax records, etc.
• Your use case might require that you collect, organize, and share files and documents related to a financial analysis, marketing campaign, merger, or board discussion.

This is not an exhaustive list. Any time you might use an “upload” button in your app, you’ll need to consider enterprise needs when building this functionality.

Enterprise File and Document Management Requirements

Global enterprises face unique challenges when it comes to managing files and documents at scale. These include:

• A wide range of global compliance requirements, from GDPR to CCPA to data residency requirements and beyond.
• Governmental and internal requirements around business line isolation and document sensitivity classification.
• Dynamic security and user access controls that shift significantly over time.
• Project specific or regulatory backup, archive, and retention policies designed to preserve information for years or decades to come.

These requirements, and many others, shape enterprise software buying and adoption behavior in significant ways. Any startup targeting global enterprise customers’ needs to have a comprehensive strategy for how it manages files and documents within this operating environment.

Microsoft has been serving this market for several decades. Organizations across all verticals and in every geography upload over two billion documents a day to Microsoft 365, adding 200 petabytes of content every month.

Introducing Microsoft Syntex Repository Services, Headless File & Document Management for Apps

Microsoft Syntex helps global enterprises process, assemble, and manage documents at scale, across their full lifecycle, with AI powered automation and powerful APIs. Syntex repository services is a headless, API only, file and document management service that allows enterprise B2B SaaS startups to harness the power of Microsoft 365 in your app, without having to develop a full suite of enterprise content management features on your own.

Repository services is a pay-as-you-go service that makes it easy to include critical enterprise file and document management capabilities from the very beginning of your product development, including:

• Robust collaboration capabilities for all users, including guests, using Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
• Rich content management capabilities, including version management, soft-delete and recovery, doc preview for over 300 file types, and fully custom information architecture using folders and containers.
• Comprehensive security and compliance integration using your customer’s Microsoft Purview configurations to manage eDiscovery, retention, sensitivity labels, audit logs, and more.

Repository services are tightly integrated with Microsoft 365 and uses the familiar Microsoft Graph API for all operations.

Comparing Syntex Repository Services with Traditional Cloud Object Stores


Syntex repository services and cloud object stores serve different purposes. Repository services are specifically designed to work with files and documents in an enterprise environment and include everything a global enterprise might need to work with this kind of unstructured data at scale. Cloud object stores, on the other hand, are designed to persist a file and have no built-in features that are document type or operating environment aware such as collaboration, compliance, or the rich content management features you find in Microsoft 365.


Getting Started with Microsoft Syntex Repository Services for your Enterprise B2B Startup

Since Syntex repository services is a headless service, getting started on a proof of concept and then integrating into a typical SaaS architecture is straightforward. Customers routinely report it takes a few hours, depending on the use case.

If you’re interested in joining our preview, sign up today.

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